I do NOT enjoy writing negative blog posts. But I do reserve these moments for when it is sadly the healthiest option to get these thoughts out of my relentlessly badgering brain. And when I blog, the opportunity for snarky headers, structured paragraphs, and a happy-go-lucky conclusion actually helps me work through my anger. Because I am a nerd.
People with compensating hair-cuts normally don’t like me
I have always prided myself on being able to get along with a wide-range of people. I’ve never liked confrontation, and I strongly believe that holding onto rage is only harmful to yourself. And yet when people take advantage of your kindness simply to make a point, I have trouble keeping myself quiet. Last night Ben and I were royally screwed over by someone we thought we trusted- some who was actually our friend for years, who fed our cats when we went off to get married! And no, she can’t find this blog, and yes it was our old landlord. I am not into vague-booking. The option was this or a letter, and since a letter only would have given her the satisfaction to rip into us with other asinine accusations, I am blogging with pictures of puppies instead.
The rant-y part…
Originally there were three paragraphs here outlining how she nickel and dimed us out of a large chunk of our security deposit for things beyond our control as tenants. But then I realized it didn’t matter if it was on here or not. So I replaced it with more puppies.
The myth of revenge
We got in the car feeling completely defeated. Because of the excessive amount of time it took her to give us any of the money, and her petulant reply when we tried to reason with her, we didn’t feel like it was worth going in circles. You cannot reason with unreasonable people. And at the end of the day, would small claims court be worth the frustration of still having her in our lives? It was an exhausting ending to an exhausting move.
It is clear, most unfortunately, that she is not a happy person. A great lesson I got from my mom when I was little was to figure out why someone is grumpy. My sister had a discouraging teacher, famous in the school for making 5th graders fail, which really takes effort in my opinion. And yet instead of hating the lady, we were asked to consider why she was so mad. Because yes, speaking up and defending yourself is appropriate a lot of time, but what happens when the problem is more than poor teaching or a security deposit? When the problem is misdirected anger or loneliness, than what can I do for that person other than have pity on them, and if sadly necessary, cut them off from bringing me down too? I talked about this way-back-when in a post about people ranting online.
ALL of the mailing lists!
When we got home last night, we finally hit that place when all that was left to do was laugh. It took the whole car ride to talk myself out of calling her and re-sparking the fight. I am lucky to have a husband to talk me off my soapbox when there wouldn’t be an audience for my protest. But then we started to list off joking ways to get back at her cold send-off: mailing her nickels and dimes on post-cards with messages like “thought you might need these!”; or spamming her email with every creepy website on the internet; or even reporting her to any online forum for landlords abusing their position.
I woke up with these little silly but obnoxious plans in my head. They were jokes, we weren’t going to put the energy into them. And yet I couldn’t get them out of my head. I woke up physically tense, tired, and unable to focus on anything other than sifting through NJ tenant rights docs online. I found nothing useful.
And then a thought went through my head that not only shocked me, but ENDED my plotting.
Without going into personal detail, it involved David’s Bridal, and it wouldn’t have been kind.
If you’ve ever experienced David Bridal’s marketing plan, you know they come at you at all angles, at all times of the day. I was once called by an automated message congratulating me on my engagement 6 times in one day. They even called from different numbers so I would pick up.
For me, it was like that moment when you all of a sudden realize you’ve had too much to drink, usually by taking off your heels at a wedding, cutting your foot on shard of glass, and thinking it’s HILARIOUS. It’s that sneaky kind of drunk you never see coming, but you should probably look out for.
I had been stewing in my anger for this woman for so many months that I was coming up with really really awful schemes to make her feel lousy. And why? What would it do for me other than realizing how much of an asshole I am after I “sober up” from being this angry? It wasn’t like me.
So yeah, I surprised myself, and decided it was time to let it pass.
I’ve spent this whole day debating if standing up for myself would get me anywhere. And I’ve 100% come to the conclusion that, no, it would not. When someone on Facebook posts about their ignorant or ill-researched political views, or writes about their triumphs in an obnoxious way, where does it get me to rip into them? I will feel worse, and all I am really trying to do is to make that person feel as badly as I do. So now I am the one causing harm.
Someone hurting enough to ruin a friendship by screwing them over this way does not need to be lectured. They are already drowning in whatever problems have brought them to that point in life. Tonight Ben and I will go to a friends party, enjoy the warm summer evening, and return to our non-hostile home surrounded by trees and peaceful neighbors (and happy landlords). Also, Jersey City was a wonderful place to us, and full of many incredible moments in our relationship. Her pettiness changed none of that, and that is what matters. She may have that money, but we still have our lives. I hope that money brought her as much happiness as she hoped.
So long, Elizabeth Street.