aqua fortis

Saturday, December 17, 2005

At the Risk of Believing Everything I Read...

...I found this fascinating tidbit about Coca-Cola's labor practices at bottling plants on Rhys's blog. If it's true, I can't say I find it surprising. But Rob won't be very happy if I tell him he can't drink Coke any more.

I only have about two or three more shopping errands to run before all our Christmas shopping is done. Tomorrow's will be rather odious because it really involves at least two separate stores, plus some random street fair wandering--I'll be meeting some friends from Mills at someplace in Berkeley I've never been called Thai Temple (scroll down for listing), which should be cool. I'm sure I'll be very hungry as the shopping will precede the food.

I am looking forward--at least in theory--to buying some tiny Cal schwag for our 9-month-old nephew Miles. I am not, however, looking forward to fighting the crowds that will be thronging Cody's and the Telegraph Holiday Street Fair. Sometimes I'm amazed I used to live only two-and-a-half blocks from Telegraph, on Channing. (Of course, I had other routes to walk to and from my apartment, such as cutting through a church parking lot.) I kind of miss that apartment. It was decent-sized, for a studio, with a huge bathroom containing a bathtub with feet. One of my psychology TAs lived upstairs, which was weird, because every once in a while I'd hear people having screaming fights up there. I always kind of liked that, in front of the building, there used to be a worn-down statue of a nude maiden of some sort, made of what appeared to be poorly cast concrete.

One time I locked myself out of my place on a Sunday, when most locksmiths seemed to be closed. At that point, I only knew one person in the building, this quiet bearded man named Joel who lived across the hall, had a nice white cat named Casper, and sold strange items made of reconfigured silverware on Telegraph. He had helped me move in, and I hardly ever saw him after that. So I knocked on his door, nearly in tears, and he helped me look (fruitlessly) in the phone book and calmed me down. (His apartment, by the way, was FULL of ALL KINDS OF CRAP. I guess that's not all that unusual.)

He then said he was going to try one last thing before we continued looking for a locksmith. He went to my door and put in his own key. Lo and behold--and shudder--it actually opened my door. I shit you not. We exchanged a significant look which meant both "this should not be," and "we will pretend this never happened and never speak of it again." I thanked him profusely, and hoped that he wasn't some secret weirdo who would abuse his newly-discovered ability to enter my apartment. And apparently he wasn't, and didn't. He'd been living there forever, and seemed to be the closest thing we had to a building manager, which there wasn't in our building. The rental company seemed to bend the rules for him as a result--cf. the cat in a no-pets-allowed zone.

Later, the rental company sold the building to Reddy Realty, whose manager shortly thereafter was convicted of running an underage prostitution ring of Indian immigrant girls or some such ickiness. Plus they made a bunch of noise building a laundry room in the basement. And every time they needed to get hold of me by phone it was the most urgent thing in the world so they'd call me like twice in a day and leave me these pathetic messages like "We call you so many times, but you never call us back." Good times, good times.


Corey said...

You're right - you shouldn't believe everything you read. I think it's safe for Rob to chug Coke. :o)

writegrrrl said...

hey Sarah - I just wanted to drop you a note. My home DSL is (STILL) down and that prevented me from getting the follow-up e-mail...I'm really sorry I missed all of you guys, I was so looking forward to it. Tanita e-mailed me and mentioned the possibility of a March outing? I would so love that! In any case, I hope you & I can catch up before then...