I cheated on my apartment last evening.
I feel sort of guilty.
My apartment and I have been together for about a year and a half. We're pretty close: I know every knook and cranny and have stuffed it with my most precious items. My apartment, in return provides me with many interesting experiences that I've never had before as well as gives me shelter and all that crap.
But we've just grown so- you know- comfortable together. I mean, there's nothing new in our relationship. Yeah- a midget lives upstairs. I've seen it. Yeah- the transvestite across the hall that thinks that she's a hispanic woman when in fact he's a fat white man with bad hair. That novelty wore off long ago. And the neighbor next door that has sex every Saturday morning? At first, it was erotic, but then I saw what he looks like and I felt like I'd just been raped by Gumby.
I guess that it's just gotten kind of old with the two of us. I was lying in my small ass bedroom, feet hanging off the end of my twin sized bed when I realized: "Dammit, Ladeeleroy. You've had this bed since you were 4 years old. You're almost 24. That means you've been sleeping in this twin sized bed for 20 years now." But then, when my mind started to wander- I realized that there's no way that I could fit a full size bed in that apartment. It's a shoebox. Literally. It's like living in a LaQuinta suite. A really crappy LaQuinta suite (just in case some of you know of actual swank LaQuinta suites.) I can watch television from the toilet. And that's even with the 'kitchen' in between the bathroom area and the 'living room.' ('Living room' should just be read as 'patch of carpet that you step on when you walk in the door.')
So yesterday I took off work and decided to, you know, drive around some neighborhoods that I thought were pretty decent and see if any duplexes or garage apartments were for rent. I wasn't looking for anything serious. I was just, you know, looking around for the hell of it.
And there it was.
Right there on the corner. Oh, how it tempted me. I slowed down a bit and eyed it up and down.
My ass tightened. My heart sped up a little bit.
The skylites. Oh. The windows. Oh. The patio hanging off the side. Oh oh oh. The double doors that opened onto one of Austin's hidden creeks. Oh my God.
I drove away quickly.
There's no way that place could be mine. There's no way. We're not right for each other. It would never work out. It would ask to much of me- high rent, the electricity bills must be phenominal what with all the windows and vaulted ceilings and wonderfulness.
I turned my car around the corner and drove by it again. The place- it's called a 'mini-house' because it's not an apartment but it's not a duplex because it's not connected to anything. It's like a guest house, but for really really important guests- well, this place is amazing. I stopped my car and wrote down the number. Quickly I sped away.
When I arrived back at my homestead, I felt guitly. I know my apartment knew I was looking at other places. I could feel it. My apartment was trying to hide that it was crying- but I could here the faucets leaking and one can't ignore the humming pipe sounds that it gets when it's upset.
I called the number. When the line began to ring, I stepped outside because I didn't want my faithful walls to hear my conversation.
Keeper of the Mini-House: (in a deep, sultry, whispery voice) Helllllo?
Ladeeleroy: Um. Hello. Yes. I was driving and- um. I- I'm sorry. This is a little- I just saw the Mini-House and- well- um.
Keeper of the Mini-House: Would you like me to tell you a little bit about it.
Ladeeleroy: Oh, yes. Yes I would.
Keeper of the Mini-House:(explaining each in a slow, seductive manner) Well, it's got a gassss stove. Ceiling fans to coooooool you off in both the living room and the bedroom.
Ladeeleroy: Mmmmm hmmmmmmmmmmm.
Keeper of the Mini-House: The enitre place has Spanish tile flooring. The bathroom fixtures are brand new. The patio opens onto the St. Edward's green belt.
Ladeeleroy: Ohhhhhh yeah, baby.
Keeper of the Mini-House: And it's available in January.
Ladeeleroy: MMMmmmmMmMmMmMM. How much is the rent?
Keeper of the Mini-House: Well, we're asking for $725.00 a month.
Ladeeleroy: Ohh. That's a little steep.
Keeper of the Mini-House: Well why don't you come by and take a look around at it?
Ladeeleroy: Oh, I don't know. I mean- we just met.
Keeper of the Mini-House:There's nothing wrong with just looking, is there?
Ladeeleroy: (looking back at my apartment's door) Um. No, I guess there's nothing wrong with just looking.
Keeper of the Mini-House: Well, why don't you just come by and, just, look.
Ladeeleroy: All right. I'll be there in 5 minutes.
I ran inside, head looking down at the raggity carpet in my apartment so that it wouldn't be able to see the guilt in my eyes. I grabbed my keys and sped over to the Mini-House.
My hands were sweating when I pulled up. I quickly fixed my hair as to make a good first impression. Popped an Altoid. Put on my charming face and stepped up to the Mini-Houses door.
I hesitated knocking. A stream of memories from my apartment came over me: Thanksgiving around my coffeetable with Lipman and my Mom. The way the closet door squeeks when I open it to retrieve a sweater. How the garbage disposal only likes to work on Wednesdays and Saturdays. The way the dishwasher moans when it hits the rinse cycle. The smell of cat piss in the laundry room upstairs. The nights I've slept with my bedroom windows open listening to traffic on the highway near by- like a cosmopolitan river.
I shook these thoughts out of my mind and knocked.
The door opened. I swallowed.
Oh. My. God.
This Mini-House is amazing. The windows... the exposed wood work... the vaulted ceiling with caramel colored beams... the ivy growing around the back patio's double french doors...the old-timey brass shower head... the built-in shelves and the.. and the.. and..ohhhhhhhhhhhh.
I creamed my panties.
I ran my hand over the tiled kitchen counter tops. I fondled the cabinet's wooden handles. I caressed the window frames. I breathed in the soft, muggy, wet air that streamed through the open frosted windows in the bedroom.
I turned to the Keeper of the Mini-House. She could see it in my eyes. She knew that I was hooked. She could see my entire need for nesting and deocrating and entertaining.
Keeper of the Mini-House: Would you like to fill out an application.
I stopped. Application? That would make it an official cheat on my apartment. I would be cuckolding the place that has housed me for the last year and a half. I would be betraying our Lease.
Ladeeleroy: Yes. Give it to me.
I quickly filled out all of my information, my lips pursed, my eyes squinting, my head turned slightly to the side as to mask my disgust with myself as I made it official that I was a candidate available for the Mini-House.
I left. My mind was decorating every inch of the place.. I knew where I would put my mirrors. I know exactly how the votive candles would be arranged. Sidney the goldfish would reside perfectly on the built-in shelves of the bedroom.
Then I pulled into my apartment's parking lot. I looked at it. It began to rain.
I'm not shitting you. I had a "High Fidelity" moment- standing in the rain- looking at the horrendous yellow paint with brown wooden molding- watching the mail that was scattered about become wettened and soggy.
My throat choked up. Tears welled a little bit in my eyes. I felt so dirty.
"I'm sorry.," I whispered when I walked through my apartment's door.
Incredibly, my apartment forgave me. The garbage disposal worked for me after I made a batch of Cheese&Mac... and it was only Thursday! The hot water in the shower worked longer than the usual 7 minutes. My air conditioning maintained the temperate atmosphere perfectly throughout the evening... so unusual.
I felt so bad. I made it up to my apartment by cleaning the kitchen and vacuuming the living room a.k.a. carpet patch. I lit all of my candles and sat on my couch- looking at my homey apartment and realized how incredibly cute it is- in all of it's efficient $475.00 glory.
And I fell into a cozy couch sleep...dreaming of the good times to come here in my apartment...
Then a roach fell out of the air vent above my head and landed on my face.