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You Have To Stand Apart(ment) Somehow

, , , , , | Legal | November 21, 2021

I found a well-paying job as a software engineer in Berlin and naively believed that I wouldn’t have any trouble finding an apartment in the largest city in Germany.

As it turns out, the competition for vacant apartments was FIERCELY competitive and applying was akin to buying raffle tickets. Each apartment showing would have approximately twenty to thirty people piling their applications onto a tower of other applications, only ONE lucky applicant receiving the apartment. And as I would leave, I would pass by another crowd of thirty-plus people appearing for the next appointment showing. To gauge the level of competition I was up against, I posted a fictitious advertisement for an apartment — no photos, crappy part of town, more expensive than usual. Twenty-four hours later, there were 315 messages in the site inbox!

I found myself living in hostels, and out of desperation, I decided to try something innovative. I posted an advertisement offering a €2,000 reward to anyone who was either moving and willing to give up their apartment to me or otherwise knew someone else with a vacant apartment they were willing to give me.

As I should have guessed, this attracted a number of aspiring con artists. I say “aspiring” because either I have the word MORON stamped on the back of my head or they’re accustomed to swindling third-graders.

Message #1: “Send the reward money in cash to [post office box] and I’ll help you out!”

Message #2: “I own an apartment in [Area]. Meet me at [Restaurant], bring the €2,000 in cash with you, and we can discuss the terms of the lease.”

Message #3: “I have an apartment I’m ready to move out of. Send the reward money to [bank account number] and I’ll give my landlord a three-month notice, and it’s all yours!”

Message #4: “My mom owns an apartment. Give me the €2,000 and I’ll have her hold it for you!”

I ended up amending the advertisement to say that the reward would be paid AFTER the keys and signed lease were in my hands and I was physically in said apartment. This drastically whittled the responses down to people who actually did have an apartment they were planning to vacate.

Fortunately, I ended up finding an apartment, and ironically, the girl who gave it to me insisted I keep the €2,000.

Do Dead Men Tell Tales?

, , , , , | Working | November 4, 2021

I live in a government-owned block of flats which houses only elderly people. About a year ago, I was attacked by a resident who is known to be a drug abuser and has attacked and hospitalised a number of residents of the complex and outsiders during what appear to be drug-induced psychotic episodes.

He tried to kill me, and he might have done so if a young visitor to the complex had not interfered and prevented it. I was very badly traumatised and have never really recovered from the incident. 

I contacted the Housing Department urging that my attacker be evicted for the safety of all the residents.

Me: *On the phone* “He tried to kill me! He should be evicted for all our safety.”

Bureaucrat: “Well, we can’t evict him unless it is for something serious.”

Me: *Nonplussed* “You mean that him trying to kill me isn’t something serious?”

Bureaucrat: *Obviously not paying attention* “Not unless he actually killed you.”

Me: “…”

There’s Literally An App For That

, , , , | Right | CREDIT: MasterMirage | October 16, 2021

I work front desk at a relatively big apartment complex which has some owners and companies doing [Online Vacation Rental Company] rentals in some of the units.

A lot of the property owners hate these units, as a lot of them are not vetted properly and just book a room to party for a night and trash the place; it’s cheaper to do so compared to a hotel room. Luckily, my job does not require me to provide any service to [Rental Company] guests, as we’re only paid to look after the building and the tenants.

One day, there’s this group of six to ten women who have booked a two-bedroom apartment for a hen’s night. They come into the lobby.

Guest #1: “Hi there, we are checking in. Here are the papers.”

Me: “Hi there, I assume you’re a [Rental Company] apartment? In that case, we don’t handle keys or the check in process for your apartment.”

Guest #2: “It says here that we need to collect keys from you.”

Me: *Reading the instructions* “Hi there. It says here that you go pick up keys from the locker down the street.”

Guest #2: “Oh, my God. Why is check-in at this place so difficult?”

Me: “Unfortunately, this place is not a hotel, so we do not handle [Rental Company] guests.”

The guests groans and eventually leave to get their keys.

Later that night, one of the women phones the intercom.

Guest #3: “Excuse me, bucket of ice to our room, please. Thanks.” *Hangs up*

Me: *Calling back* “Hi there. We do not provide that service here. If you require ice, look in the freezer in your fridge or go to the convenience shop across the road.”

Guest #3: “There is not enough ice here. Can you go fetch us some from the shop, then? Thanks.”

Me: “No, I cannot. As I said, we do not provide these services.”

Guest #3: “Well, that’s a rude shock. Can you go get us extra towels for the room ASAP?”

Me: “Please ask your [Rental Company] host.”

Guest #3: “Do you do anything? Do you even know the Wi-Fi password?”

Me: “Please ask your [Rental Company] host.”

Guest #3: “Honestly shocking service.  We’ll never be staying here again and will be leaving you a really bad review.”

Me: “As I mentioned before, this place is not a hotel. You have booked an [Rental Company] apartment, so anything you require should be communicated to your host.”


Lounging About In Your Underwear Is The Cat’s Pajamas!

, , , , , , , | Friendly | September 29, 2021

We used to live in an apartment with a balcony facing the street. There was a unit next to us, so their balcony was a few feet down from us along the side of the building, facing the same direction. It was a busy street and that was our only “outside area,” so my boyfriend and I liked to spend time out there, and we noticed that our neighbor had some odd habits.

He would put up tall pieces of plywood on the side of his balcony when he was out there, facing toward our balcony only, not toward the street. Despite this, it was easy to see that he would sit outdoors, shirtless and only wearing tighty-whity style underwear, and rub his bald head while watching the foot traffic and cars below.

It seemed harmless enough — we could always see his hands, at least — so what did we care? 

Our big ginger cat loved going out on the balcony and would sit for hours on the railing and watch the birds. One day, I had the sliding door open to let the cat in and out as he pleased and not play butler every five minutes. I saw that the cat was sitting on my boyfriend’s grill. It was closed, but it still was probably not the most hygienic place for a giant cat. 

I poked my head through the open screen door and told him sternly, “Get your butt off of there!”

I had barely noticed that the next-door side partition was up and our neighbor must have been enjoying a head rubbing session because, the next thing I knew, there was a half-naked-and-tighty-whity blur visible in the gap between the door and the makeshift partition, diving headfirst into his apartment at my remark!

Thankfully, his apartment’s access was on the opposite side of the building and we never ran into him other than on the balcony, but we’d glimpse him in the parking lot occasionally, always in a very straight-laced banker-type suit!

Volume High, Intelligence Low

, , , , , | Friendly | September 6, 2021

I live in a flat near a woman who disturbs the whole block of flats with her very loud music. When we can’t stand it any longer, a group of us go to ask her to turn it down a bit. Because the music is so loud, it takes a lot of banging on her front door to get her attention. When she finally answers, we can’t talk to her because the music is still far too loud.

I push past her, go into her flat, and turn the volume down so we can talk to her. She looks very surprised.

Woman: “How did you do that?”

I’m a bit slow on the uptake here.

Me: “What?”

Woman: *Very puzzled* “How did you make it go quieter? I have been annoyed by it being too loud since I got it.”

I’m very perplexed, as we all are.

Me: “You just turn the volume control knob and it goes lower.”

Woman: *Even more puzzled* “What’s a volume control knob?”

After a demonstration, she finally came to understand that she could use the volume control to turn the loudness up or down. It appears that no one had ever told her that there was such a thing as a control to change the volume. She thought it was set at one loudness and she had to make do with it.

She still sometimes has her music a bit loud, but it’s nothing like it used to be, and now she can turn it down when we ask her to.