Often I'm given no more information than an address and apartment number when visiting a job site. I don't know the reason for the mold inspection, who will be present during the visit, or whether there's serious drah-mah between management and the residents. I recently inspected a large apartment in the Bronx. The apartment was originally two separate units that had been combined in a... co-op?.. condo??...something building (I still can't tell the difference between the two).
I arrived at the address. No doorman, and no answer when I buzzed the apartment. Fortunately someone entered the building and I stealthily snuck in behind. I proceeded to awkwardly creep around trying to find the super. Eventually I located him belting out Celine Dion while mopping the floor. He let me into the empty apartment which was occupied, although allegedly the tenants had temporarily moved out during the remediation process. The super informed me that only the kitchen required testing--a pipe connected to the dishwasher had burst. I was like, awesome! Easy-peasey! The super leaves me to get back to his work (aka "My Heart Will Go On") since I didn't need any help. I decided to call my mom on the phone, thinking I could waste a little extra time checking in with her as well as fooling around on Social Girl during the inspection (if you aren't familiar with this app, I highly suggest you familiarize yourself IMMEDIATELY!). Mid convo avec ma mère, I notice a man standing behind me.
|Direct quote: "There could never be too much argyle in the world!"|
This man was middle-aged, balding, chubby, and exuded an aura of general creepiness. He identified himself as, let's say... Clark Crabman. He prefaced his name with some long-winded BS sounding job title, that did not register in my brain. He claimed to represent the apartment's residents. Uhh, what? I have no idea what that means. To this day, I still have absolutely no idea of his purpose, or how he was involved with the apartment. In the aftermath of the investigation, my fellow colleagues and I came to the conclusion that we wouldn't exactly call him the most upright of "business" men.
|Bald? Check. Chubby? Check. Kinda creepy? Check-times-infinity-no-comebacks.|
Anywho, Mr. Crabman followed me around the entire time at a distance that can only be described as inside-my-personal-bubble. He also kept calling me "Ma'am". Let me make one thing clear, it is ALWAYS offensive to call a woman, especially me, "ma'am" OR "miss". Both words send shivers down my back. The former = old lady, the latter = young girl. I am a WOMAN. If you must use one of those sort of phrases, I'll accept "mademoiselle" (because everything said in French sounds fancy) or, even better, how about you ask me to repeat my name and use that?!
|Ooh la la!|
Feminist aside over, continuing on... About every 3.76 seconds, he would call me to come over to an area in which he had found "mold". He made me take a picture of every, little spec of whatever. I'm like dude, I'm going to report that there was water damage on this wall. I'm not going to say there was water damage in the top left corner, bottom right corner, middle, above the granite counter top, etc. etc. etc. Despite this, he continued to insist that I take pictures of all the "damage". And instead of testing only one room as planned, he had me test EIGHT rooms. I can't even tell you how much bending up-and-down and crawling all over the place with a moisture meter that entails. Ugh. All work and no play makes me a dull mold girl.
To add insult to injury, the place was absolutely disgusting. It looked like the family had gotten out of there in a HURRY. Food was still lying around. Dirty towels remained in the bathrooms. Random belongings cluttered the entire apartment. The icing on the cake was the den. One could argue that the residents are creative? Resourceful? Call it whatever, but I think everyone can agree the den was a tad unusual...
|Why yes, that is a van car seat used as a couch! I call it post-, post-modern trailer trash chic!|
Butter my butt and call me a biscuit. Here I was thinking that only the cast of Aaahh! Real Monsters used discarded junk as furniture, but I can admit when I'm wrong!
|Ickis is so on trend!|