Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Don't Get Between Me and My Sunday Comics

Three weeks ago, I got a new neighbor. "Coincidentally" enough, four weeks ago was the last week that I got an intact Sunday newspaper.

I am, for the most part, a go-with-the-flow kind of girl, preferring a general idea of what's on the agenda for the day to a schedule made out in 15-minute increments (God help me when I have to start worrying about billables). However, there are certain things that are an immutable part of my routine and missing one of them makes me very cranky and out-of-sorts. One of these things is breakfast-- no matter what time of day I actually get up, I must have breakfast as my first meal. Cold pizza or any other left over is not an acceptable breakfast. Breakfast must consist of something identifiable as "breakfast food": cereal, a danish, eggs and bacon, toast with jam, Pop Tarts. Paradoxically, other mealtimes are not subject to similar restrictions. It is perfectly acceptable in my world to have a pancake supper. Another of these things is reading a book before bed. Not the whole book, just a few pages. I get between the covers, turn out all of the lights except the lamp next to my bed, and read for 5 or 10 minutes, fifteen at the most. I don't know why, but these few minutes make the difference between me tossing and turning, waiting for sleep to claim me, and being able to click off the last lamp and fall straight into the arms of the Sandmännchen.

Reading the Sunday paper while lingering over coffee is one of these routines. And the petty jacka... I mean, wonderful neighbor who is stealing my paper is making me cranky and out of sorts. I pay good money for this paper, and more than at any other time in my life, I do not have money to spare.

After coming home to discover that, yet again, my paper was gone before I could get it into my hands, I posted signs over both banks of the mailboxes in our building-- partially to disguise the fact that I am basically accusing the jacka... I mean wonderful neighbor of stealing my paper. The next morning, a note was attached to my note, "politely" informing me that I was not the only person who lived in the building and that if I had problems with delivery, I should just go to the store and buy the paper there, "which is what I do". Signed, The Jacka..., I mean Wonderful Neighbor in Apartment 3.

This has royally hacked me off. It's bad enough to steal my paper, but then to suggest that I just go buy it at the store if I don't like having my paper stolen is infuriating. First of all, I get it much cheaper from the subscriber service than if I pay full price every week. Second, and most importantly, I want to be able to go downstairs in my PJs, pick up the paper, and go back to my couch and my coffee. I do not want to have to get dressed, get my car, drive the mile or two to the nearest store, park, go inside, find the paper, wait in line at the checkouts, go back to my car, drive the mile or two back home, and find a new parking spot before getting back to my couch and my coffee. I should be able to pay for that service, given that it is a regularly offered service available to anyone who requests it. I should not have to forego this just because you can't keep your sticky fingers to yourself.

On a side note, one week, he took everything except the front page, the local news, and the college football supplement sections and threw the rest on the shelf under the mailboxes, then laid the plastic bag it came in on top of the pile. What the hell is wrong with him?

Does anyone have any good suggestions on how I can keep the jacka... I mean, Wonderful Neighbor from taking my paper?



At 10:57 AM , Blogger Rebecca said...

No suggestions, but I bet the circulation department at your paper has dealt with this before...maybe a quick call to them to see what they would suggest?

Failing that, I'm sure he could suffer a nasty "accident"...

At 1:21 PM , Blogger pacatrue said...

I like the idea of pepper spray or mace. I don't know how it would help, but I love the idea of him getting sprayed with it and writhing on the floor for a few minutes. I will never understand jacka- I mean wonderful neighbors like this pri- i mean dude. I was going to say man, but I think we need to hold that term back from him.

At 11:42 PM , Blogger EEP said...

Put a paper laced in a quick drying solution that causes rashes. Or glue.

At 9:53 AM , Blogger Megarita said...

This means war in my book. I think I'd call the paper and change the delivery time or something. Or sit and wait for him to show in the morning. Or see if the security cameras in your building caught him in the act. Evil evil evil.

At 11:40 AM , Anonymous Anonymous said...

I agree - call up the paper and see if they can either deliver the paper to your actual front door or possibly slip it in underneath the door (not sure how much space there is).

~ Pei

At 10:16 PM , Blogger katze said...

The problem with having it delivered directly to my door or something is that he lives in the building-- in fact, directly across the hall from me. So, there isn't really anywhere "safe" to have the paper left. We'll see what happens tomorrow morning.


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