I know my building is shady. Its wonderful and beautiful and old school, and definitely shady. It’s unique and grand and convenient, and probably also has a bit of a drug habit. Which is fine, because we all have our problems. The building’s goods strongly outweigh its bads, and besides, the price is right. The roommate is cool, and the neighbors are…unique, but mostly friendly. The laundry is free. The train is a one block over. There are three bars in the building, five more within the block, and a dozen more in the neighborhood; I can almost always get a drink. There is often live music. There is a Saturday Market across the street. There are winos and crack heads and gutter punks outside, but there is also a sturdy double lock on the front door, and neighbors who look out for each other. There were vague mentions of a lease that never materialized, but as long as I show up with cash around the first of the month, everything’s been cool. The apartment is likely illegal, but I can’t imagine anyone asking questions.
Until there was no hot water. Cold Water Flats, Midwest blue collar flats are romantic and old school and bring about that fantastic sense of nostalgia, but I sure as fuck don’t want to live in one today. This isn’t 1908 Chicago or 1923 Detroit. And despite my love of cold showers as a way to combat the heat or the frustrations manifest by cutie pixies, I cannot handle it in the winter. I need heat, I need clean. The floor is cold, and the bed is lonely, so the shower absolutely needs to be hot. I haven’t made it yet, I’m still struggling, working, grinding, just getting by.
Damn it building, give me back my fire, give me back my passion. Give me back my hot water.