I walked into my apartment and I knew something was wrong. You know how you can just sense when someone has been in your apartment? I felt that. And it makes me very uncomfortable. I did a quick scan of the tiny, wood-floored apartment: bikes still there, still a mess of papers and magazines on the table, Sterling seems to be ok, through the archway, glancing into the bedroom, and into the kitchen. To the refrigerator. I opened the door and my chest tightened as soon as I saw my big jar of dill pickles on the top shelf. I've never put the big dill pickles on the top shelf; they're always on the bottom shelf of the door. Someone has been in my apartment and they moved my big pickles. A-ha! Hmm...
Then I noticed there wasn't a shelf on the door any more. So that's why the pickles were on the top shelf. And my beer, I wonder where it went. Quick memory inventory: Avery Karma Ale, Grimbergen Dubbel, Urthel Tripel... Where did they go? The bottom drawer where my hotdogs are has a hole in it. Something punctured the drawer. Where is the shelf?
I extracted myself from the refrigerator and headed for the bedroom. Hole in the wall. Sawdust. White dust on the jeans I pile, folded in half, next to my bedside table. Dirty clothes, more dust, and a hole in that wall too.
I was driving around shortly after I found myself holed up in my apartment, looking for a house to buy, checkbook in hand. And I came to an intersection, a very old intersection, where there is a diner and I'm sure at one time there was a barbecue restaurant and it felt like there should've been a hamburger grill. I stopped, windows down, and noticed suddenly that I didn't smell food. The familiarity of that circumstance led me to believe I would smell meat cooking, but I did not. There was an olfactory hole in that intersection, for sure.
So here's what happened. My landlord is always tinkering around with his little hispanic buddy at my quad-plex. It's a pretty old, but super cool brick building that sits up on the hill overlooking the river and when I sit on the front porch on a bench I made of two by fours, the sunsets are every color. Not to mention the river trail is across the street and it takes 20 minutes to walk to McNellies. And 30 to walk home. So, for some reason, the landlord or his mexican buddy (who is always parked in my driveway, working on his car) decided to drill a hole in the brick wall outside my bedroom. I assume they thought they were drilling a hole below my bedroom, but they actually drilled a hole through the side board on my floor and the quarter-round. Then they ran electrical conduit through that hole, under my bed (thank god Sterling wasn't sleeping under there), under my bedside table, over my haphazardly-folded jeans, over my dirty laundry (across the room from the skeletons in my closet), and this is where it becomes most unbelievable.
I have no idea how this happened, but that metal conduit, which was about 8 inches over my floor, went through the opposing wall of my bedroom. Into the kitchen. Wait. You're not going to believe this. THROUGH the back of the refrigerator. Through the plastic cold storage drawer, knocking the shelf off the bottom of the door and jarring open the refrigerator door. Then out the front of the refrigerator and through the opposite wall of my kitchen, into my neighbor's apartment.
This is true.
He skewered my apartment. I had an apartment-ka-bob. So at some point, he must've realized things weren't JUST right, and went into my apartment to discover this "minor disaster," as he called it, and extracted the conduit sword that impaled my home. I kept walking over and opening the refrigerator door, looking inside, thinking, "No, that's not possible." But yes.
The expansion of the DoubleShot into the adjacent space is going really well, I think. No "minor disasters" to speak of. My dad has done all the build-out, and he has done an amazing job. You'll someday walk in to a whole new DoubleShot, much more like it should've been in the first place. Happy father's day to the most talented man I know.
When will we be open over there?
When I went to the permit office to get permission from Big Brother to expand my business, they asked a lot of questions, some of them more than once, and they acted like I was an idiot for trying to do this. When I went back with what I thought was what they needed from me, they acted like I was an idiot because I didn't hire an architect to draw the plans and did them myself, and my quarter inch scale was actually a 32nd over and there's NO WAY they were going to be able to use those plans like that. And I went to Quikprint (where they're in such a hurry they don't even have time for the "c") and asked him to reduce the size of my prints by 4%, and then I took them back to the permit office. You have to sign in on the touch-screen computer at the front desk and then sit for a long time until you hear a voice from behind one of several cubicle walls holler your name.
"Did you talk to Jimmy? You have to talk to Jimmy first." I'd never even heard of Jimmy. So she called and called, trying to find Jimmy, trying to find out if Jimmy was at his desk or if Jimmy even came to work today. And then she said I could look in Jimmy's office and see if he was in there. And then she told me it was just in the adjacent cubicle, and I poked my head around and Jimmy wasn't there. I could've saved her some phone calls. But then Jimmy came back to his desk, but he didn't say anything to me because the guy who couldn't read my plans when they were 4% too large came up and started talking to me again. I'm not sure what Jimmy was supposed to do, but he didn't do anything. And then he told me I needed to go back and talk to Bertha again, or whatever her name was. So I stepped back around the cubicle wall, where Bertha was doing her nails and adjusting the fan blowing on her necks, and she said to me, "You have to go sign in again." So I walked back to the computer and signed in and sat down again for several minutes. Mind you, I was their only customer at the time. Then another cubicle called out to me and it was almost as if I had to start over because things seemed very confusing, even though I had been through this twice already. And I'm not even doing any construction. All I'm trying to do is get a certificate of occupancy that includes the new space. And 32nd of an inch guy was so concerned that this concrete and brick and metal building isn't sprinklered. "You may have to sprinkler this whole building." Or build a firewall around the opening that leads from the concrete floor, down metal stairs to the concrete basement.
And then I was driving south on Cincinnati and I stopped at the light right next to City Hall and I'm sitting there waiting for the light to turn green, listening to music that reminded me of my ex-girlfriend, when 32nd of an inch guy walks across the street, right in front of my car. I saw him and it was like the hole in my refrigerator. I kept looking at him, wondering why he was walking across the street when he should've been approving my plans. And I thought about it. You know. You know what I thought about. I could've stepped on the pedal and had I just overestimated by a 32nd of an inch, maybe, you know...
And maybe my landlord started a 32nd of an inch off and ended up air-conditioning my bedroom through the back of my fridge. Had both of these knuckleheads walked in front of my car at the same time, I can't promise anything.
So when are we going to be open? Don't ask me, I overestimate.