Wednesday, October 7, 2009

I Just Adore A Penthouse View

She's Still ZsaZsa From The Block.

We've finally succeeded in convincing my mom to move from the suburbs [insert crickets here] into the throbbing, mind-blowingly exciting metropolis of three blocks from us. I know. It'll be great to have ZsaZsa (not my mom's real name) right around a couple of corners after decades of living almost an hour away.

Naturally, I helped her find a new pad - specifically, an apartment. Which is how I learned:

Lesson #1: Looking for an apartment for your mom is very different than looking for one for yourself.

Corollary to Lesson #1: I have lived in many a dunghole in my day.

I foolishly counted up the number of times I've moved since returning to Los Angeles after college. [Please savor the complimentary Muzak as I put my pom-pom socks and Mary Janes back on.]

As you can see on the tote board, my current home is the [hork] twelfth place I've lived since the ol' undergrad years. Each of these domiciles was rigorously vetted and had to meet a crushing set of criteria before I would even consider living in any of them.

Namely, I required that each of my residences be - and this was non-negotiable -
AVAILABLE.

I know. I told you I was picky.

Some of the "bonus features" of my old apartments have included:
  • The convenience of an independent pharmaceuticals distribution hub right next door (open 24 hours).
  • A kitchen carpeted in wall-to-wall shag.
  • A demonic toilet.
  • Locked out? No problem! These here windows lift right out of the wall!
  • "The Eliminator" elevator.
  • The restful quiet that can only come from not having to listen to the pesky hum of an air conditioner.
Believe it or not, these attributes held surprisingly little appeal for ZsaZsa (although I think she'll come around on the kitchen shag once she's rolled on the floor while eating a moon pie - no one can resist that). And, when I thought about it, I realized I had a different standard for my mom's pad, too.

Lesson #2: My mom's new pad needs to be safe and (relatively) freak-free.

Which Is Why I'm Surveilling Her Building.


Oh, sure, the apartment is nice. But we all know that it's really all about the people in the building, yes? Right.

Allow me to share my findings to date with you:

Apt. 307 - Shadowed portly male occupant from elevator by carrying potted shrub against my chest and making little hops. Subject emitted unnatural creaking noise with each step. Is likely listed on a national registry of some sort.

Apt. 110 - Suspected sweatshop that appears to be churning out substantial quantities of macaroni art. Wait, scratch that. They just have a lot of children. Never mind.

Apt. 202 - Arbonne Cosmetics representative. [Note to self: avoid second floor altogether or risk another forcible exfoliation.]

Apt. 314 - Portal to the early 70s. Glimpse through open door revealed variegated shag carpet, smoked-mirror wet bar and metal wall sculpture of pointy sailboat cluster. Possible Tiki epicenter.

Apt. 105 - RED ALERT. The people living in #105 are all [gasp] professional mimes.

Aw, hell. And things were shaping up so nicely. Why couldn't it have been something manageable...like a meth lab?

My friend Leigh Cunningham has just published the first in a series of children's books entitled THE GLASS TABLE. Congrats, Leigh!

35 comments:

Lynn from For Love or Funny said...

Thanks to that macaroni art, I think I sniff a free meal! Free pasta...what could be better? (I hope your Mom likes her new digs.)

Anna See said...

well, i guess you could just have her move in with you! love the green acres title!

Grand Pooba said...

Hahaha! Your poor, poor mother!

"Sunshine" said...

I think I like 314...

Kate Coveny Hood said...

At least the mimes will be quiet.

And I always laugh when I see someone make fun of Arbonne. I actually use it and really like it - but I have this suspicion that my sales rep is brainwashing me...

Prefers Her Fantasy Life said...

You've just described a microcosm of LA. Minus the meth labs.

Oh My Goddess said...

I can't help but wonder if Carleton the doorman might still be available.

I hope you know who I mean.

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

When my parents first divorced, back in the 70's, and we moved from our semi nice home to the rental home district, the house had some special features. One. The bathroom had red and white striped wall paper, black accessories, and came complete with a poster over the toilet of a tiolet with arms reachign up out of it. Not sure why, but weleft the poster up.

La Belette Rouge said...

Zsa-Zsa's bag matches your car so nicely. I am guessing everything you own is bright red and white. Yes? It is nice to have a colour story and stick with it.

Always Home and Uncool said...

Is it Maim a Mime Week yet?

Pop and Ice said...

I had to move my Mom from a rather spacious apartment to a smaller, but safer senior complex. But I threw in a new cat so I think it's all on the plus side. tis a serious thing to move a parent at any time. Keep up the surveillance. You never about those suspicious apartment dweller types.

madtexter said...

Ah, your mum must be so happy that you helped her find the perfect crack den to live in. And yes, I do think she'll come around on the kitchen carpet thing.

If I were you, I'd also give her rides to the supermarket in your schnazzy red Gremlin!

Anna said...

Looooove the Eliminator Elevator!

Anna

Renee said...

Oh how I love you. har har har

Love Renee xoxo

Florinda said...

Your mom's just three blocks away now? Not bad. It's nice to have some say about who your neighbors are.

But definitely keep an eye on the mimes (an ear won't do you any good).

Maura said...

Your past plethora of apartments remind me of some I inhabited at one time or another in the Bronx - minus the shag in the kitchen. New Yorkers prefer ancient linoleum that curls up at the edges and shows the wood through various bare spots. With the proper application of spilled soda, your guests can actually get caught like mice on a sticky trap.

As for the occupants: different coasts, same cast of characters (except for the mimes - we don't let them out of Central Park).

Alicia said...

hahaa!! at least you don't have to worry about the mimes being loud!

Mouthy Housewife said...

Yep, at least when you live next to a meth lab, you can always go over and borrow a cup of Sudafed when you run out.

Wendi

Merrily Down the Stream said...

Professional mimes MUST be hurting for gigs these days - the beauty of that is you don't have to listen to them complain!

Harlem's A Hatin said...

Love the story!

Check out my blog, I just got into this whole world!
http://harlemshaterade.blogspot.com

The Retired One said...

Freakin' hilarious!!

Mammatalk said...

So glad to have Zsa Zsa in the neighborhood. Can't wait to see what kinda fun she gets into to!!

Brenda Jean said...

BHAHAHAHAHAHAHA Oh man, I think the 70's apt. is the worst, but it's really a toss up with that and the freakin' mimes. Shudder.

I have apt. horror stories too. One had BIG cockroaches, another had fleas and big spiders. I think I blocked out the people, so they must have been worse than the bugs!

Farmers Wife said...

Relatively freak free....love it!

HermanTurnip said...

"Possible Tiki epicenter". That, my friend, is brilliant! Heh. Thanks for making my night complete...well as "complete" as it can be without Jack Daniels, a heaping bowl of pork rinds, and my Ab-Flex machine...

http://terribleanalogies.com

K a b l o o e y said...

Does a professional mime need only make enough in tips to buy whiteface makeup and superhighwater pants? Or do they actually have to fully support themselves by doing the "locked in a box" thing?
Curious. Also wondering: you are willfully moving your mom 3 blocks away? You really should perfect that hiding behind a potted plant maneuver...

MuseSwings said...

This freaked me out: As I read your initial comment about shag carpet in the kitchen, I immediately imagined moon pie crumbs popping out of it as I walked with mincing steps to the sink in my fuzzy pink slippers. A few lines down you spoke of moon pie crumbs in the carpet. Hope Zsa-Zsa loves her new digs.

Amy@Bitchin'WivesClub said...

Your mom is so lucky to have you doing all the legwork for her! Imagine her horror of having to find out herself that Mimes! were in the building. No woman over 70 should have to deal with that alone....

sherri said...

Considering moving my mom to the same town. Not sure bout this. Let me know how it goes. And how did you determine the mimes were "professional"? just curious. And the seventies apt. sounds perfect.

Ms Bibi said...

Hope your mom finds a good place.

I love your blog. It's very entertaining.

Barry said...

Way too funny!! Brilliantly written.

And with a little bit too much truth to it.

Sorcerer said...

lol! nice one!

Anita said...

Tell your Mom to e-mail me as soon as she is settled and has her internet up and running. I miss hearing from her!
Anita Wages

Jeanne said...

What a good daughter you are.

Mine would let me live in a rat-hole, as long as it wasn't within walking distance of her house.

Elisa, The Unlikely Housewife said...

Wow, you are staking out your mom's new place? You are such a good daughter.