rants

When landlords are scumbags…

I’ve been reading up on the current plight of landlords and tenants in the United States. There’s been a lot of news about tenants refusing to pay rent because they’ve lost their jobs due to the coronavirus. Some people have simply broken their leases, forfeiting their security deposits and moving in with family. Some can pay, but don’t want to spend their savings when they know they may not make any more money for awhile.

I’ve seen some good stories about landlords working with their tenants, helping them work out a deal so that no one ends up homeless. And then I’ve seen posts like this one…

Does this person think a new tenant is going to show up ready to move in? Who’s able to move right now? Either way, the landlord is not going to be paid.

I get that landlords are in business to make money. I understand that they, too, have bills to pay. However, as someone who has suffered abuse from landlords of the past, I also know that without renters, these folks would not be in business. A lot of them seem to forget that they are being paid for a service. More than one of our previous landlords has treated us as if we work for them when, in fact, they work for us. We are paying them– not the other way around. Greed is not an attractive trait in anyone. And if landlords want to evict otherwise decent tenants for not being able to pay rent during a global pandemic, they deserve the disrespectful bottom feeders they’ll eventually get.

Fortunately, our current landlord is very good. He lives next door, but never bothers us, is always respectful of our time and privacy, and has told us he wants us to be happy. We’re also lucky in that, at least for the time being, Bill is working and being paid his full salary. So our landlord has gotten his April rent and will likely continue to be paid for at least a few more months, and probably longer than that. The workload for Bill hasn’t changed yet, and it doesn’t look like it will anytime soon. He’s able to do most of it from home, too.

I really do understand that landlords want and need to make money. However… we’re in an extraordinary situation right now. An unprecedented number of people have lost their jobs. I’m hoping that most landlords have the decency to work with the people who rent from them and come up with a win/win situation that benefits all involved parties. What’s going to happen if many thousands of people are evicted due to this? Who’s going to be able to rent with an eviction on a credit report? Are people just expected to vacate the premises and live on the street? That will do a lot to curb the spread of disease, won’t it?

The landlord in the above post is concerned that his tenants will “get accustomed to paying the subsidies rate as opposed to the market rate.” What happens when NO ONE is able to pay what used to be the “market rate”? That’s what will happen if everyone stops working, and most people don’t have a couple thousand bucks to spend on the rent anymore. The market rate will probably change for a long time, and the landlord might be lucky to get the subsidies rate. I think the landlord in this post is very short-sighted. He thinks this will be over in a matter of weeks, when it will probably take a lot longer to get this situation under control.

I really wish people would just cooperate. The sooner the virus is under control, the sooner things will get back to normal. A forgiving, compromising, and kind attitude will go a long way toward making this situation better for everyone. I’ve read a lot of disturbing posts from ignorant people in the United States who think people are overreacting about the coronavirus. They obviously haven’t been paying attention to the exhausted medical professionals who are fighting this battle up close and personal. And, oh yeah– some of those folks are having their pay cut, too, despite the insane work load they’re handling and the actual, very real danger they’re in!

The comments on the above post are bananas. Several property owners are whining about how no one cares about the landlord. One guy repeatedly brags about how he became a property owner at age 30, and that those who don’t empathize with the poor landlord who posted this offensive shit have “never owned property a day in their lives”. Bully for you, guy. Some of us don’t have the luxury of staying in one place.

Believe me, if Bill hadn’t been in the military, it would have made me very happy to buy my own house and live in one location. His job would not allow for that, so we don’t own our own home yet. When we move back to the States, I’m hoping that the next house we live in will be ours, because I have had my fill of being a renter and putting up with overbearing idiots who don’t have basic respect for other people and think they have the right to treat renters like serfs.

Aside from that, I think the attitude that people who rent their homes are universally irresponsible and negligent is especially repugnant. We’ve been lucky enough that most of our landlords– save for a couple– haven’t tried to suck us dry and have basically done their jobs. It’s been my experience that the lower the rent is, the more likely the landlord is going to have a extortionate attitude toward their tenants. We have had a few property managers try to screw with us, and a few have somehow mistaken Bill’s kindness for wimpiness or stupidity, but ultimately we came out on top. We’ve also had some genuinely good landlords and property managers who were decent and compassionate, and a genuine pleasure to do business with. Our experience in North Carolina comes to mind.

Anyway… I do think people should pay their landlords if they can. I don’t agree with going on a rent strike just for the hell of it. But it’s a two way street. So many people have been laid off and can’t make money right now. That’s the way of the world. I think it’s best if people simply get over themselves and find a way toward a workable solution. In the long run, that is the only way people are going to get through this crisis.

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scams

No way, Jose!

Today’s post may be too racy for some readers. If you don’t like sex talk, move along to your next station.

About a year ago, I got a scammy email in my Gmail account claiming that the sender had one of my passwords and video evidence of me doing “naughty things” on camera. The sender wanted me to send $4000 worth of Bitcoins to keep him (or her) from sharing said non-existent videos with my loved ones. I posted about it on my old blog, mainly because it was the first time I’d ever seen a threatening email that used an old password of mine. The first time I read the email, I was half asleep. At first, I was really alarmed and unnerved by it, but then I was amused.

Yes, it was true that the idiot had one of my passwords, but it’s a very old one that I don’t use on any of my current accounts and haven’t used at all in many years. Basically, the dumbass who spammed me with this threatening email was hoping to shock me into paying a lot of money because s/he claimed to have videos of me masturbating.

I won’t deny that sometimes I do masturbate. Most people do, and 99% of those who don’t are either lying or extremely boring, sexually repressed people who need to get a life. Honestly, there’s no shame in it. It’s the safest sex you’ll ever have. If you honestly don’t masturbate, I truly feel sorry for you. That must be a frustrating way to live. You probably play a lot of basketball or run a lot of laps. Or, at least you might if you’re a member of a certain religious persuasion.

My friend Lori shared this today, so I had to update the post with this… it fits.

I don’t care that people know that I masturbate. However, I know for a fact that no one has any videos of me doing that… and even if they did, I don’t think I’d care if they watched them. Unfortunately, not everyone feels the way I do about this subject, so people have been scammed. I closed my old blog, but in the interest of public safety, here are screenshots of that post.

So now, here it is, just over a year later. I got a similar post from someone calling himself “Jose”. He makes the same claims “Elton” does, but with a lot less finesse. Jose is not a particularly coherent English speaker/writer. Behold…

Friends, relatives, and “colleagues” (of which I have none anymore), if you get a video of me masturbating, I hope you enjoy it. Frankly, I’d rather read dirty stories than watch boring videos of people shagging themselves or each other. That’s not what turns me on. I like how “he” leaves me with the gentle advice to be more careful and visit secure sites. Yeah… thanks for that, you vile criminal.

Listen… I don’t care if you have videos of me jerking off. I suspect they would bore most people. I’m just not very sexy. I think it’s hilarious that someone would spam me with this, too… they don’t know me at all, do they? Just like a lot of the people who read my blogs and assume they know me.

No way, Jose. I’m not falling for your “Bit”. Go find another sucker. You don’t even know my name, anyway. It’s true that many people have taken the bait and fallen for this trick. I was not among them last year, and I won’t be today, either. So buzz off, Jose.

In other news… it’s August first, which means I survived July. July is historically a horrible month for me most years, so I’m feeling pretty good that we got through it. Of course, that doesn’t mean August won’t be awful, but at least we’ll be on vacation for part of it. And, with any luck, the vacation won’t result in my getting sick… or one of the dogs getting sick… or Bill getting sick. I love Scotland, but every time I go there, someone gets sick. Knocking on wood that this time, it will go off without a hitch.

Speaking of scams… today also marks what would have been Bill’s 29th wedding anniversary to his ex wife, who did all she could to rip him off while she had the chance. I usually forget about this day, but Bill reminds me. Today, I reminded him. He looked sheepish and said he’d like to forget about it, but I reminded him that if he hadn’t gone through his time with Ex, maybe he wouldn’t have ended up where he is now. Where he is now isn’t a bad place at all…

As for me, 29 years ago, I was preparing to begin my freshman year at Longwood University. I wasn’t all that excited to go there, but it turned out to be a great choice for me. I still have many great friends from those years. In fact, one friend from Longwood pointed out that we’ve had a running joke about a short story by Stephen Crane since 1991. Everyone else who sees me write “I ain’t got a gun on me, Scratchy”, will think we’re joking about The Simpsons. But, in fact, we are joking about “The Bride Comes to Yellow Sky”. Of course, we probably thought “Scratchy Wilson” was funny because of The Simpsons, which was very hot TV back in those days… not that I ever watched it much.

Anyway… August 1st is another day of infamy that isn’t so bad now… Here’s hoping your August is scam free and fun. And Jose manages to go fuck himself with his threats of indecent exposure.

Edited to add: Bill wonders why I would pay Jose $600 in Bitcoins when I could obviously sell that video on the Internet and make mucho dinero…

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