May 23, 2022•1,292 words
You know what? I have been part of this blogging platform for a smidge of time but I'm recommitting. I'm restarting my 100days. Because I need to. I need it. I need to have some kind of outlet for my writing. Weirdly enough, I just simply forgot about writing for a smidge of time. I have no idea how. I've been an avid journaler for... ever. Forever. In fact, I move around a tote of old notebooks of my jr. high and highschool journals because for some reason they feel relevant, important. I have always put so much stock in pouring out my words onto something, paper, typing, whatever. How could I forget about writing? Well, I did.
Then one evening, I felt so down, so bummed. I sat in my chair waffling on whether to call someone, or whine to my boyfriend, or ignore the feels by watching an episode of something distracting. The the realization that I could journal smacked me across the head. My jaw hit the floor with the stupid simplicity of remembering something that used to be a reflex. So weird. So I journaled. Oddly enough, just journaling hasn't been doing the trick for me.
I think that I need interaction. Not a lot. Not from people I know even. I just need to be able to scream my truths out into the void of the internet. I have a blog for skydiving. That's where I put all my skydiving stories, successes, failures, rants, raves. But it's not expansive enough. I need a different thing. This is that thing.
So here I am. Recommitting to writing for 100days to see what happens.
Why today? Well, really the question was "Why not yesterday?" (followed by "Why not the day before that, and before that, and before that?") Honestly, yesterday uneventfully, yet forcefully sucked every drop of my energy out of me for other things. I wish I was exaggerating.
I spent the morning preparing notes I had for a small claims hearing that I was participating in today. I spent the early afternoon with my parents, in SoCal from out of town to visit, but far apart and with masks because they brought covid here. The fight of guilt vs. choosing to be safe and social distance duked it out in my mind all week. I wanted to see the so badly but I also did not want to catch covid so that I could attend this hearing in public. Anyway, I did visit with them yesterday, outside, masked, for an hour or so. But the clouds of this impending hearing loomed over me and I couldn't think of anything else so I went home to prepare. At home, I prepared some more for the hearing but I also spent some time cleaning and boxing things up because I'm moving Wednesday too. I have too many balls in the air. I am not a good juggler. I'm good at dropping things. Please someone come and catch a few balls for me so I can juggle fewer! But to summarize: yesterday was busy.
Today, I had a very big personal win. Very long story short: My landlord took me to court for 3 months of rent after vacating a lease. My boyfriend and I had split, mine was the only name on the lease, and he moved out. I couldn't handle the rent, so when she wouldn't work with me, I moved out. She spent 3 MONTHS fucking about: updating the carpet, being on vacation, raising the rent, and other nonsense, before she got a tenant then tried to pin me with the entire cost. However, she didn't refund my deposit nor did she give me any notice of how my deposit was spent within 21 days as required by CA law. (California rental code is pretty expansive which is good news for me I guess.) In fact, states that if your landlord doesn't do a pre-move out walk through and keeps all your deposit, not telling you how it was spent within 21 days, they owe you deposit + deposit x 2 (so 3x deposit). I claimed she owed me that. Truly, we firmly embroiled us into an awful mess, that could have just been avoided if she'd said "Hey, give me 1 month rent to cancel. I'd say 'cool beans'" but she's an idiot so there we were in well-broiled mess. (I know. embroiled != to well broiled.)
So today, we sat before an honorable judge, after an hour of somewhat fruitful mediation (more on that later). I was asking for 4k and change. She was asking for 9k and change. I honestly had very little expectation of seeing money. I just didn't want to pay a landlord who was being both greedy, stingy, shitty, petty, and bad at her job. I really didn't want to roll over and play dead when a bully came around. I'll wrap this all up though: We both owe money! Which was way better than me owing her 9k and her owing me nothing. The only thing sweeter will be if my ex-boyfriend decides to not be utterly manure-like and will help me pay that half of that month of rent. We'll see. I don't have high hopes, but maybe he will turn over a new leaf.
Best of all, I got to tell her how I felt during mediation. We were trying to come to an agreement, meet in the middle, monetarily. But in it, I got to say, "One thing that I really hope that comes from all this, is that you learn to be a better landlord from all this, that you don't put future tenants through this." I told her she should add a lease-break clause to her lease and that she should stop communicating like a bully, threatening and icy. I got to tell her that California law requires certain things from her as a landlord and she needs to do them. This isn't a job that she can just sit back and count fat-stacks coming in (did not use those exact terms). And, boy howdy, it felt good to tell her she wasn't doing her job well and that she made my life miserable. I think perhaps that's called closure.
Who knows where we go from here. I go to the couch with a glass of wine to celebrate. I feel good. I feel months of weight sloughed off my back and my neck and my spine and my shoulders. I feel vindicated for fighting this. I feel glad to know I didn't let a shitty person win.
I also retrieved some of my groove. Some days, I really question where the fuck the old spunky me went? She used to be so sure of herself, so mouthy, so headstrong and sure. These days, that girl vacates the premises a lot. But today she brought her full force. She reminded me that I am not someone to be fucked with. It may take a while. It may require me to summon all the powers of my pettiness and vindictiveness; it may demand that I really just say "Fuck you and the horse you rode in on" without worry of the consequences. It's exhausting, and it sure feels good. Anyway. Great success. Also, the county court clerk looked very fly. Good sense of style. I usually think collared shirts with a white collar look tacky (probably due to Office Space and Lumbergh) but he has made me reconsider that opinion. Also, also. I am just floored by the good-natured attitude of everyone at the court house. I expected them to be grouchy and tired but they were all so helpful and pretty cheerful. What a rush.