Saturday, May 27, 2017

Adventures in Slum Living: –Episode 14: 16 Benson Street, Albany is up for rent again

Adventures in Slum Living –Episode 14: 16 Benson Street, Albany is up for rent again

          Do you ever wish you could just drop a subject, really, yet there were still things to say? That's how I feel now. How long can this possibly go on?

         Well guys, I recently learned that 16 Benson Street, Albany, an apartment owned by a man named Wayne Whitney who does not like being called a slum lord and where I lived, much to my shame, discomfort, and horror, is now up rent again. Apparently someone did live there. Apparently they felt the same way I did and then moved out.

           Alas! Now I’ve called Wayne Whitney such names as “idiot” and “lying dipshit” and “incompetent” here before, and part of it is that if he were to actually fix his apartments and treat people honestly and fairly he might be able to keep tenants longer and make more money. It would be win-win for everyone. Alas! Much of Wayne Whitney’s thinking is done by his limbic region, the so-called “lizard brain,” and therefore complex concepts like planning for the long term are difficult for him, it seems.

           I read the ad and on one hand, while I was not surprised to learn that he had failed to keep another tenant, I was puzzled by the fact that it was advertised as “wheel chair accessible.” When I lived there, it absolutely was not, and I have no idea why or how anyone would get a wheel chair down an alley with uneven stones, up a flight of porch stairs, through a locked door that, if I remember correctly is too high for a person in a wheel chair to reach, and then up an entire flight of very narrow, winding stairs that lack a platform where a person in a wheelchair, should that person somehow drive a highly motorized wheelchair up a 45 degree stair case, could level off, sit upright, pull their keys from their pockets and put them in the door lock.

           Perhaps he expects the wheelchair bound future tenants to be so highly motorized that they can speed up all these narrow winding stairs and do it at such high speed that they will be able to crash through the door when they reach the apartment? It is a rather cheap and flimsy door after all, and, as mentioned in a previous blog post, it did fall off once because one had incorrectly installed it.
Or perhaps Wayne did something incompetent once again and pushed the wrong button on the form when running his ad on Craig’s list?

           Or maybe he’s just lying? I’m not sure what gain he expects to get from this lie. It would seem only designed to cause people in wheelchairs who seek an apartment to waste their time before contacting him to (hopefully) get an honest answer that the apartment is not wheel chair accessible?

           Regardless, let’s look at the photos Wayne is running with his ad.


So let’s look at the first four photos from the Craig List ad.


Ha! Ha! Guess what. That’s one of the areas where I did a lot of work and was quite proud of it. When I moved in the door frame you see still had the old hinge left in place with no attempt to improve the frame, the far door that you see had a hole in it, and the wall on the left side still had a lot of holes in it and nail studs and just general ugliness to it. You can see the photos of what it used to look like in early blog posts in this fine series. So . . . 


But alas, short term greed, lack of capital, and just plain stupidity got in the way of that plan, now didn’t it?

            Here’s a few more shots that Wayne is using to sell this ugly place to unsuspecting tenants.

            This one’s kind of interesting.

             We have a window, yet it is blocked by a door so one can’t see it. Why is that way?  Wouldn’t the apartment be more appealing if people were able to see the window and the sun shine in?

               I can only speculate, but if you see a previous post, Wayne Whitney's Wacky Weird Wall Wires you will note that when I lived there, there were some very strange and ugly looking wires on the other side of that unnecessarily opened door. Does anyone want to speculate as to whether or not they are still there?

Also note that the window shades are very high much higher than need be. Please see my previous post on Window Shades. ( )  I do not know if they’ve been repaired or not, but, well, looking at this picture you don’t know either, do you?  Care to bet?

               And to our right, you will see a fuzzy out of focus picture, a close up of a rug and a wall.

              One might speculate that the picture has been framed, perhaps even purposely unfocused to hide blemishes and stains. One has to admit, it is a rather strange picture, isn’t it?

            Another photo, this one shows the room where I spackled all the forgotten nail holes that had been there for years and then planned to paint, but alas, Wayne never delivered the paint he promised.

            BTW, if you rent this place, you may learn that this back porch area is on a different electrical system than the rest of the apartment. If one were to use electricity from the back porch area it would not show up on the bill for the rest of the apartment. Soon after I moved in, because of what I thought was poor communication on Wayne’s part about how to transfer the electricity from the previous tenant to me, the power in my apartment went out. It took me a few days to get it restored, a major inconvenience and I lost a lot of food too.

           But I did learn that the back porch was on a different bill. As at the time Wayne and I had just started our business relationship and I had no malice against him, I informed him of this problem. His response? He just laughed and said “Oh well, I guess someone else is paying for your electricity then,” and did nothing.

That’s the kind of guy Wayne is. What kind exactly? You figure it out, or ask him. 

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