Tuesday, May 13, 2014

One surreal afternoon at a rental property on Spring Street.

There was a weird occurrence about a week ago. At 3:00 a.m., an ambulance and three fire trucks loudly converged on the rental property directly across the street. I was awakened, expecting the meth lab to blow at any minute. Why else would there be three trucks? But I went back to sleep, and forgot about it.

Yesterday, an ambulance, single fire truck and police car arrived there around 2:00 p.m. Eventually they left, with the policeman staying longer than the other two. An hour and a half later, I looked outside and saw a van-like vehicle out in the middle of the street, angling to back in toward the house. In due time, two men who could have been Jehovah's Witnesses or undertakers unloaded a gurney, then a body bag.

Into the rental property they went, and then out they came again, with the body bag now filled. It was heaved onto the gurney, strapped down, and loaded back into the van. They drove off.

It was surreal, especially since I was preparing to walk down the street and preside over an important meeting at Bank Street Brewhouse.


Sheri Kelly said...

Goes to show that your assumptions are not correct. The smoke detectors kept going off and they could not get them to stop in the middle of the night a week ago and the teenagers that lived there called the Fire Department to come get them to stop. Batteries were installed improperly.
The body bag that was carried out 2 days ago cantained an elderly man that had lived there a number of years, a good man that had not missed a day of work in over 19 years and when he didn't show up for work on Monday morning and they called the landloard to let them in and found him dead. NOT drug related he had cancer and his lungs had collasped. The people that live in that house are a hard working couple who are raising the wife's teenage sister and handicapped brother becasue they lost their parents young. It's a SHAME to see assumptions like these spread out there for people to see and believe.

The New Albanian said...

Thanks for the explanation.

NewAlbanianMan said...
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NewAlbanianMan said...

There' no heat or anger in my words, as you didn't know the situation, but the man in the body bag was my best friend for more than 42 years, Joe Zink. He was 53, and we met on the first day of the 7th grade. He was a hardworking man, and had the first sick day of his entire working life, (which began at the age of 13 when he started working for his father's business, Zink & Son's Towing and Recovery Specialists, a job he held until the company went out of business), three days after being diagnosed with Stage 3 lung cancer.

17 years ago, shortly before the family business went under, Joe went to work for my uncle, Bob Pullen, at Apex Trailer. He began as a driver and worked his way up to pretty much run the parts department, though not officially. Again, he never missed a day except for a couple days for the funerals of two of his 3 brothers, and his father's and step-father's services.

He died peacefully in his sleep.

While it's true that when we were younger men, we partied and we partied hard. There wasn't much we didn't try, and some of what we tried we tried more than once...way, way, way, more.

But, Joe hadn't had anything stronger than a shot of whiskey in almost 20 years. He couldn't risk failing a drug test, and wouldn't take that risk. He grew up, as we, (well, most of us), do and left the pleasures of youth behind him. Again, though we partied like true Bohemians, he NEVER missed a day of work until diagnosed with the cancer that is most likely what killed him.

His landlord, who also worked for my uncle, is who found Joe. Joe was excited to be returning to work that Monday morning after being off work for two weeks, and when he didn't show, they knew something must be wrong. It was.

Joe didn't live in that shit hole across from you because he didn't work his ass off and earn a decent living. He did both, his income putting him, let’s just say, in the mid-middle class. But he lived in that shit hole apartment, (and went all last summer without AC because he didn’t want to push his land lord to provide him with at least a window unit), and drove that crappy-ass old blue and silver Chevy pickup, (which had no power steering….try driving THAT back and forth to work every day!), and he did it all by his choice. He lived life that way…HIS way, and he lived there because he supported quite a few people. I wasn't one of them, (My wife and I do just fine), and I won't name names because it's no one's business, but Joe supported a couple folks with damn near every dime he made and he'd done so for years.

You would have liked and admired him if you’d known him, Roger. In all the years I’ve known him I have yet to hear a single person say a bad thing about him, and that’s the gospel truth, bud. How many people like that are there?
Again, I bear you no ill will at all. You seriously had no idea what the truth was, and brother, I could easily have been in your shoes.

But, this has taught me a lesson, one I thought I’d learned a long time ago, and that’s to not be so quick to judge on outward appearances. 
My apologies if this is a but disjointed, but I’ve had a rough week since last Monday.

PS…we buried Joe yesterday.

~Chaos Cendra~ said...
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~Cendra~ said...

Wow, how sick can you be to post pictures of the deceased? For your information I am the one who called the fire department, and I am sorry if I woke an arrogant @$$ like you up, but the safety of my family always come first over the thought that some one might wake up. Also for your information a-hole I spent that entire night wide awake due to the alarms going off. As for Joe he was the best neighbor anyone could ask for. He was quite and polite and stayed out of everyones' business unlike some nosy busy body like yourself. If you ever have a problem with what goes on in a house that has nothing to do with you, please feel free to come talk to me any time you decide to be a man and talk face to face instead of trolling people behind the safety of the internet. Have a fantastic week regardless of your own rudeness, and enjoy this memorial weekend!