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BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.

Donuel 14 Aug 18 - 06:59 PM
Senoufou 14 Aug 18 - 07:13 PM
Steve Shaw 14 Aug 18 - 08:13 PM
leeneia 14 Aug 18 - 09:08 PM
wysiwyg 14 Aug 18 - 11:11 PM
Senoufou 15 Aug 18 - 04:00 AM
Donuel 15 Aug 18 - 06:53 AM
DMcG 15 Aug 18 - 07:57 AM
leeneia 15 Aug 18 - 11:02 AM
leeneia 15 Aug 18 - 09:15 PM
Joe_F 15 Aug 18 - 10:10 PM
Rapparee 15 Aug 18 - 10:46 PM
Senoufou 16 Aug 18 - 02:40 AM
Jos 16 Aug 18 - 03:54 AM
Jos 16 Aug 18 - 04:31 AM
leeneia 16 Aug 18 - 12:18 PM
Steve Shaw 16 Aug 18 - 04:35 PM
Donuel 17 Aug 18 - 05:53 AM
Stilly River Sage 18 Aug 18 - 01:37 PM
Senoufou 18 Aug 18 - 01:57 PM
leeneia 18 Aug 18 - 02:57 PM
robomatic 18 Aug 18 - 03:35 PM
Donuel 18 Aug 18 - 03:58 PM
JHW 18 Aug 18 - 04:25 PM
Steve Shaw 18 Aug 18 - 04:27 PM
Senoufou 18 Aug 18 - 05:25 PM
Steve Shaw 18 Aug 18 - 07:45 PM
Joe_F 18 Aug 18 - 08:02 PM
Senoufou 19 Aug 18 - 04:42 AM
Steve Shaw 19 Aug 18 - 09:20 AM
Senoufou 19 Aug 18 - 09:39 AM
Steve Shaw 19 Aug 18 - 11:14 AM
Senoufou 19 Aug 18 - 01:01 PM
Steve Shaw 19 Aug 18 - 02:00 PM
Senoufou 19 Aug 18 - 03:08 PM
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Subject: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Donuel
Date: 14 Aug 18 - 06:59 PM

I recently helped our son move into his first private apartment.
It reminded me of some of my early apartments and some my wife helped me remember. Like the one where a dog lived upstairs and how the back porch rained pee.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Senoufou
Date: 14 Aug 18 - 07:13 PM

I moved into a huge shared Edinburgh flat with five other lassies during our second year at Uni. We did nothing but laugh, mess about, dress up in each others' clothes and giggle the entire time we weren't actually studying.
Each of us took it in turn to cook, and some of the results were dire.
It was all lovely and I remember those days with a smile.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 14 Aug 18 - 08:13 PM

In the early seventies I lived for three happy years in a flat in the now-famous Robin Hood Gardens in Poplar, east London. There's a chunk of the flats now preserved forever in the V&A museum. The two long blocks were a classic example of late-sixties brutalist architecture, though the architects had dreamed of their being "streets in the sky." It didn't quite work out that way. The lifts and stairs were isolated and intimidating places to be, though I never saw even a scintilla of trouble there, and you rarely saw anyone else on the "in the sky" walkways. But I had a cracking view of the Thames, with a huge power station by the river, beyond the entrance to the Blackwall Tunnel and over the biggest scrapyard in Europe. The sunrises from my fifth-floor window could be stunning if the morning was calm and the power station was in full flunter. In those days I had no responsibilities save getting to work at my school, a ten-minute walk away. I got married whilst living in that flat, but we moved to leafier climes before we had our kids. By the way, my rent was nine pounds a week, which included heating and electrics and rates. I would never have got that flat without the nefarious exploits of Sister Theresa, the deputy head of my school, who knew how to get me to tell the most outrageous lies down at the housing department with guaranteed corroboration from her if necessary. Happy days they were, they really were.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: leeneia
Date: 14 Aug 18 - 09:08 PM

A young friend of mine, now in graduate school, remarked sadly that life consisted of years of school, then years of work, and she wouldn't get to enjoy herself till retirement.

I thought that sounded pretty grim, so I started listing joys she could look forward to, and one of the first was getting her own place and decorating it how she wanted. Another was finding people to play music with.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: wysiwyg
Date: 14 Aug 18 - 11:11 PM

6th floor pine cabin built atop an urban apartment building's roof. Cool eh. Sure. Especially in winter. No caulking and no insulation and no window putty glazing left. It was never intended for year round use and it never met any building code, being a DIY instead of via the city of Chicago permit process. Know your local alderman!

I used to toss garbage sacks of laundry down to the street. None ever burst nor did I ever hit an unwary pedestrian. Wish I could da throwed em back up, too. Six flights is no joke!

A roommate there tried to kill me and barely missed. She also turned on the gas oven and tossed all the knobs to the sidewalk. I pushed her out into the stairwell before she could light the 2nd match. The first had been used to start a bathroom fire where she'd trapped my dog behind the potty.

Fun times!

~S~


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Senoufou
Date: 15 Aug 18 - 04:00 AM

We had a great mix of students in that big flat. Two mathematicians (one a Chinese lass), a medical student, a scientist and two French/Linguists.

It must have been almost Victorian times, because we honestly never ever got drunk, no-one smoked, no-one ever had a man stay overnight, and we never saw any drugs.

What's more, we kept that flat quite clean and tidy!

Miraculous really, but quite true.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Donuel
Date: 15 Aug 18 - 06:53 AM

Six flights yikes.

All these places are indeed closely related to the mix of people who resided there.   I Remember more about the glorious apartments than the humble ones. I also learned living too near the zoo can be hazardous.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: DMcG
Date: 15 Aug 18 - 07:57 AM

My second student flat was not bad, except for the incredibly small kitchen. Once you allowed for the sink, cooker and cupboards there was approximately 2.5 ft by 4 ft floor space. It is definitely one person at a time and if the flap on the cupboard was open, no one could get in or out.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: leeneia
Date: 15 Aug 18 - 11:02 AM

Wysiwig, that roommate was a nightmare! What did you do about her?


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: leeneia
Date: 15 Aug 18 - 09:15 PM

How fondly I remember my first apartment. Up a wooden stair that hadn't been painted since 1920. Into a little living room with linoleum on the floor. The antique fainting couch, the red curtains, the blue desk. The central light with its white Japanese lantern.

Best of all, no crabby mother, no bickering siblings.

Ah, youth.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Joe_F
Date: 15 Aug 18 - 10:10 PM

In 1960, in a steam-heated apartment on Beacon Hill, Boston, my roommate noticed that one of the radiators seemed to have the drain end higher than the inlet end. Not so! The radiator was properly installed, but the floor sloped.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Rapparee
Date: 15 Aug 18 - 10:46 PM

In the first apartment in which I paid rent I slept on the floor. One evening one of my roommates burned his dinner -- I was taking a shower at the time and when I left the bathroom it was like a tear gassing. He was Nigerian and his meal, shared with four friends, was, um, highly spiced.

My nephew shared a room in Japan with a couple other guys; they would activate a lightstick, cut off one end, and pour it out their window and onto the grass below. They finally stopped because their place was too easily identified by the Peace Flag they used as a ceiling drapery. This wouldn't have caused much comment, but they were in the Marine Corps at the time and living in Marine barracks.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Senoufou
Date: 16 Aug 18 - 02:40 AM

Ha Rap, I live with one of those, and he 'tear-gasses' our kitchen regularly. The fumes from his Spicy Horror make the cats cough and choke.
When I moved to Glasgow, I rented a room in a rather manky flat while I waited to find a place to buy. The live-in landlady was young and quite attractive, and every evening a procession of various seedy-looking blokes came and went. I often encountered one in the kitchen while I was making some supper.
It was ages before it dawned on me what the landlady's 'profession' was. She was nice though, and quite kind. Her name was Eunice - rather posh really.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Jos
Date: 16 Aug 18 - 03:54 AM

A single room in a small single-storey stone built house in France. A stone floor, a bed, table and chair, a sink, and a little wood-burning stove for heat and/or cooking.
The loo was just a hole in the ground in a little outhouse off the yard at the back - not so good in winter when the night-time temperature went down to minus 15C, but much better in summer when the nightingales were singing.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Jos
Date: 16 Aug 18 - 04:31 AM

Thinking back, I realise there was also one of those big French wooden cupboards, and a recess behind the stove where the firewood was stacked.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: leeneia
Date: 16 Aug 18 - 12:18 PM

Sounds charming, Jos, except for the loo.

I envy you the nightingales.
=========
I once dated a guy who had a roommate from Indonesia. The Indonesian kept a pot of food going at all times. He would put raw eggs in, and after a while there would be a hard-cooked egg in there, with the shell completely dissolved away.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 16 Aug 18 - 04:35 PM

"...when I left the bathroom it was like a tear gassing."

I've been accused of that meself many times. I can't help it if people ignore my warning that they should give it twenty minutes if I were them...


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Donuel
Date: 17 Aug 18 - 05:53 AM

lol teargassing. I remember a Chinese roomate who would 'cure' raw meat on the desk.

Beacon Hill was expensive in the 80's. Didja go to BC?

In a posthumous apartment for the Pharoh they have found 3200 lbs of aged cheese in a giant open bowl that was thousands if years old


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Stilly River Sage
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 01:37 PM

I had several years of house sitting or staying in low-cost places (like the downstairs of a large 2-story house on a lakefront). At that later place I would sometimes hear several distinct thumps on the floor meaning the woman upstairs needed help. Sometimes to rush up to be present to calm down her psychotic son (he finally got medications, after a number of these episodes) and sometimes to help round up the pigs if they got out of the pen behind the house.

I worked seasonally for the federal government in several jobs and was in a crew house for part of that time. As the only woman, I was put in a room at the back, opposite a restroom, with stairs up to the attic where the trail crew and wilderness guards stayed when they were out of the woods. This had been the older district headquarters building until they built a new one out front, and my room had once been a kitchen, so I had cupboards, counter space, and a sink, though I had to hike around to the other part of the building to use the refrigerator. Sometimes we had visiting scientists staying in that front area and one had to be sure to label their food clearly, especially the frozen stuff, and be sure it was well-wrapped because you would often times find frozen birds or rodents or other small animals temporarily housed in the freezer.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Senoufou
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 01:57 PM

Before I purchased a flat in Glasgow's Partick area, and after I left Eunice's flat, I lived in a bedsit where there were several Highland/Island lassies. They all spoke Gaelic, and seldom English. Some were from Harris or Lewis, and Janet, the one I taught with, was from Skye.
This was off Byres Road (Belmont Street)

The lassies were great, and often roasted a whole goose or pressure-cooked great lumps of mutton, all brought down from various crofts.
One evening, a huge river of goose fat flowed from the oven and oozed down the steps. (They are very greasy birds)
I fetched Robina and Janet,and they scraped up the fat from the floor, but saved it for later. (No waste where they came from!)

They held caelidhs upstairs nearly every Saturday, and many islanders from all over Glasgow arrived, each man bearing a bottle of whisky. The singing was lovely, but they always thumped the floor with their feet during the choruses. Each song seemed to have dozens of verses. My light fitting was swinging from the ceiling in time with the thumps.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: leeneia
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 02:57 PM

Fascinating, Senoufou!


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: robomatic
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 03:35 PM

The first full night I was in Anchorage I was put up at the home of an Orthodox Jewish family with a little kid. Friday night I had the couch and the little one ran around with the remote turning on the television real loud and since it was the Sabbath no adult could adjust it and the young'un hadn't reached the age of reason. So I slept with the unit blaring. Then I had a week in a cute single room cabin on the east end of town house-sitting for an artist on vacation. The night she left all her artist friends passed a joint around the fire, quite legal at the time but I couldn't inhale. Then I rented a lowest floor apartment in the 'ghetto' area of downtown Anchorage. The room above was occupied by a late-night bartender at one of the hotter strip joints. He'd come home about 2 AM and turn his phone to speaker, max out the volume and giggle to the dial-tone.
I'll skip over the shared house where the men cooked and the woman hunted and chewed, the cabbie with the Castro convertible, the native who saw spirit heads, the convicted killer ("and some, presumably, are nice people.")


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Donuel
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 03:58 PM

Robo you could write better stories from memory than David Kelly.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: JHW
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 04:25 PM

lets we forget


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 04:27 PM

"...lived in a bedsit where there were several Highland/Island lassies.... The lassies were great..."

You lived in a bedsit with a load of collies...?


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Senoufou
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 05:25 PM

Well, I could have called them 'teuchters' but that's rather pejorative.
I honestly did enjoy getting to know all the people I met in the various bedsits, flats and apartments I rented. All so different, but interesting and nearly all of them delightful.
I was usually the one who liked cleaning, washing up and tidying, so I was often to be seen wielding the mop or the toilet brush!
Also, I had no family at all nearby, and valued the friendship/company very much.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 07:45 PM

Lasses (girls) vs lassies (collies) is what I meant! Duh...


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Joe_F
Date: 18 Aug 18 - 08:02 PM

Well, lassie is the the diminutive of lass, and I dare say that's how the dog got her name.

Donuel: I dare say, also, that Beacon Hill was expensive in the '80s, but when I lived there (1959-60) the Charles St. side was affordable by students, nurses, and the like. I was at Harvard till I flunked out, and then at MIT Lincoln Lab.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Senoufou
Date: 19 Aug 18 - 04:42 AM

Duh to you too Steve! Heh heh, it implies a rather odd implication to 'I love a lassie, a bonnie bonnie lassie' (Sir Harry Lauder)

When I moved down to Norwich, I again searched for a house to buy, and rented a flat meanwhile. It had a very sloping floor (subsidence) and the house next door was evidently a drug den. Weird-looking people would totter up to the door bearing suspicious items and mysterious plastic bags, and emerge later with zombie-like expressions.

I asked the Police if they knew, and they replied that yes, of course they did (!!) but preferred to let it continue as 'they knew where all the druggies would roll up and it made things simpler'. But they never raided it.
My later work with prisoners revealed that this address was very well-known all over Norwich and was like Aladdin's cave inside, waist-high in stolen goods and people doing heroin (heating it up on tinfoil and injecting it) all over the floor.

Ha! I've certainly seen life haven't I?


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Aug 18 - 09:20 AM

Bejaysus, now you've piqued me into investigating this lass-lasses lassie-lassies business. After half an hour of strenuous googling and looking at all manner of dictionaries, and even the Robbie Burns website, I've come to the crystal-clear conclusion that it's a complete minefield. If you want to talk about more than one "bonny wee lassie" then you're justified in spelling the plural "lassies" without risk of being accused of talking about handsome small collies. But if you want to talk about more than the one lad rolling his lass in the new-mown hay then I reckon it should be "lads and lasses." Dammit. I hope Nigel isn't reading this bloody thread...


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Senoufou
Date: 19 Aug 18 - 09:39 AM

Hee hee I'm glad I've provoked you into spending half an hour a-googling Steve!

For what it's worth, I reckon 'lass' is a term used all over the north of England as well as Scotland.
Lassie would be more of an endearment or sentimental use of the term.

I used to weep buckets into my Uni (twee?) scarf hearing that folk song, "Will ye go lassie go? And we'll all go together..." I don't think it was about a chap trying to train his sheepdog.

But more than one lad rolling his lass in the new-mown hay would surely be termed an orgy?


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Aug 18 - 11:14 AM

There's been a lot of squabbling over the origin of that song, long-claimed by the McPeake family. I heard it in folk clubs, etc., dozens of times, generally rendered as a muddy, interminable dirge inviting a complete loss of audience ensemble and a load of cloth-eared "harmonising." It's a time-to-go-for-a-wee song.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Senoufou
Date: 19 Aug 18 - 01:01 PM

Well, I was only just seventeen Steve, rather romantic, far from home and a bit vulnerable. The song seemed so poignant and the tune cut at my heart.


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Steve Shaw
Date: 19 Aug 18 - 02:00 PM

It was like that the first few times ANY of us heard it, Eliza!


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Subject: RE: BS: Remembering our outrageous early apts.
From: Senoufou
Date: 19 Aug 18 - 03:08 PM

Ah that's reassuring Steve.


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Mudcat time: 19 October 5:44 AM EDT

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