This is what happened after I left the town offices today.
The letter that I’d brought to the town offices the woman at the Health Department had taken from me and photocopied. She had returned the original to me and kept the photocopy and written my phone number right onto the copy that she kept. So I held that original in my hand all the way home.
I entered my building through the back door. Puzzle and I came up the elevator. Now guess who was right there? I don’t usually see anyone from the Housing Authority right there in the hall, but there they were, two guys, really important ones, just the ones I wanted to see. Never mind who these guys were but they were the “right ones” to give this letter to. Or so I figured. Not that I’d actually planned out exactly who the recipients would be. I just figured I’d give it to someone important. These folks were important enough. Not only that, two of them.
What were they doing out in the hall? I don’t know, Inspecting some vacant apartment fairly close to my own.
So they ask what’s in the envelope and I say, “Oh, some writing I did. I left off some paperwork at Town Hall.”
Trust me, they knew. Oh boy, they did. And they knew what was going on right away.
So one of them starts in with the teasing. “Oh yeah, he says, ” Julie’s a writer.” So I’m starting to feel partway put down by this, again, the tokenism, like writers don’t matter, that maintenance guys are far more important in this world cuz they do practical stuff. But I say to myself, “Wait till they see what’s in the envelope.”
I can’t honestly recall if I told them that the Health Department stamped their copy as an official “complaint.” But at any rate, the message got to them.
Folks, I’m positive they got a call. I’ll tell you exactly why.
A guy named D called me within a couple of hours. Okay, I’ll admit I was lying down with Puzzle on the verge of a snooze. He asked me a bunch of questions. I had to explain that the problem was intermittent. He wanted to come over and “test” the water in my own apartment, however, when I went to the sink, the water was hot enough. I tested it myself with my meat thermometer. It was within range, 110-130. I told him that 90% or the time, the water was under 110 degrees.
Did he believe me?
He told me as soon as the water was under 110, to give him a call.
I thought about things. In a way, I felt like i was being accused of being “crazy” or “lying” or maybe “delusional.” On the other hand, maybe D wanted to nab the Housing Authority.
But nabbing the Housing Authority isn’t even necessary. They want to avoid getting nabbed. They are scared of being nabbed. Very. Guess what they did?
They seem to have gotten off their butts finally. Done what should have been done months ago. Yes, months ago. Fixed the darned system, I suppose.
As of tonight, my hot water has never, ever been hotter. I mean, it hasn’t been this hot in ages.
Don’t tell me what I wrote didn’t scare the living daylights out of them.
Now, is what that shrink said true, that my writing degree is “useless”? If you are reading this now, I love you. Bless your hearts. Good night. Writing rocks. I changed the world today.
Let’s keep on changing it. And as I always say,
Never, ever shut up.