Tag Archives: losing the security deposit

That One Time We Got Locked Out (Or, Thanks Officer Friendly, I didn’t need my security deposit back anyway)

17 Jun

The above video has nothing to do with this story other than the fact that the police are involved, but it still makes me giggle. You’re welcome.

Back in college, I lived in a studio apartment above a bowling alley. The entrance I used to get upstairs was a security door on the side of the building. I lived on the third floor, so I’m sure you can imagine what a trek those stairs were, especially when drunk. At the time, I was working part time for T-Mobile, going to class, and was in a relationship with Baltimore (we’ll call him Baltimore since that’s where he lives and I don’t like naming names). We had been together for a few months by then, and since we were long distance we’d split time on weekends between Baltimore and Philly. Because I was working retail, Baltimore would hang out at my apartment while I worked. Because there was only one key to the security door of my building and it couldn’t be copied, I would leave my house keys when I went to work so he wasn’t doomed to stay in the house all day.

One particular Saturday night, I worked a closing shift. I remember getting home tired and mildly cranky, but excited I’d get to see the boy and relax. I called him from the car, letting him know I was home since he had to come downstairs to let me in – the bowling alley wasn’t high tech enough for an intercom system. He greeted me at the door with a smile, and we started up the steps. Up three flights of wooden stairs was a long hallway, and at the end of it was my apartment door. No sooner did we hit the beginning of that hallway did I hear “FUCKING MOTHERFUCKER.” See, the door to apartment number 8 was a little tricky. Because the door was so goddamn old, it had kind of a strange lock on it – in order for it to stay unlocked, you push a little button next to the knob on the inside. If you didn’t push the button, the door would need to be opened from the outside with the key. That night, Baltimore had forgotten this minor detail (as I had once or twice in the past on my own) and gone downstairs behind me to let me in, and didn’t think to leave the door open or push the button on the knob. We were locked out.

My first thought was to go downstairs to call my rental office. When no one answered the emergency line there, Baltimore suggested I go down to the bowling alley to see if they had the landlord’s direct number. As it turned out, they did. I called him, and he was fairly rude in telling me he was an hour away and if the rental office didn’t call me up, I could simply wait until the next morning to be let back into my place. By rude, I mean he was a raging dickhole. Fed up with the lack of action, Baltimore offered to attempt to kick the door in. Tired and hungry, I relented, figuring it was worth a shot. After a few solid kicks, we decided to call the police to see if they could help. He was barefoot and avoiding injury was key.

Two officers showed up and the four of us brainstormed. The police said they could call the fire department to have them put a ladder up to the building so I could climb over the rail of my deck and climb through the window, which we were almost certain was open. After much debate, I decided I would rather try to find another way, mainly because I felt really dumb having to call the fire department to my home, lights and sirens, simply because my boyfriend accidentally locked us out. One of the nice policemen said “Well, I could kick it in if you want. Should swing right open.” Since he was wearing heavy boots and a badge, I figured why not?

Officer Friendly prepared himself with a couple of light bounces on the balls of his feet and kicked HARD… however, instead of aiming for the spot right above the lock, which would have hopefully forced the latch open, he went for the center of the door. Now, if this door had been up to code and had been solid wood, he would have most likely broken his foot. Instead, he put his foot DIRECTLY THROUGH THE TOP PANEL OF MY DOOR. His foot got stuck, and we all stood there for a second staring at one another before completely cracking up. After a solid two minutes of laughing our asses off, the officer reached through the hole in the door and unlocked it for me. I made mention of losing my security deposit, and the officer who hadn’t kicked a whole in my door looked at me and said “Well… here’s my card, but good luck getting the department to cover that. You gave permission for use to forcefully enter the apartment.” He wasn’t wrong… I HAD said they could kick it in. We thanked them and went inside, where I called my dad and asked him if he could come over and fix the door.

After explaining to my dad what happened when he arrived, he simply shook his head and said, “Only you.” He patched the hole with a sheet of plywood, a 2″x4″, and some screws. The rental office called me two days later, and I told them what happened. They told me I had to replace the door or I would lost my deposit. My dad came over and hung a new door a couple days later and hung a new door. The landlord stopped over a week later, and told me the door we hung wasn’t a fire door, and we had to buy a new one. I refused, calling L&I within the township to run the situation by them. They agreed the original door on the building couldn’t have been a fire door if the police had been able to destroy it with one single kick. I refused to replace it, and ended up losing my deposit. Thanks, UDPD.

This, ladies and gentlemen, is my life.

XOXO

%d bloggers like this: