Monday, January 14, 2008

under lock and key

so, all of a sudden i have started locking my door of the first time in my whole life.

i didn't have keys the entire time i lived in bloomington. i am just now learning to drive and had always used a combination lock for my bike, so for the first 18 years of my life i had no keys. none. i am not sure that we even have a key to the back door of my house.

when i moved to new york, every roommate i ever had complained about how i wouldn't lock the door to our apartment. partly, i would forget. but, there was a lot of times i would think to lock the door and then choose not to. something about locking it made me uncomfortable.

when i got back from england, my dad came to ohare to pick me up. after the lady at customs asked me annoying questions about my septem piercing and said nothing of my trip to amsterdam within the week. we had bloody maries in the airport bar and headed to my apartment in hyde park to drop off all my luggage. when we got to the building we unloaded all my huge and fucking heavy bags and tried to open the door. my keys couldn't open the initial door to the front of the building. it didn't make any sense. i called my landlord's son, Darian was "chillin on the beach" so he couldn't come let me in. But he let me know that the locks had been changed and he promised to call someone to let me in. it was fucking cold and i hadn't slept at all during that EIGHT HOUR flight and had perioded all over my jeans on the plane and i just wanted to drop my stuff off. finally, after like fifteen minutes, the lady who babysits really rowdy kids on the first floor comes to let us in. she was the only one in the building i ever really talked to. i really like her. she is always complementing me on my tattoos and hanging out gettin really drunk with these vetrans in wheelchairs in front of our building where we don't have a stoop or anything, just a muddy grassless area. anyway, i explain that i hadn't gotten the new key or anything. she lets me know that there had been alot of drama and she was ready to spill.

apparently, her mother was coming over to visit and was attacked in our lobby by two large women with hammers. she didn't really make it sound like a robbery but i am not sure why else you would beat up an old woman with a hammer. my neighbor could hear the noise from her ground floor apartment and came rushing on the scene. she wrestled the hammer away from one of the women and started beating her face in. i guess she got her pretty good since some other people called the cops and there was blood all over the place. the women ran away before the cops came.

the next week, in the building that my windows face, whose windowsills i can touch, a young woman who lives alone was haning out in her apartment. she hadn't locked the door after coming in and someone broke in and started beating her. the attacker tried to rape her and had knocked her almost unconscious before a neighbor who happened by on the way to change his laundry interrupted the attack.

they changed the locks on our front door and put in a camera. but, it doesn't feel like it really makes a difference. i have never felt unsafe really ever. i have definately never lived in a place where i felt like i had to lock my doors while i was in the apartment. i mean, i would be bummed if my stuff got stolen, but honestly not enough to really lock my doors. living in fear is a new feeling, and not one i am used to. i woke up three times last night to noises that weren't anything, but feeling petrified. i was almost asleep just before writing this when i realized i hadn't locked the deadbolt after blake and hannah left.

though, it's not the only reason i hate living alone, getting freaked out and always being alone at night is really really shitty.

and it's like reason 10000 that i really want a dog.

***photos of the keys and locks are from the victoria and albert collection. can you belive these things? do they actually keep people out? or are they a theft deterant because the theives would just steal the fancy ass locks and not need any gold.

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