you all often amaze me with your simple and elegant responses to situations and it's often easier to be clearheaded when you're on the outside, so help! this has been grinding my gears for some time and i have to do something about it!
i've been in the same apt for 6 years with minimal interaction with our landlord. he is a happy bumbler, so i figure, we keep a low profile we don't bother him, he doesn't bother us. the building is pretty run down and he breaks stuff everytime he tries to 'fix' it, so i prefer to take care of stuff in our unit myself, unless it is too complicated or expensive. here is a prime example: in march, i asked him (in writing) to replace a rotted soap dish in the shower (i had recaulked the moldy tub myself rather than endure his disruption) and replace our broken garbage disposal and to come on tuesday or wed because i was having hte place cleaned wed. he showed up on thursday, took from 10am-3:30pm and broke a pipe in the bathroom (yes, i said shower dish, not sink drain) that flooded the bathroom and ran through to my velvet couch on the first floor, leaving an unbelievable gross mess which he didn't even try to clean up other than blotting with towels. i came to the conclusion that i should have just shelled out the $150 and done it myself, 8 months pregnant. just a few weeks before he claimed there was a bad plumbing leak and i had to move EVERYTHING out of a very packed closet for him to get to it, only for him to say, an hour later, he mismeasured and it was NOT coming from my apt. a month earlier he claimed he needed to come in for a water leak 'inspection'. this is a lot of sudden attention after going 6 years with him coming in maybe a total of 5 times.
otherwise, everyone in the building likes us and they are delighted wtih our new baby. there have been 2 kiddos raised in this bldg now 5 and 3, and another one coming in august! moving isn't an option right now. it's a rent control apt in a great part of the city and a good value even with the disrepair here n there.
since december of 2001, i have had a 'please do not knock, leave us a note or leave deliveries here' sign on my door. one of my dogs was sick and needed to be kept quiet back then. and i decided that i never want to deal with uninvited disturbances anyway, so i've had it up ever since. i'll admit, this is my Thing.
the current incarnation of the sign says "please do not disturb us. we have a newborn baby and get little sleep. we have barking watchdogs. kindly leave deliveries on this table. we appreciate your understanding" even with all the shipments, there has not been a single knock, even by our obtuse mailman who never heeded the request before. people 'get' babies.
except, suddenly, the landlord has been knocking EVERY FEW DAYS. i am catnapping with her or feeding or pumping or diapering and i see red when it happens because i can't even just go and say GO AWAY if nothing else. can the sign be any clearer?the second time, I took her off and went out there in just my nursing bra and yelled across the courtyard, "I AM BREASTFEEDING. unless the building is on FIRE, you don't ever have a legitimate need to knock on my door. you can leave a note." I htought that might be shocking enough to be memorable. and he is STILL doing it, but hasn't left a note!
i should add, i had to change the lock on the door over a year ago because he has a bad habit of going into tentants apts when he thinks they aren't home. this has happened to at least 5 current tenants. once my next door neighbor did not answer a knock, and the landlord walked in on him having sex! we reminded him that nobody is obligated to answer the door and that he has to give 24 hour written notice to enter. when i said, you know, i do have sex wtih my husband, and if you walked in we would make you VERY sorry about it. he actually said "you, I wouldn't mind seeing naked." he always says these inappropriate things, like during the most recent visit a sexual quote about a 'stiff member' from a book we had in our bathroom. and told me once 2 tenants in other buildings are suing him for sexual harassment, which he finds absurd. keep in mind he's more a benign twit with alzheimer's than threatening. i think he goes into the apts because he is a bit of a voyeur. he discusses other tenants' living habits, apartments, etc which is also inappropriate.
anyway, i want this moron to go back to just leaving me alone, and i don't want to overblow my response which i fear could create MORE attention rather than less. as i see it, i have 2 options: i could write a not so confrontational short note reminding him that our privacy is important to us and 'i invite you to leave us a written note with your needs and concerns which we will respond to when we are able' blah blah nicey nice kind of thing which is my standard MO but often doesn't get the job done. on the other hand, i consider writing a long letter (coldly factual, not emotional) documenting the full history of his failure to make safety or plumbing repairs in a timely manner (the point being that there is not and has never been an 'emergency' repair done here, he cites 'emergency' for every time there is a conflict about busting into someone's apt), inappropriate sexual comments, as well as the heightened 'need' to access my apartment in the months since i have become pregnant (to suggest that i am being harassed), and cc'ing a copy to the city rent control board, which would protect me to a degree if it escalates because this is a pro-tenant city. i do hate to do this, but...
thoughts, oh objective tribunal?