Thursday, November 8, 2007

Body Odor

Yesterday, I was at work when my wife called me to tell me that there was a gas leak in our apartment building. The gas company had come out to check it out, but concluded that there was nothing wrong. The smell, however, suggested otherwise.

I was concerned, not wanting my wife and kids to get blown up, which I'm sure you can understand. When I got home from work, there were four cop cars in the parking lot and crime scene tape in the foyer. Not good.

Turns out the smell wasn't a gas leak after all, but was caused by the putrefaction of our downstairs neighbor, who apparently had been dead since sometime around Halloween. Whether it was suicide or an OD, we don't know. I asked one of the cops what exactly had transpired, but he was "not at liberty to say."

Tonja put some cinnamon oil in a pot of boiling water to mask the rising stench of death from downstairs, while I left to attend a party for those of us who had worked on this year's Austin Film Festival. At the party, I told my friend Jeter about what had happened. He said he'd been looking for an apartment, and wondered if the management at our apartment complex might offer a "dead guy discount" if he rented the place downstairs.

Life goes on.

I just got back from an enormously frustrating experience. A few weeks ago, I responded to an ad on Craig's List seeking someone with a "loud, booming voice" to dub another actor's lines in an indie film. I sent in a sound clip of a radio spot I had done for a St. Augustine pawn shop that was fairly booming, and promptly forgot about it. Last week, the film's director (I believe his name is Eric Foreskin), emailed me asking if I wanted to audition. On Sunday, I went to the guy's house, gave a good reading, and seemed to have been given the job, which only paid $100, but seemed like a pretty easy gig. I was scheduled for a rehearsal on Wednesday, then a recording session two weeks after that.

Tonight, I get there, and the guy's being a little weird, telling me he's not sure I've got the right tone for it, and that I need to come back for another audition, after I've done some more practicing. I told him that he'd wasted enough of my time, and basically, to go fuck himself.

That's show biz, I guess.

On a brighter note, I got a good gig writing reviews for a website that pays some decent money, and gives me free reign to write on a number of different topics. I also got a $50 kill fee for a piece I wrote for a local publication concerning the Round Rock Planning & Zoning Commission and their approval of several Planned Urban Developments, or as they like to call them, PUDs. Apparently, the story I submitted wasn't quite what they were looking for.

Too many dick jokes.


806051 said...

Easily the best title of any of your entries. I am reminded of the classic scene in "As Good As It Gets" where Jack Nicholson tells his gay neighbor played brilliantly by Greg Kinnear.

"Never, never, interrupt me, okay? Not if there's a fire, not even if you hear the sound of a thud from my home and one week later there's a smell coming from there that can only be a decaying human body and you have to hold a hanky to your face because the stench is so thick that you think you're going to faint. Even then, don't come knocking. Or, if it's election night, and you're excited and you wanna celebrate because some fudgepacker that you date has been elected the first queer president of the United States and he's going to have you down to Camp David, and you want someone to share the moment with. Even then, don't knock. Not on this door. Not for ANY reason. Do you get me, sweetheart?"

JM Dobies said...

It lingers...

And now it's mixed with the smell of taco vomit from the maintenance guy.

As for the title, I considered "The Dead Next Door," but figured that a reference to an obscure Billy Idol B-side was too arcane even for me...

806051 said...

I've moved into at least one apartment in which the previous inhabitant deleted himself from this life. Apparently, a heroin infused gunshot to the head was the previous paint color in my old living room...which was a lot more colorful than the soul-less primer with which they covered it.