in which i will probably contract rabies

last night after the rock show, andy and i arrived at my apartment at two a.m. to find a blue pickup truck in my parking space.  a mustachioed guy was throwing some stuff into the bed of the truck.  “i have two more loads!” he yelled when i drove up and rolled down the window.  “i’ll be a few minutes!”

“okay.  are you moving in or out?” i asked, figuring that if he was moving in this would be a good time to tell him about how he was parked in my space.

“out!” he said.

oh.  andy and i parked our cars in the street and went inside my apartment to wait.  forty-five minutes later we went back downstairs to move our cars.  my next-door neighbor and her two dogs were standing outside in the alley, right where the pickup truck had been.  we talked to her for a few minutes, as her dogs sniffed at the garbage.  i never really talk to any of my neighbors, so it was interesting to hear about the apartment goings-on from someone else’s perspective.

“did you hear that a possum died right above my bathroom?” she said.  “i kept hearing all these scratching noises in the walls.  they stopped eventually , but i didn’t know the dead possum was there until it bled through the ceiling.”

“are you serious?” i said.

“yeah.  the maintenance guy didn’t believe me about the scratching until i called him to come and get the dead bloody possum out of my ceiling.  it was about the size of her,” she said, pointing to one of her dogs, “and its tail was like two feet long.”

“oh my god.”

“i know.  the maintenance guy said that there’s nothing he can do because he can’t figure out how they get in.  there’s not an opening small enough on the roof or something.  did you ever hear any scratching noises?” she asked me.

“yes!” i said.  “i’ve been hearing them for months!  i keep thinking something’s going to die in the wall.”

“i bet it is,” she said.  “you’re probably next.”she and her dogs went back inside and andy and i went out the back gate to move our cars.  but when we pulled up into the alley, the blue pickup truck was back, parked in my space, right where we had been standing thirty seconds before.

“what are the chances of that?” andy said as he got out of his car.

“i know,” i said.  “he must have driven up as soon as we walked away.”

we went inside and down the hall to look for the guy.  the door to one of the apartments was partially open, but there were no lights on inside.  “should i knock?” i said to andy.  “what if this isn’t his place?”  as soon as i said it, the door opened and the guy stood there, staring at us.

“i need my parking space now,” i said.

he glared at us.  “i have two more loads.  they’re heavy and it’s extremely laborious to carry them too far.”

“it’s three o’clock in the morning,” andy said.  “we need to get to bed now.  can we switch our cars out real quick?  you can park behind us.”

“fine.  whatever,” he said, and stormed off down the hall.  we followed him.  all three of us got into our cars and backed out of the alley.  when we reached the street, the guy was going so fast he nearly ran into me.  he slammed hard on the brakes, his rear bumper just inches away from the front of my car.  he peeled out down the street and around the corner.

andy and i drove up into my parking space.  i parked as far forward as i could to make room for all three cars, but the guy didn’t pull up behind us.  we went upstairs and looked out the window.  the blue pickup truck was on the other side of the back gate, parked in someone else’s driveway.  i wrote down his license plate number just in case.

i hope someday a giant dead bloody possum falls on his head.