I have had it with one of my cats. Blackfoot has suddenly decided that he isn't being fed enough and doesn't like the dry food he's been eating all his life, and now my dinner table is under siege. Tonight I made myself a nice (if somewhat dull) meal of sauteed chicken and green peas, but trying to eat it was a nightmare. Cut off piece of chicken. Throw cat on floor. Put chicken in mouth. Chew fast, before throwing cat on floor. Pick up forkful of peas. Drop forkful of peas to throw cat off table. Try chicken again. Begin to look like maniac throwing punches (not, of course, intended to connect) at cat who is now trying to sneak up from the other side of the table. Give up. Saute cat. Damn, I'm NOT going to resort to eating my dinner in the bathroom - I already eat my midnight ice cream in there to avoid having to stop every six seconds to throw all three cats off the table. Enough is enough.
And yes, of course, I've tried feeding Blackfoot different food. That's another nightmare. In order to keep Gypsy from eating his food, I have to get Gypsy out of the upstairs bathroom, get Blackfoot into the upstairs bathroom, and then shut the door so Blackfoot can eat...which has to be done very quickly because otherwise Tarbaby decides that HE wants in the bathroom because the other two are so damn fascinated with it. Talk about herding cats...I suppose the answer to this is to feed all of them the soft food all at once, but that gets awfully damn expensive. Anybody want three somewhat used cats? One of whom is VERY used, being now about 450 years old? Anybody?
So, as Sarah has already mentioned, we had a mugging under my bedroom window a couple of days ago. That was scary. I mean, when I'm acting, I come home late quite often - you do a show, you go out and have a couple of beers, you get home around 12:30 or 1 in the morning. And now Sarah has taken to calling Joshua whenever she comes home (I mean here, as opposed to her own place in Brooklyn) so he can either meet her at the bus stop or stand in the doorway when she comes up in a taxi. (This is an EXCELLENT idea.)
Damn it, I've lived in this neighborhood for nearly 40 years, and I've NEVER been afraid to be out alone at any hour of the day or night. And some of those hours were fairly bizarre - not to mention the fact that if you were looking some thirty years back you would have seen me happily coming home on my hands and knees after closing a bar at 4 am. One classic night when I was living on Jane and Hudson and my local joint was right across the street, I crawled home and fell asleep in the elevator. Our super informed me the next day that he saw me in there but didn't want to bother me because I looked comfortable. Ah, the good old days.
This is nuts. The Village has always had non-residents coming in to drink and party, for heaven's sake. And you'd get the occasional fistfight or something, the way you do with drunks. These new characters, however, seem intent on just making trouble. We've had a 25% increase in the crime rate in our precinct, and that has nothing to do with the quality of life infractions - like people pissing in the street and worse - I have neighbors who've found human feces on their doorsteps. Another neighbor has a front stoop where they like to hang out and do drugs, and she has flower pots on it. They tear up the flowers. And of course they yell and scream in the street at all hours, but then, you know, this is New York. You can sleep through that.
And we can't use the piers. There was a huge renovation of our pier a few years back, and it's just lovely, and would be a wonderful spot to go look at the water on a hot summer night - but they've taken it over, and now it's too dangerous.
The thing about the pier is interesting. Before it got renovated, it was a hangout for gays and transvestites and hustlers and all of that, but we used to go and watch the sunset, or walk out on a summer night, because they had their own agenda and weren't in the least interested in what we were up to. Nobody was bothering us, and we weren't bothering them. So now we have this gorgeous park out there which is filled with people who want to beat and rob us. What is that?
I don't go to someone else's neighborhood and piss on their doorsteps. I hang out in the East Village a fair amount because it's full of theatres where I'm working or my friends are working. Now, it wouldn't occur to me to wander around the East Village peeing on people's doorsteps or ruining their flowerpots and trying to rob them, for heaven's sake.
Nobody says these people can't come in the neighborhood. Nobody is waiting at the Path station on Christopher (which is where they all seem to come from) to arrest them as they get off the train. All we're asking is to live in peace, quiet and safety in our own place - is that too much? It seems to be...