What’s Your Apartment Breaking Point?

Like a diva film actress who just found out her dressing room is stocked with yellow M&Ms instead of the requested green ones, I tearily told my husband, “I cannot live like this! How do you expect me to work under these conditions?”

Yup, our washer/dryer is on the fritz. Again. And our new super is always MIA. Attempts to fix it have not gone well (What do you get when a law student tries to fix a washing machine himself? Soggy briefs. Seriously though).

It might not seem like a big deal. There are about a million laundromats on our block. But our in-unit washer/dryer is one of my favorite parts about my apartment. And even though it’s a nice apartment—pretty big, conveniently located near the subway, pizza delivery man knows my name—this little hiccup has put some crazy thoughts in my head, like relocating to *shudder* my parents’ house so I never have to worry about doing laundry again.

So this got me thinking. What other seemingly small things could be the washing machine that broke the camel’s back? I’m not talking major things: If you’re constantly getting mugged leaving your apartment or something, then, yeah, get out of there. I’m talking about the small things that you complain to your friends about over cocktails, and they respond with a, “Dude, seriously? That’s your problem? Quit being such a drama queen!” (Apparently your friends have no patience.)

Here are a few things that on the outside might seem like minor problems to deal with in an apartment. But just try living with them without bursting out in uncontrollable rage like Mommie Dearest who just got ahold of some wire hangers.

The A/C stops working. In the summer, if your A/C stops working, it doesn’t matter if you open all your windows, turn on three fans, open the refrigerator door and camp out in there, and strip down to your Superman underoos. You will be be miserable. And you will run out every time you hear Mr. Softee’s siren song, only to tear up when he refuses to take you with him to the land of Queen Frostine from the Candy Land game, where I’m assuming all ice cream men come from.


You get cockroaches. It happens. And, if you live in an apartment, chances are at some point you’ll see one. And one is all it takes. Because they are just so gross. And then you start to wonder, did I kill them all? Is there a nest (hive? den? spaceship? I don’t know where cockroaches come from) somewhere with baby cockroaches? Will your Twinkies be safe? Will my insurance cover it if I burn down the place to get rid of them?

The fire alarm goes off when you cook. Or even microwave. And you can’t disarm them, because what if someone else in the apartment has just lit a “getting rid of the roaches” fire?

You have “friendly” neighbors. “Hey, I noticed your mail came, so I thought I’d bring it up to you. What did you order from Playboy?” “I know you’re probably super busy, but would you help me change a light bulb, I can’t reach. And while you’re here, can you open this jar? And, you’re a doctor, right? What do you think of this mole?” “Howdy, neighbor. I see you like doing naked stretching in the morning, but be careful when you do that exercise. You don’t want to pull something.”

What little thing would be (or has been) your apartment breaking point?

-By Jessica Fiur, News Editor

Photo credit: Andrew Burgess