Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Fixing a hole

It's 11 pm, Mix Tape Girl has gone to sleep. I wait for the pear cobbler that she put in before she went to bed to finish. The timer she has ticks away, tick, tick, tick, tick, tick. I go into our bedroom to grab something. MTG is sound asleep. I stand and watch her sleep for a minute. She looks so tired.

The days seem to drag by. It's been so long since I posted. Things changed, circumstances different. I'm at a new job now after trying to start my own work. That didn't work out as planned. Too much overhead to get a clean start. We've both had lost our jobs, and looked together for employment. We found a job at the same company, just different departments. Doing things that I thought I'd never be part of.

I listen to people all day, tell me their sob stories. Some are genuine some are not. I foreclose peoples houses now. I have say whether they stay or they go. I hear every story that comes in, most are frightened to be close to being homeless and with just cause but some want to fight. Rarely anyone does, only rarely do you get a fighter. I see the front lines of what's happening to a good part of America. But it doesn't make sense. It's not the banks fault per say, it's not the mortgage broker or the borrowers. It's everyone's fault. I sit and listen on the phone all day story after story. Most people are preyed upon, the unintelligent, the elderly, the just plain stupid. Same story, I can't pay my loan. I look at the loan they're set on an Adjustable Rate Mortgage. That's all there is. "It's a bad loan" I'm told time and again. I agree with them, things like this should have never been allowed to come into existence. But then again no one made them sign the loan papers. Ultimately the responsiblity is the person who signed the loan papers. People just don't want to own up to the fact that being an adult means that you take responsibility for your mistakes. I have to put on a stoic face and pretend that it doesn't bother me though it does. I look at their loans day after day. I hear the same thing. "Give me a fixed rate". I retort, "Why? You have an ARM loan, your payments are $500 a month, you aren't even paying the full interest and you can't afford that, and you're accruing negative amortization. Here's how it works if you want a fixed rate. Your mortgage is $150k. One a fixed rate besides paying the interest just the principal alone is going to be at least $1500 going on what is normal rate of 1% of your principal balance. And that's not including your interest. If you can't afford to pay $500 monthly how are you going to pay $1500 plus?" That usually slaps them with a dose of reality. I don't like to do it but that's my job. You get to stay but you on the other hand don't. It's all numbers just business. And everyting is Obama says.

MTG has it worse, she's on the collections side, past due accounts. People try to dictate to her what they will pay on the loan. Doesn't work that way. Obama says that I don't have to pay my loan. Obama says you will give me a modification with 2% interest. Obama says that I don't owe anything anymore. Little do they know that Obama's plan is only for government backed loans, which few if any of the customers have. She gets yelled at, threatend and called an awful person all day. "How can you live with yourself you miserable wretch, doing this kind of job" she tells me one lady told her today. She is on the verge of tears when we get into the car. She strong, doesn't cry while at work. But she gets more depressed and bitter everyday. It helps for me to listen while she vents.

I turn on the stereo in the car on the way home. Peter Frampton's "Baby I Love Your Way" plays. We listen to it in the background while MTG vents. I tell her about my crazy calls and we find consolation in each other. She clings to my one arm while I drive us home. "This is shit" she says while we enter the highway. "We need to come up with a plan b." I'm working on it in my head, mulling things over. What to do, what to do?

As soon as we get home MTG pounces on me. We make love, and she falls asleep. She always falls asleep first. It's supposed to be the other way around, but I'm used to it now. I get up throw a load of clothes in the washer. I do the dishes while I play Alicia Keys softly in the living room so I don't wake MTG up. A few hours later she emerges groggy hair messy. She's in the mood for something sweet. She cuts up half of a bag of pears I bought and makes a cobbler and puts it in the oven. She gets sleepy before it's done and tells me she's off to bed.

I straighten up the place a little more. I shuffle through some older record albums that I have. I've been in the habit of hanging on the wall in frames as artwork lately, so I pick a few good albums while I wait for the cobbler to hang up. Sgt. Pepper, an Oceanlab mix, Billy Joel 52nd St, and a few others that I have duplicates of and have no problem framing and hanging up. I loose myself in the mindless framing project. The timer goes off that MTG set, it scares the hell out of me cause its loud and sounds awful. I take out the cobbler and set it to cool.

Opening up a cherry 7-up I sit on the couch and stare out the french doors to the patio. It's dark, I see the lime tree swaying a little in the wind. My mind wanders. I try to think of a way to get us out of our work, do something else, but it's just here say. Like MTG tells me, "As much as I hate my job, I hate not having one even more." I tell myself I'll find a way. What to do what to do? I notice a small hole in the weather stripping around the door and stare at it. In my mind the verses come to me. "I"m fixing a hole where the rain gets in, and stops my mind from wandering."