The furnishings and the amount of rent I’m paying are not the issue, the flat was not let in a clean fit state. The flat should’ve been properly cleaned before I’ve moved in, this is not an issue with improving the decor, the walls are filthy and require cleaning properly and would still need to be cleaned properly regardless of whether I paid more rent and had kept the place furnished.
I still do not understand why no action was taken before I moved in. It is clearly apparent from the inventory, even without my additions, that the flat was not adequately cleaned. If the previous tenant did not clean it adequately why was not money taken from their deposit to clean it?
Then of course after I moved in, my attempts to address the problem were ignored for three weeks until I contacted you. Now we are at a stage where I’ve been here for over a month and the landlady has only just been informed that there is a problem and cannot now afford to solve it.
I do not intend to suffer because Bairstow Eves has not been looking after this property properly. If the landlady cannot afford to have the flat cleaned then I will be forced to deduct the cost of having the place cleaned from the next month’s rent. This problem is not going to go away and unless you have another suggestion, I will just have to take matters into my own hands.
I have received a telephone call from your Landlady this morning in relation to the cleaning issues raised. I'm afraid that she is not in a position financially to undertake any cleaning to the walls.
You specified as a condition of moving in that you would like the furniture removed and a reduction on the rent, which the Landlady agreed to do, but i'm afraid that she does not wish to undertake any work in terms of the decor at this time.
Further to my visit to the flat last week, I have left messages for your Landlady to come back to me regarding the cleaning to the walls which we discussed, however she has not yet come back to me.
I have written a letter to her and will await her response.
My response was...
Thanks for keeping me updated with the situation. Please let me know as soon as you've contacted the landlady, naturally as this situation has persisted for a month now I'm keen to see it resolved as soon as possible.
As a mark of good faith, I'll see to it that the money for this month's rent is transferred today.
I have made several adjustments to the inventory and would like to express in writing how dissatisfied I was with the condition of 6 Johnstone Court when I moved in on the 20th of June this year.
The flat had not been cleaned, it hadn’t even been hovered. I don’t have to describe the state of that flat, as for the most part, it is actually alluded to adequately within the inventory. The words ‘soiled’ or ‘heavily soiled’ appear 9 times, ‘Dirty’ and ‘Dusty’ appear 5 times each, and ‘mouldy’ 6 times. The words ‘scuffed’, ‘grubby’ and ‘damp’ also make several appearances. Yet despite this, no attempt has been made to rectify these problems. I’ve made several additions that further describe the problems with cleanliness in the flat.
Furthermore, the pictures included with the inventory are highly misleading. They don’t resemble the flat I moved into, they don’t even resemble the state of the flat when I viewed it a few weeks earlier – I have pictures which back this up. The inventory states that it was prepared on the 16th June 2009; these pictures cannot have been taken at that time. I have included some pictures of my own that better reflect the state of the flat when I moved in.
I have contacted the East Croydon branch numerous times in the past three weeks, yet no action has been taken. I emailed them pictures of the flat this last week, but no response has been received yet. I am deeply dissatisfied with the level of service I have received from Bairstow Eves. Unless this matter is resolved and 6 Johnstone Court is cleaned properly, I may be forced to withhold the rent. I do not wish to take this action, but I refuse to pay for a flat which is ‘heavily soiled’ and refuse to let Bairstow Eves ignore this problem any longer.
Scenes from a Marriage (1973) Liv Ullmann, Erland Josephson, Bibi Andersson, Jan Malmsjo. Dir: Ingmar Bergman.
The breakdown of a marriage and its reconciliation of sorts. Impeccably scripted and very insightful drama of the complicated nature of human relationships, but a huge mouthful at 155 mins. Originally a six part series, and probably better viewed that way. Very impressive performances all ways round.
Marathon Man (1974) Dustin Hoffman, Laurence Olivier, Roy Scheider. Dir: John Schlesinger
An aspiring marathon runner gets caught up in his brother’s involvement with diamond smugglers and an escaped nazi. Fairly tense thriller, but it’s hard to care about any of the characters in it. Hoffman is separated from the main action too long for his conflict to really resonate.
Hobson’s Choice (1954) Charles Laughton, John Mills, Brenda Da Banzie, Prunella Scales. Dir: David Lean
A pompous and chauvinistic boot store owner gets his just desserts when his eldest daughter decides to marry his talented shoemaker. A pleasant treatment of a pleasant play. Hardly hilarious or exceptional, but Laughton does give it his all.
Yes, Dave Paul’s Place is 200 posts old, it seems like only 3 years and 9 months ago that I sat down and was forced to start a blog because I was told to in a lecture. We should all have blog because we’re writers and we need to promote our work. And look at me now, writing about Viagra, penis pumps and lubricant*. It’s been slightly different this week, I've had the chance to rewrite 150 medication descriptions for an old site they're revamping. My favourite medication side effects are ‘dark urine’ and a ‘a heightened sense of fear’. It was a slight improvement on some of the medical bits and pieces I've edited before, one of which included ‘death’ as one of the more serious side effects.
Aims for the next 200 posts?** More complaining, obviously. More film and general reviewing/slagging things off. Using this blog as a sort of spring board for my creative side, probably the reason why I was told 3 years and 9 months ago to start the thing in the first place?
Well, I suppose I ought to, haven’t been that creative for, well, quite a long time now. But starting to get ideas again, wanting to get back into doing the kind of things that made me want to be a writer the first. Yes, I think I should do that...
In the meantime, pointless trivia anyone?
Phobia of the day: Hexakosioihexekontahexaphobia – the fear of the number 666 Delusion of the day: Intermetamorphosis – where someone is convinced that the people around them are able to switch identities with each other without changing their appearance.
Samuel Goldwynisms of the day: “Give me a couple of years, and I’ll make that actress an overnight success.”
Quote of the day: "If you stay in a house and there is no toilet paper, you can always slide down the bannisters. Don't tell me you haven't tried it." – Paul Merton
Death of the day: Sergey Tuganov, who died after betting two girls he could have sex with them both for 12 hours. He won the bet, ($4300), and died moments later as result of overdosing on a whole bottle of Viagra.
*My lubricant buyers guide is due to go online at any time. **Their completion will probably coincide with when Bairstow Eves actually gets their f****** act together and sends someone to clean my flat.
DDDDDD – Exceptional and unparalleled DDDDD – Excellent, a special film DDDD – High enjoyable, recommended DDD – Worth watching, but unexceptional or flawed DD – Bland, dull, average D – Cinematic cancer
The Wrestler (2009) Mickey Rourke, Maria Tomei, Evan Rachel Wood. Dir: Darren Aronofsky.
An ailing washed-up wrestler tries to rebuild a life for himself outside the ring. Rourke is simply perfect as a man who can only succeed in a world where all the conflicts are staged. A testament to the power of strong storytelling and spot-on casting.
One Million Years BC (1967) Raquel Welch, John Richardson, Percy Roberts, Robert Brown. Dir: Don Chaffrey
Banished from his tribe, Tumak meets Raquel Welch and joins her tribe before clashing with his old one. Amazing how often a giant dinosaur can sneak up behind you. Very silly, but worth seeing for the Harryhausen dinosaurs and that bikini.
Planet Terror (2007) Rose McGowan, Freddy Rodriguez, Josh Brolin, Marley Shelton, Jeff Fahey. Dir: Robert Rodriguez
Part of the Grindhouse double bill, a go-go dancer quits her job then encounters her old boyfriend in a small town just before it’s invaded by zombies. Perhaps a little too knowing, but generally a great fun parody, though it would’ve been braver had it replicated the budgets of old.
The Curious Case of Benjamin Button (2008) Brad Pitt, Cate Blanchett, Taraji P. Henson, Caroline Fuller. Dir: David Fincher
The life and loves of a man who ages backward, starting old and growing younger. An experiment in how many sentimental gimmicks you can squeeze into one film. Long, uneven and largely meaningless, it would’ve been better if Benjamin had a personality.
Che Part One (2008) Benicio Del Toro, Demian Bichir, Santiaga Cabrera, Vladimir Cruz. Dir: Steven Soderburgh.
The story of Che Guevera’s guerrilla campaign which led to the Cuban Revolution. Beautifully cinematic reconstruction of Guevera’s quest to liberate Cuba, which shows his beliefs, ideals and methodologies well, but offers very little insight into his personality, motivations or past.
A director embarks on his 8½ film, with no idea where it’s going or what it’s about. Witty, surreal and occasionally profound, Fellini strikingly dissects the creative process and how it can make someone face their own weaknesses, failings and vulnerabilities. There’s nothing quite like it.
Bronson (2008) Tom Hardy, Matt King, Terry Stone, Amanda Burton. Dir: Nicolas Winding Refn
The life of Britain’s most violent and notorious prisoner. The darker side of the pursuit of fame, an imaginative, stark and occasionally surreal tale of a man trapped within the persona he made for himself. Hardy is electrifying as the lead – flipping from terrifying, hilarious and inevitably, to pitiful.
Dirty Harry (1971) Clint Eastwood, Harry Guardino, Reni Santoni, Andrew Robinson. Dir: Don Siegel
The first outing for Harry Callahan as he pursues a serial killer with little regard to the rules. So much of this has become cliché now, but it still remains an entertaining and exciting ride, even if it is a little hard to take too seriously.
Knife in the Water (1962) Leon Niemczyk, Jolanta Umecka, Zygmunt Malanowicz. Dir: Roman Polanski
A cocky man invites a young drifter to join him and his wife for a yacht trip. Tense film of rivalry, dominance and sexual tension. Perhaps more interesting than exciting, but as a low budget debut thriller it really is quite impressive.
is a writer for better and for worse. I got in above my station writing for M&S, but was credit crunched down to writing about sex toys, Viagra and herpes meds. I’m now taking a step back towards legitimacy by writing for JML Direct. I’m awkward and don’t like much.