Corpse on my hall


Did I tell you all about the rotting corpse on my hallway?
Awful story!
I'd been smelling this stench on my hall for about 3 weeks, even complained to maintenance over a week ago, half-jokingly saying that I even thought it might be someone who died, I got the semi-racist response "it's probably just a Chinese person cooking a cabbage, that always smells bad." Finally yesterday the old Ukranian lady who lives across the hall from me knocked on my door to ask me if I agreed with her that there was a terrible smell in the hall, she had complained to maintenance also and they blew her off as an annoying old lady. So she and I decided this had gone on long enough and went to the maintenance office together, and convinced them to come check out the smell - they came, belittling our concerns all the while, insisting that it was "not a rotting smell." One maintenance guy said he smelled nothing, and the other guy said there was definitely "a stench" but that it was "definitely from someone's dirty apartment."
When they left, having done nothing, the nice asian dad who lives down the hall came out of his apartment and said he couldn't take it anymore, even his 3-year old boy had been complaining lately, and come to think of it, he hasn't seen his neighbor in a while. The neighbor in question was a portly man in his 60s, lived alone down at the far end of the hall. Rent bill still on his door. We decided we should call 911, so I called and told them there was a stink on my hallway, we feared someone might be dead. So the cops came in a little while, and they were very funny cops, a duo. They arrived on the hallway and sniffed and immediately said "oh yeah. It doesn't look good for this guy." They saw the rent bill on his door and said "it's always the same." (picture all of this being said in the most stereotypical NYC cop accents). They said a number of times "we believe this guy has, uh, expired." They called in a third cop, who arrived shortly and talked exactly the same way. When he arrived I escorted him from the elevator down to the end of the hall where this was all taking place, asking him if he smelled what we were talking about - he said "Naw, I don't smell nothin'. I wuz down at September 11." I thought he meant that he smelled so many stinking corpses at the twin towers that nothing bothered him anymore but he continued: "I developed a cancerous growth in my nose - they hadda take it out, and now I can't smell nothin." So this is like a superhero cop with no sense of smell, who gained his powers from chemical exposure at the Twin Towers, and they bring him on for particularly smelly jobs!! Amazing! It seemed at that point there was nothing left to do but break open the mystery door.
I went back to my apartment, not wanting to be standing around when they broke down the door and hauled out this 3 or 4 week rotting corpse of a fat guy. The hallway of the third floor where I live is in an "S" shape, and my apartment is all the way at the opposite end of the S from the mystery apartment, but there was no question - when I was safely locked in my apartment, about ten minutes later, this horrible smell suddenly permeated my place, even from way down at the farthest end of the hall around two bends, it must have been when they opened that door. I can't imagine how awful it must have been closer to the event. I opened all my windows and turned the fan on high and started burning incense. Finally, about 6 hours later, I got the courage to leave my apartment and go outside to get away from my building for a while. Down on the street was the "meat wagon" medical examiner's van, and a couple of medics with a folded metal stretcher trying to gain access to my building - I let them in - I couldn't believe it had taken so long for them to arrive, but I guess there's a lot of official stuff that needs to happen first in these cases. I was sure the burst of stink from 6 hours earlier was from the body being removed, but apparently it had just been from when they opened the apartment door. I watched them get into the elevator with the stretcher and I took off, not wanting to be in the lobby when the elevator came back down! The other thing is, one of the two elevators in my building is broken, so there's often a small crowd of people waiting for the one working elevator in the lobby by the time it arrives. I can't imagine what it was like when the elevator arrived with a big fat stinking month-old corpse in it! I wonder if people still piled in to the elevator when it came out... I guess so... I guess those body-bags must be smell-insulated also.
That was on Friday, and my hallway still reeks badly.
On the good side, at least somebody on the co-op apartment waiting list is going to get a nice letter soon.
And remember - that's the only way ANYbody ever moves out of the co-ops!
So that'll be me someday!


Man, that sounds rough. But

Chris Andersen's picture

Man, that sounds rough. But is always nice to hear a story with cops where the cops come out as good guys, or at the very least, not bad guys. I've always had a soft spot for working joe cops; probably too much Law & Order.


Jeannie's picture

That story stank! bahahahaha

Sorry, couldn't resist, but phew *rolls her eyes as she makes a grimace* Poor old guy.

Yes, its me. You may now genuflect.


Barry Bliss's picture

So many of us have become so cut off from others, hiding in our little boxes, that someone can die and no one know for three weeks, and they're 100 feet away.
It's weird what we've become.


Hikool's picture

,but what have we been before?