... the tales of two sisters

Dana lives in Seattle, and Tracie lives in Germany. We are businesswomen, writers and humorists. We write about life, dating, and today's modern women.

My Daddy… The Landlord

Long before caller I.D., cell phones and ring tones,as a child, when our house phone rang, my father oftenanswered it and would simply say, “This is your Landlord.”Our family housing rental business was ran out ofour home and 9 times out of 10, the calls were from tenants,and not for social purposes. The phone rang from sun up to sun down and the only time we got areprieve was late at night when we directed the calls to Kelly’s Answering Service. Kelly’s was instructed to ring through to the house only in case of an emergency -i.e. one of the buildings was on fire!Issues such as beinglocked out, a minor leak, or the unit upstairs playing music too loud would have to wait until the a.m.

Daddy was a notorious landlord who was instrumental in developing the Central District in Seattle.WhenBoeing plummeted and signs were hung for the last person to leave Seattle to turn out the lights, our fathernegotiated and purchased every piece of property he couldget his hands on.This was no easy feat for a young man from Detroit transplanted to the Pacific Northwest in the 1950’s to join theArmy at Ft. Lewis. From Lake Washington to Puget Sound, Gerald Frank, saw Seattle as an opportunity to create his future. He was a vigilante and often took the laws into his own hands. From time to time, Tracie and I will be sharing blogs entitled My Daddy…

The LandlordOne of my favorite Daddy stories goes like this:
A delinquent tenant, Mr. Jenkinswho constantly was late with the rent and had more excuses than the law allowed had not paid December’s rent. Daddy assumed as December was always a challenging month for collections, that Mr. Jenkins had spent the rent money on gifts.The mortgage can not be paid based on “I owe you’s” and “failed promises.” Frustrated after numerous attempts to contact Mr. Jenkins and getting his messages, visits tothe houseand calls dodged, Daddy showed up at his rental house at 5 am on December 20th. He took his faithful carpenter, Chrisanddirected him to usehis master key, open the lockand removed the front door and place it in the back of his pickup.In the midst of winter, with inclement weather, the rain was going inside the house at a rampant pace. Surely curious pedestrians would walk by and have a full view of the Jenkin’s interior, leaving all their furnishings, andpersonal beings at risk.
By the time Daddy returned home the phone was ringing.
“This is your landlord,” Daddy said when he picked up the line.
“What the hell is going on?” Mr. Jenkins screamed, “My front door is missing!
“Daddy responded, “Ain’t that a coincidence, so is your rent!”