So, I arrived in my new Toronto apartment today.  Because I live on the other side of the country, I wasn’t able to visit the place first but, instead, based my decision on the specs and photos.  It looked nice enough and, surely, it couldn’t be any worse than the place we stayed last year with the incessant 7 am to 7 pm construction right next door.  Could it?


October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

“Cosy” best describes my parking spot in the deep bowels of the building parkade, located roughly in the seventh circle somewhere between the profligates and blasphemers.  “You might want to back it in,”I was advised.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

This long, useless, space-waster of a corridor greets you as you enter the place.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

Here allow me to hang up your jacket, sir.  As for you, ma’am, you’ll have to keep yours on as we only have on hanger.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

A cactus!  Perfect for unwitting dogs or, in tonight’s case, an equally unwary writing partner.  Hope he remembers to clean the wound when he gets home!

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

How thoughtful of the owners not to bother to clear out their shit.  That empty honey jar may come in handy.  As will that gently used toothbrush and shaving kit under the sink.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

They were kind enough to leave us a half-used container of jalapeño mustard and a box of feminine napkins but, alas, no dust pan…which would have come in handy –

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

After I knocked over the unwieldy potted plant in the front room.  As it turns out, it’s impossible to just go out and buy a dust pan at 9:00 p.m. in Toronto…so that dirt will just stay right there for now.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

Who needs bedrooms drawers when you have these handsome old coca-cola crates?  I’m kind of disappointed they didn’t leave their used milk cartons behind for sock storage.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

No blinds on the entire east wall of windows offers everyone an unobstructed view into our personal lives.

Frustrated with my inability to properly store away any of our belongings, I decided to take a break and catch the Astros-Yankees wildcard game.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

Really?  Basic cable package doesn’t cover the Sports Network?  Okay, I’ll just switch on over to AMC and catch a rerun of The Walking Dead in advance of its season premiere next weekend.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

Are you shitting me?  Really?  No AMC either?  Okay, fine.  Food Network it is!

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!


There’s also a balcony so treacherous-looking that I’m seriously considering krazy-gluing shot to ensure Akemi and the dogs NEVER set foot on it.

Finally, let me leave you with the little decorative touches that adorn the place…

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

In the event of a power failure this winter, I’m sure I’ll rethink critiquing this horrendous wall-mounted blanket.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

And I suppose these wall-mounted snowshoes COULD also come in handy as well.

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

The arts & crafts ottoman?  Probably not.

ADDENDUM: Discovered the shoebox-sized Easy Bake oven.  Here it is, in action, warming up my leftover pizza slice:

October 6, 2015: My Hatred For My New Toronto Place Goes Up To 11!

Akemi is NOT going to like this.

45 thoughts on “October 6, 2015: My hatred for my new Toronto place goes up to 11!

  1. LOLOL! I’m so sorry, Joe – but this has me in stitches! I just can’t imagine YOU in THAT situation…unless it’s a new sitcom on a tv channel you can’t get! I totally lost it at the pantry! LOL! I’m sorry…I just cannot type – laughing too hard! (I sure hope this isn’t the place I posted on your blog after a 3.3 second search…lol…)



  2. Get out now while you are still unharmed and before the dogs get a hold of that cactus. It should not be too difficult to find another place, right? Yep, another place and then smooth sailing from now on.

  3. Well that really sucks….. I know the feeling, happened to me twice, paid top dollar for a holiday home that advertised all the best facilities, yes it had them however…..cable box but cable account blocked and no free to air tv channels either, spa but main water turned off to spa because of a leaking pipe, air conditioning but only in one room, all the cupboards full of the owners stuff, dirty diaper in the rubbish bin, king size bed more like 2 singles pushed together and the metal frames where bent so the bed had a giant dip in the middle, ended up sleeping on the floor. And to top it off when I went to my car after the first night there, someone had gouged something all the way along the right hand side of my car destroying the paint, yes the holiday sucked…….but lucky it was only for a week. cant imagine having to put up with it any longer

  4. Ack, that is so much ewwwww there. That’s a shithole of a post-college-dorm apartment.

    Now, on to problem solving.
    Does your TV service back in Vancouver have an app that you can download to your phone? If so, get an Apple TV or equivalent, pair it with your device (or stream directly from the service’s website from your laptop), launch the app, and there ya go. You have access to everything you did at home.

    Rent some furniture.

    Hire a cleaning service to come in tomorrow and nuke the place with bleach.

    Buy an old apartment building, restore it, then rent out the units to people such as yourselves. There is clearly a need for quality corporate/temporary housing there.

    And there are no 24 hour grocery stores or Wal Marts in Toronto?

    Good luck! I’m sure it’ll all get better in 6 or 7 months.

  5. On the plus side, you might be glad not to have put your stuff away if it turns out there are bed bugs.

    That’s going to be a pain getting blinds onto that window. It’s built weird.

    Is that a custom-made sharp shelf at neck/face level in that narrow hallway?

  6. It’s not always location, location, location. Half the time it’s parking, parking, parking.

    That hallway needs a Dark Matter poster on the wall…

    OMG, that closet is ghastly!!

    Tell them to come get the cactus before you “accidentally, of course” kill it. (Joe cactus LOVE lots of water. Lots.)

    Oh gross! A large trash bag and a swift arm sweep will clear that cabinet out in a jiffy.

    Is this a lease? Aren’t they suppose to clean it in between guests?

    They can come get that huge potted plant too. (Joe it HATES water. So don’t do that. Ever.)

    I think those handsome old coca-cola crates are where you store your albums. Groovy!

    No blinds on the windows? That’s it, I’m outta there! I have a phobia of people watching me.

    No cable either?! What the hell kind of place is this?! You can read and work on scripts, but what will Akemi do?

    Not my decorating tastes either. But wait. That ottoman is nice. I like that. 🙂

    And you will learn to love it too…

    Hey thanks for the tour! I enjoyed it! Really! Hope Bubba isn’t crying like last time. Just let his mama Akemi hold him.

  7. Shame about the condo, I hope you will find something better or withhold rent until your amenities are provided. Before you move check out Khao San Road, if you like Thai food it might make your day!

  8. Well at least when things may become extremely dire for the crew in Dark Matter to an especially dark and extra level of dreary, we know where some of the inspiration came from.

    Bright side… at least there is …nope doesn’t look like it has that either.

  9. They couldn’t even leave you *matching* snowshoes??? Sorry, that’s the first thing that came through my head as I looked at the pictures. That blanket looks like a cat toy, my cat Widget would LOVE to do her jumping jacks to go for those tassles!!!

    Maybe with the windows, just do some paintings completely covering them with tempera paints….a project for Akemi, perhaps? Heck, I would do that!

    I did make a short film this weekend for the 60 Hour Film Challenge for the Colchester Film Festival in England. Not that I could drop everything on my income(less) budget as a student recovering from brain injuries (yes which means I have difficulties taking on any kind of steady work while in school) to fly across the pond to go to the festival, but it is kind of cool that for a second year, I completed the task of getting it done. If you are able to watch it whenever the internet situation improves for you, here’s the link (and yes I wound up setting it in the same fictional universe as my low budget sci fi webseries Preflight Launch):

    Anyhoot, I hope things get better in the new place for you, Akemi and the little four legged babies. I can feel my head hurting from being on my laptop too long, so I’d best get off of here!

    All the best,

  10. That place looks pretty awful! It reminds me of the time I moved to New Zealand. We’d just got off the plane and had a week or so of accommodation before we needed to find somewhere to live. All the places we’d looked at were shabby and damp until we came across a brand new, never lived in, flat. It was clean and modern and the only downside was that it was above a pawn shop in a dodgy part of town. “How bad could it be?” we asked ourselves. It was a reputable, nationwide chain pawn shop, not some seedy dive. Anyway, as it turned out, it could be pretty bad. The shop employees would crank up the stereos and TVs when they got in early each morning, 7 days a week, we would have to step over drunks and vomit to get to the entrance of the building, and, because the building was brand new, we had the pleasure of finding everything wrong with it, like the leaking shower screen that would flood the bathroom every time we had a shower. We only had a 6 month lease and I think we ended up breaking the lease early and paying the penalty just to get out.

    Don’t you have PAs, EAs, interns, etc that can deal with these things for you? I’m sure the actors are found nice places to live while they’re in town.

  11. Well.. that gave me my laugh for the day… sorry it was at your expense… but damn that is a shithole…

    Was it supposed to be ‘furnished’?

    Don’t know if you’ve signed a lease or anything but now that I was there I would look for something else, before I got too busy…

    Here’s a link you may not have seen… you can refine the search for rentals…

    (man that’s a long freakin’ link)…

    If you have to go again next year, you may want to consider staying in a hotel for a couple of weeks and looking for a place cuz… ummm… yikes!!!

    …although looking on the bright side you have a private bowling alley lane.

  12. Here’s a “thought”… Why not get the Person who goes looking for “LOCATIONS” to film the Show, *locate* a place for you guys to LIVE in..?!! There must be *some* abandoned-former-toxic-factory suitable to inhabit that is better than the crackhouse-cookie-cutter-condo you’re in now!
    Meanwhile, get a hazmat team in there. And ONLY drink bottled water!
    oh, and hire a PA with real estate experience! Clearly, you need MUCH help in that area!

  13. whoaaaaa…..
    After your “first” surprise viewing….get your landlords for false adverts
    and threaten legal action.
    They should pay for clean up AND
    at least 5 days at a GOOD motel while they get the apartment cleaned up.

    serious OMG.

  14. Oh, Joe. That’s not…good. I’m so sorry it turned out to be such a turn off – can the owner fix some of the issues, or at the very least clean it up before you go in? The stuff like the parking space is pretty hard to solve. Does the Q7 have one of those automatic parking systems? Hope so. Is that hallway really that narrow, or is that just the camera making it look like that? It doesn’t look like it would meet code by that picture.

    I will say if it was me and I had no choice but to stay there at first, I wouldn’t be unpacking and as the first order of business be shopping for another place.

  15. How locked into a lease are you? I’d start looking around. So sorry for y’all though. It needs to be an adventure not a disappointment.

  16. Outa there!! Yes,hire a lawyer and get your money back. A long term hotel…like Marriott Residence Inn or such until you can find another place. Did you ask friends on Facebook ?,they might know somewhere. Good luck.

  17. Well, you could have always run over to the palminators apt and borrowed her dustpan!!!! I’m, pretty sure she would have loved that! Especially, if you told her you had dust bunnies all over the place! And, I’m pretty sure she would have dropped on the floor laughing her ass off at yeah!!!!!!And, by the way that, looks like it could possibly be Kris holden-rieds old apartment or maybe caseys!!!! You, will have to ask the palminator about that I’m sure she’ll know! Lol!-Tam

  18. Joe, you work with great people it seems – you could have asked one or a few,of them to vet these apartments you were considering, no? I’ve always wondered why, with all the movement in Toronto, someone doesnt build or purchase a small apartment complex to be used for travelling actors to eliminate this grossness that you encountered.

    We’ve been forced to live in a motel since August when a driver with serious health issues drove into our house. We’ve been lucky, motel is clean and well looked after…. House, not so much but progress is being made slowly. Don’t know when we’ll move back yet.

  19. Are you really sure the other people have moved out yet?? With all that stuff they might still be there…..check another closet… or that killer balcony..ewww.. Hope this giant issue has a resolution, would hate to have to stay…..there…dang where are those positive thoughts…… 😯

  20. Wow Joe, that’s pretty terrible. If you can get out of it, RUN! If not, buy some spare light bulbs for that Easy Bake Oven. They blow out pretty frequently. Allegedly.

    On another note, we started re-watching SG1 on Amazon streaming last night. So cool seeing everyone from almost (gulp) 20 years ago.

  21. Wow. This is the least Joe friendly apartment on the planet! Don’t unpack, flee to a hotel now! The walls and floors look like flimsy and the floors look like they dispense splinters liberally and often.

  22. Poor Joe. Please make sure that you escort Akemi to and from her car so that she’s not in that numerous-hiding-places parking garage alone. Seriously. That garage looks unsafe. Meanwhile, if you haven’t signed the lease yet, don’t. Go to a motel. Hire a realtor to help you find somewhere else faster than you can for yourself. Next year, hire someone to vet places for you, and e-mail *current* photos to you, before you agree to any place again. Have that person fax to you the contracts so you can CAREFULLY read them for what is promised in the way of cleanliness, furniture, curtains/blinds, balcony/patio/yard, maintenance AND whether there is a back-out clause if the dwelling doesn’t live up to the contract and promises. Also, pull the mattress off the bed and check for bed bugs BEFORE you lay your suitcases on it, or sleep in it. You have my condolences,

  23. Oh my! It is kinda funny, your writing, the apartment not so much. How locked in are you? Hey I got great idea…move the filming to Florida! No snow, great weather, balmy breezes “Joe friendly apartments,” to quote shinyhula. Have you had gator tail? Hey Burt Reynolds filmed here. Hang in there Joe ““When you get into a tight place and everything goes against you till it seems you could not hold on a minute longer, never give up then for that is just the place and time that the tide will turn.” Harriet Beecher Stowe

  24. Gosh Joe that place looks awful. I’m so sorry. I agree with everyone else. can you get out of the lease? I’m worried about the cactus and dogs, as well as the balcony. Owners should pay for cleaners to remove everything… Ewwwww!!! Surely there must be decent places to live in Toronto.

    Best of luck to you.

    cheers, Chev

  25. In better news, I just checked at the PO today and my Stargate coasters have arrived! How funny is it that I was more excited to see the Akemi drawings on the envelope! 🙂 Still, they’re really cool coasters and yeah, unexpectedly heavy for their size! I’m presuming they’re made from Naquadah.

  26. It seems you have brightened some of your follower bud’s days as much as the apt has dimmed yours. JSYK
    1) Feminine napkins are great injury packing. Sterile and wayyy cheaper than gauze.
    2) It may measure the quality of your neighbors, but maybe you can let some of them take less-desirable accoutrements left to you. [Fob them off on someone else. Whose taste you will clearly assess by that mistake they make.]
    3)Jenny Horn almost nailed it with post-college-dorm apartment. It more likely was “college apartment”.
    BTW, no one will be friends with me anymore when I say that husband and I still have orange crates from college. We have so many books ahead of the bookshelves we have had — fewer only due to our Kindles — that shelf space is still scarce. [No you do not get to see our mess. It is at least not so 1970s-looking, but …

  27. The parking place could do with (well, besides space) mirrors to peer on lurkers. [If mirrors broken, prepare to fight. Ahhhh! We want you to write horrific stories, not live in them!]

  28. Oh Joe, I’m sorry, but that’s the best laugh I’ve had all day, LOL! I can just see you walking through the apartment, discovering one treasure after another as your blood pressure steadily rises! Following along with your photos was like watching a storyboard unfold…say, maybe you can use this sometime!

    Seriously, what an awful situation to walk into, especially so late in the evening. And with the dogs. Ick. I hope you haven’t unpacked and I wish you the best in finding a great place to live, asap.

  29. Yikes! so sorry to hear you got screwed on new place. Ok Deep breath. Exhale. don’t panic.

    This place just posted two hours ago on web: its a two bdrm house located only 8 min drive to work (according to mapquest). Dogs ok. 1,000 mnthly.

    (you may have to charm them a bit and give them a sob story to try and get a 6 mo lease – but you can probably work something out. OR you may just go with a yearly lease so you can have it for next few yrs during DM run – which is likely your best bet )

    While it does mean you would have to ‘initially’ call a Rent -A-
    Center for couch/bed/coffee tables/dinette, it might be worth it. ( it has a washer//dryer in it) Rent A Center delivers and picks up when you are done using items.

    As far as internet/ cable.. I found out it may not be that complicated.

    Most tv channels now will allow you to watch via web – so call your internet/cable provider to get your account number. & ask your internet provider if they offer internet on the go – if you can use your internet svc in GTA.

    My provider allows me to use internet /tv svc no matter if I am in Florida or across the country back home in Colorado.

    It is cheaper to buy an inexpensive tv at a walmart super centre than it is to rent one. ( you then only need buy a ten dollar converter/ adapter plug to stream your lap top or ipad onto your tv set to watch shows and movies.

    (akemi can pick up cheap pots/pans/ and other kitchen wares from local walmart or other discount stores

    Couldn’t hurt to at least have a look at it, eh.

    Hope it works out to be what you need. 🙂

    if it doesn’t – I’d call several real estate brokers and describe your specs / needs until one of them comes up with something that works just right

  30. Sorry to hear about the housing troubles. Hopefully, the fixable issues will get resolved soon.

    I learned over the years to not outsource apartment or house rental shopping…too many things to go wrong and you’re the one who has to live with them. The last few moves have involved either extended stay or monthly rentals until we found a place to our liking.

    And for retirement I’m thinking of buying some land down south, having electric and sewer hookups put in and then living in our RV while our post-kid dream house is built. Is a four car garage and an airplane hanger too much? Nah…

  31. For Akemi’s sake, I hope you find another place before she gets there!

    As for emergency brooms and dust pans, Home Depot opens quite late, and there are 24-hour Wal-Marts and Shoppers Drug Marts.

  32. By the way: even if your internet provider doesn’t allow you to do wifi svc on the go to use in GTA, you can still order on line, with next day delivery, an adapter to hook your cell phone to tv. so you can go to whatever tv channel you want to watch on web and put in account number for your tv/cable provider.

    I do this often with syfy because am working and on the go so very often

    This could work for tv watching even if you decide not to move.

    (though, if that place, posted in previous comment, is even remotely decent it’ll likely get rented quickly so if you are considering a move I’d call them as soon as you possibly can.)

  33. Oh my goodness…seems like I was the only cold-hearted beastie around these parts. But I still can’t stop laughing about this! Sorry! Not for your situation, but for laughing at your situation! 😈 All I could think of last night was that it was like a new Odd Couple, with you as Felix, and the apartment as Oscar, and each week you discover some new horror lurking in a cabinet, closet, or under the bed…only instead of monsters, it’s dirty tissues, old underdrawers, something resembling dried blood in the shower grout, and a missing shower curtain…



  34. Wait until next year when “Pick and Pay” is enforced Joe. Then you can just individually select the channels you want to pay for, instead of dealing with this trubbish of a channel packaging situation we have here in Canada.

  35. You didn’t show us the bathroom. Please tell us there is indoor plumbing. How quaint…rustic accommodations in the city…crates, blankets, & an open unobstructed view of your neighbors! I’m more concerned that there was no place to buy a dust pan at 9:00 at night. Does Toronto not have Wal-marts?

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