Ahhhhh...back in the ol' apartment. Things are looking up and the apartment is certainly looking better than it has for a long while. So many things have changed over the past year or so (new friends, new relationship, new cities, new skin-care regime, the baby), and yet some things have stayed delightfully the same (squirrel boots, pooping three times a day, old friends, lasagna, my parents' rapid slide into senility). Of all of the things that are wonderfully consistent, the most wonderful is Katelin.
Have I ever told you about Kaitlin? This is her.
Kaitlin is our neighbor. She lives in unit D, which is a pretty sub-par apartment compared to ours, but I guess it's better because she lives in it. It doesn't have a great room with giant windows facing three directions to let the sun stream in all day. It doesn't have a bedroom overlooking a perfectly manicured lawn kept up by a delightfully quiet old man. Most importantly, Katelin's apartment doesn't have a kitchen window that looks directly into her bedroom. That's my favorite part.
I have honestly never seen anything, nor have I often looked because even for me, that's pretty fucking creepy. We're not talking about "creepin'" creepy, just plain fucking creepy. However, I just like knowing that I could probably see her in her apartment if I waited long enough. She must be aware of this, because even though her room would have lots of nice light from the south (sadly, the morning light is blocked because of our living room, which we don't even use in the morning!) she has to keep curtains closed all the time.
Ben and I have many jokes about how creepy I am. Actually, my nickname from his family is Creepy, which is kind of annoying (you'll understand more if you read a rant on this post) but still somewhat ok because they are nice people and apparently think I'm funny. Anyway, a few years ago I had been feeling pretty creepy due to a couple of awkward exchanges in the hallway with Kaitlin, including an ignored post-it note about going for a run together (What. I'm outgoing and I like to do sweaty stuff). All attempts to hang out were thwarted or avoided, so I guess I started to make fun of the situation in order to make myself feel better. It became funny to discuss with Ben the different run-ins we would have with her and how awkward it was that her awkwardness made our awkwardness shine even more than usual...and I guess the joke just got out of hand.
One night, in the wake of domestic troubles and big life decisions, we got "real stoned". I had my favorite blue sparkly recorder and as so often it happens, Ben and I started a jam session.We played together like Dave Matthews band on acid and it was great, until I noticed Ben wasn't playing anymore and I had been jamming alone with my eyes closed ala Kenny G. for god knows how long.
"That was great!" he said,
"Do you think Katelin heard us? Oh god. She must think we are so crazy."
"I dunno. Do you think she's in her room right now? The light's on!"
"No, Courtney, do not go over there."
"But Bennnnnnnnn! I WANNA PLAY HER A SONG!!!"
"I'm not going to be a part of this. I'm going into the bedroom. You're so fucking creepy."
"I'm turning the kitchen light off! She'll never even know!"
What, oh, what song would be good enough for Katelin? I have three from which to choose in my repertoire: Yankee Doodle, Brian Adams' - Everything I Do (I Do For You), and, of course, Celine Dion's number one hit from the blockbuster movie Titanic -
My Heart Will Go On.
(If you have forgotten the song or need to get the full experience of this, please watch this video. It's a pretty good representation of the type of person who would play My Heart Will Go On on the recorder, though no, that isn't me.)
There I stood in the kitchen not a full foot from the open window - the window that was open to Katelin's open bedroom window - and I began to play. The notes sounded great! It was one of my best renditions and I played it with loads of heart. I allowed my eyes to close, feeling the deep emotions of the song that stupid Canadian assaulted our minds with for years. So enchanted with my own playing that I forgot where I was, or at least wasn't thinking about it. A relatively bright flash of light flooded through my eyelids.
Fuck. I dropped to the floor like someone had kicked the backs of my knees but it was too late. Katelin had definitely heard me. Katelin had also definitely seen me, not just in the kitchen doing the dishes, or even looking out the window. Katelin had seen me serenading her with a recorder standing in my dark kitchen. Yup.
Needless to say, it's been a whole lot more awkward ever since that experience. I'm sure the day I moved out was one of the most relaxing days of her life, while the day I moved back in was one of the more stressful, especially because Ben is now on board with the Katelin creepin'. Sometimes we like to walk down the hall and sing quiet songs for Katelin about Katelin. Sometimes we like to just say Katelin's name a lot in places where she might hear us. Sometimes we think this is so funny that it turns into a blog post exclusively about Katelin, which is probably the creepiest thing to do.