Dear Mister Poe,

At the end of this month, we will be reaching the conclusion of your one-year lease. I wish I could say that I am sorry to see you go.

I’ll admit that I was initially impressed by your literary credentials and surprisingly fine taste in furniture. Due to your patterns of negligent and disruptive behavior, however, I am unable to return your security deposit.

Within the past three months alone, the violations of your lease and our community standards have included:

  • Knocking holes in the walls of your unit. (“Looking for treasure” and “looking for that cat” are not acceptable reasons for property damage. Also, the “NO PETS” policy could not have been more explicit.)
  • Prying up the floorboards in your unit.
  • Refusing pest control services because you claimed to have “special bugs” that will “restore your lost fortune.” If you’d like to restore your fortune (and begin paying rent on time), might I suggest getting a job?
  • Walling up common areas without authorization. Other residents can no longer access the wine cellar, and they are very unhappy!
  • Attempting to turn the communal compost bin into a “rat pit.”
  • Refusing me access to your unit to inspect the extensive damage. (Pointing at my cataract and calling me an “evil-eyed vulture” was untoward and, frankly, ableist.)
  • Shouting at a bird until the late hours of the night. (Quiet hours begin at 10 p.m., and, again, WE DO NOT ALLOW PETS. I do not care if you insist the “bird is not yours”! If it’s there every night—and it shouldn’t be—it’s yours!)
  • Yelling at the bells every hour on the hour. (First Presbyterian is directly across the street, and you knew this when you moved in. The bells ring every day! You should be used to this by now!)
  • Hosting an enormous, raucous party that drew noise complaints and turned into a superspreader event.
  • Opening other residents’ mail to “check that no one is stealing it.”
  • Shredding all monthly bills and insisting that they are “hoaxes.”
  • Replying to all communiqués with seemingly blank sheets of paper and incomprehensible strings of numbers.
  • Accosting prospective residents to ask, “How long do you give it before this dump cracks in half and sinks into the tarn?”

Given the cumulative repair costs, inconvenience, and the fact that you call me “old man” instead of learning my name, I think I’ve been more than generous.

If you have not vacated your unit by 5 p.m. tomorrow, expect rapping, rapping at your chamber door.

And your deposit?



Mr. W. B. Tyler
47 Bond St.
New York, NY