Tag Archives: bmj2k

Conveniently Inconvenient

1 May

May 1, 2021

Dear readers, Mr. and Mrs. Blog are once again looking for a place to live. For reasons I prefer to keep to myself, our old place was no longer meeting the needs of a pair of globetrotting iconoclasts such as ourselves (and our cat.)

(On a completely unrelated note, if anyone would be interested in buying a slightly singed and smoke damaged sofa, or some only partially burnt pants, drop me a note. Ha ha, I kid because it’s true.)

Well, as part of my brilliant plan to see every lousy house in Brooklyn, a plan which I pinky-swear is not at all motivated by my lack of money but only motivated by sense of ironic humor, I toured a home which, after some long thought and soul-searching, I declared was a house that people only move out of, not into.

But that’s not to say that it didn’t make me think. Below is a rough sketch of the layout of the last apartment I saw. It isn’t to scale, but it is close, and I did not exaggerate it one bit.

BEHOLD!

You are reading that correctly. The bathroom is in the kitchen, directly between the stove and the dining room table.

Now, if you spend as much time in the bathroom as I do my cat does, you can see the obvious convenience.

On the other hand, without being too graphic, there are some, um, “obvious drawbacks” to having the toilet three feet from your breakfast burrito. And speaking as someone who hosts lavish dinner parties, it can be unseemly when the Archbishop excuses himself from the Vichyssoise and the rest of the party can clearly hear his “business affairs.” Let alone smell them.

This is not the first time I have seen an apartment where the bathroom is uncomfortably close to the kitchen, but this is the first time the bathroom has actually been in the kitchen.

(Meanwhile, I have a singed loveseat to go with the burnt sofa, and there is a charred sport coat with most of the lapels still intact that matches the only partially burnt pants. I’ll toss in some waterlogged sneakers too.)

.

Mr. Blog, P.I.

28 Feb

February 28, 2021

Longtime readers of this blog who have not yet unsubscribed know that Mr. Blog has at various times been employed as a teacher, part-time pickle salesman, agent of a Company I Am not allowed to name, and now as a private investigator.

I handle insurance cases for corporate clients, mostly, but also do work for New York City and State. In my years as a PI I have read autopsy reports, submitted Freedom of Information Requests, and watched surveillance footage of a mechanic getting mooned. (It was even funnier than you think.)

Confidentiality requires that I do not name names or keep personal video, or trust me, that mooned mechanic would have been all over the internet.  

About a year and a half ago I handled a construction claim where the claimant alleged injury while hauling debris down a ramp. Typical construction WC claim (Workers Compensation). As DoF (Director of Field Operations for my company) I had my investigators interview the insured owner, take witness statements, obtain photos and measurements of the ramp and equipment in question, obtain surveillance footage of the accident (in this case, no video cameras were on site) and get all pertinent documents- leases, COI (certificate of insurance), accident reports, etc.

It sounds simple and it should be, but factor in lack of cooperation since no company owner ever seems to think they need to speak to us despite our being there to defend them, and this can drag on for months. This case was completed in about 6 weeks. I filed two reports and it was over, on my end. On the insurance company’s end, cases like this drag on for (on average) two to six years. If the claimant has no identification or documentation, or the insured company has kept no records, both being common in construction, it can go on and on.

So that was 2019. Last week, I was forwarded an anonymous tip in this matter. It alleged (I will use generalities, no specifics) that the injured party in that old accident case was a major drug dealer who flew on a certain airline to certain cities to get drugs and bring them to New York. The email listed specific cities and months of travel and detailed the way this person funneled money though various accounts to buy the drugs. The anonymous tipster said that the claimant was lying about getting hurt and had faked injuries before to get money to buy “huge” amounts of drugs. It suggested that we subpoena his travel records and bank accounts.

OK.

(FYI, I cannot subpoena anything. Common misconceptions are that a PI can subpoena anything- we can serve subpoenas and write them on behalf of others, but not for ourselves- and that we can obtain ambulance records, 911 calls and medical records. We cannot. Those require HIPPA authorizations from the patient.)

I spoke with the insurance carrier who asked me if I could verify the facts of the email. I told her no, not the specifics, but we would delve into his background and see what we can find. (Background searches are fairly common in accident cases, but we had not done one in this case as it wasn’t necessary.)

It took awhile to pinpoint the correct person since it isn’t as easy as searching a name. You need pedigree info and we had very little but once we found the correct individual, here’s what we found:

The subject was the subject of a Federal sting operation and he was caught bringing very, very large amounts of cocaine to New York from other states. He had a long record of violent drug offenses and spent a lot of time in prison. He was also very litigious, suing the NYPD and the Police Commissioner for false arrest. One news article quoted him as complaining about the food in prison. So no, I reported, we can’t verify the specific facts of the email but generally, yes, this was (and I quote from my verbal report) “one bad dude.”

After careful consideration, the lawyer I consulted with from the insurance company asked me if I could set up a fake drug buy.

No, I replied. No

I wrote up my report and billed it out, as any good private investigator would.

.

%d bloggers like this: