Cable Channel 12 appears to have been the first to have brought the saga of the Rat Squirrel House to the TV screens. I didn't see the item, because—luddite that I am—I don't have cable, but a helpful reporter at the station sent me the text. It read:
(02/19/08) COBBLE HILL - Neighbors are upset over shingles flying off a roof and plenty of squirrels and pigeons in a vacated Cobble Hill home.
The city slapped a vacate order last week on 149 Kane St., which has landmark status. Residents say it's been a long time coming.
"With the roof open and water coming through the building, what's on the sides of the home can be affected," said neighbor Anthony DiGuglielmo.
According to residents, the owner, who reportedly lived in the rundown brownstone as recently as last week, often got defensive when they suggested that she make repairs.
Neighbors hope the situation will improve now that the Department of Buildings has stepped in.
There's a video out there that you fine folks in cable-land can access. I like the tidbit about the landlord getting defensive. I wonder where she's gone to, or if, maybe, she's still in there. I wouldn't be surprised.
In the meantime, Monday was a rainy day—always bad news for Rat Squirrel House, which has a mighty porous roof. The cornice visibly drooped closer to the ground. It might be my imagination, but I feel the entire building has aged markedly in the week since the Fire Department and Department of Building came down on it's head. It is now almost romantic in its decrepitude.
Still, public safety must be taken into consideration. So, please, DOB, get that shed out here to cover up the ruin. And please take that air conditioner out of the second-floor window. That baby is coming down any minute now.