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Frozen Assets

When one thinks of Southern California, one does not associate it with cold weather. As it turns out—despite all the global warming—in Los Angeles the mercury has dipped into the thirties and forties (roughly 0° to 10° Celsius) overnight.

And that’s when my apartment heater decided to die … three times, no less! Over the last six weeks, Martine and I have been enduring long spells of teeth-chattering cold.

Matters have been complicated by the fact that, because we are grandfathered in at low rent due to the City of Los Angeles’s rent control ordinance, it is to the advantage of the building owners to kick our frozen carcasses into the street so that they could start charging triple the rent to someone who does not mind living across the street from a homeless encampment.

I have hopes that our 75-year-old heater will continue to work, since the weather forecast for the rest of the month seems to be for cold nights throughout. I am sure that my next gas bill will be outrageous.

This time of year is usually pretty cold, but this year since to be the iciest December in decades. Santa Claus should feel right at home.