I am a 37-year old woman who lives in Long Island City on 38th Avenue near the Keyspan plant in a two family house my husband bought about 4 years ago.
My street is a very interesting one.
Prostitutes! What's up with the prostitution in Long Island City? When is it going to go away? I have actually seen the cops pull up next to the prostitutes, say a few words and DRIVE OFF. One day recently I was in a nail salon on 41st Avenue and a prostitute was being beaten by one of her johns next door! It was so loud the ladies called the police. They brought them out and began talking to the guy, but let the prostitute slip away! I see her every day! Doesn't anyone think this is a problem???
Rats! When my husband bought our house, I don't think he was aware that our block may not have been the nicest block to buy a home on. All he was thinking was that Long Island City was the new 'hot' place to invest, and our house was the only one with a back yard. He created a beautiful garden complete with hydrangea bushes, butterfly bushes, and bamboo trees. It's really lovely, but I can't even go back there to enjoy it! Why? We suddenly have a serious rat problem in the backyard. Yes, rats! It's really disgusting! And I'm beside myself with anxiety about it.
Our housemates who live downstairs recently attempted to have a barbecue out there and during the party, a rat ran across someone's foot!!!
We called the exterminator who came on Monday and put out several bait boxes filled with poison and poison dust in their burrows.
When I got up yesterday morning I decided to take a peek at the backyard from my bathroom window. I guess I was hoping to see a dead rat or two. Well, I saw two, but they were very much alive, running and jumping and playing like bunnies. One was even munching on grass (I guess we have vegetarian rats)...again this morning when I looked! I even saw one really huge one and I seriously almost barfed! So I called the exterminator again on my way to work and he said that with rats it takes time for them to get curious enough about the bait boxes and that it might take a week or so, but to call him and keep him posted...
Yesterday I was so upset, I decided to have a chat with one of the guys from the auto body shop next door as I was leaving for work. I wanted to know if they were also having a problem. The answer was a big hearty YES! They have been having a serious problem since January (at least). They eventually called the exterminator after the rats had gotten so bold as to get into the cars at night and start chewing through the wires! They had even eaten their way through the concrete in one section of the shop to the point where the floor was begining to cave in. He said it's just a really bad problem on our street and at night it's even worse. He added, much to my dismay, that one of the people down the block says they've found their way into her house. So I told him to please, please call the exterminator again because we just had and MAYBE we could make the problem a little better in our little area if we were both proactive in the rat killing....
But really, this seems to be a problem that will take a lot of effort to get rid of. It's a little bit bigger than us and the autobody shop, so I decided to also call 311 and I placed a report with the department of health/human services. Ultimately they need to do a sweep of the neighborhood or they will just get worse, or at the very least, just keep coming back...
What's most annoying about both of these problems is not only does it diminish my quality of life, is that if feels like nobody cares. We aren't on Vernon or on the waterfront. We are sandwiched between the Keyspan plant and Queensbridge projects and it's like our area doesn't matter and that sucks. Anything goes where we are. I'm a homeowner, an artist, a working professional, so is my husband. When I think about that fact that we are trying to start a family here it makes me a little ill.
I'm hoping you will help get the word out and maybe something will get done! - Anonymous