Well. I am really at a loss here. I do not know what to make of this behavior, or how I should interpret it. I mean, there are a great many ways to interpret it, but most of them are very negative, and ...but I should back up and tell you what I'm talking about.
You know Joe is going to college, right? And living in his first apartment. What I may not have made clear, is that Joe's great-uncle left Joe money to go to college, and put his younger half brother, Uncle, in charge of this fund. Uncle is the legal executor of Joe's college fund, and as such, is required to pay his bills, his travel costs, his room and board, his books and supplies, and his tuition. All from this fund.
So, when I let him know that Joe was ready for college, he asked a list of questions to make certain that Joe was really attending school (or something -- I'm not really sure what these questions were for, since it's not as though Joe has to satisfy Uncle of anything) but he did pony up with a nice fat check (at the last possible moment -- and we were a week late paying for tuition, but it all worked out) for school clothes, tuition, and getting an apartment. We even exchanged this Q&A :
Uncle: "How much will I be paying per month?"
Me: "The monthly charge will be $800, for rent and utilities."
So I KNOW he knew and understood that the rent check had to come once a month.
And yet -- October first came and went. Rent was due by the fifth, but I kept calming Joe down and saying, "Don't worry, the check will come," until the fourth, when I finally gave in to my private freak-out, and sent an e-mail saying:
"A brief note to remind you that rent is due by the fifth of the month. I'm afraid it will be late this month, but I'm hoping his landlord will be kind this first time!
If you want to send the $800 to me, you can, of course, but Joe has his own checking account now and you can send it directly to him if you like. His address is (**).
Thanks very much!"
And then I reassured Joe again that the check would come. However, on the fifth, when it did not arrive, I called and left a message on their phone. I called again on the sixth. Then on the seventh --the SEVENTH! -- I sent this e-mail:
I feel silly writing this, since I'm sure the check is about to arrive, but we are feeling pretty anxious here -- Joe in particular. His rent was due on the fifth, and is getting later every day. Please forgive me nagging!
In the meantime, I was getting a daily call from Joe's building manager, making increasingly threatening noises, until the eighth, when she left Joe an official 72-hour notice of eviction.
Joe was calling me repeatedly to rave about the physical damage he was going to do to his uncle if he ever saw him again, and I was getting really very angry.
So, on the evening of Thursday, the seventh, Joe called and got his Great-Aunt. She was surprised to hear from him, and claimed complete ignorance of the fact that they were supposed to be sending us a monthly check. She also said she would immediately send him a check. Joe began to tell her how much it would need to be for, but she interrupted him, saying, "Yeah, your Mom left a message, she said it was $800."
What? What?! WHAT!!!!???
So they had listened to my messages and read my e-mails and were just ignoring me?
In any case, the check arrived Saturday, and we managed to get it deposited to my account (Aunt had written it to "Joe" Sumpter, which is, of course, not his legal name. So he couldn't deposit it to his own account) and I wrote him a check, and he took it over to his manager this morning. Today is the last day he had to pay it, or be evicted first thing tomorrow morning.
And since then, I have not heard a peep from Uncle or Aunt. No phone call saying, "Gee, I'm sorry -- we will make sure you have the checks by such-and-such a date from now on." No e-mail, saying a bit more than that. NOTHING WHATSOEVER.
And I am very much up in the air and confused and concerned about how to respond to this sort of thing. Various people to whom I have spoken about it, say that I should promptly and at once, talk to an attorney about getting Uncle removed form this account, and getting it transferred to me, or some court-appointed person. And I would like to do that. But that is so very hostile and reactionary of me.
I guess I will talk it over with my dad when I get down there tomorrow morning.