# 20 Real Estate Man
Real Estate Man had just updated his rental advertisements on Craig’s List and settled in for the anticipated apartment seekers to call, email or text. There seem to be a generational difference in what method of communication potential renters preferred and used. Seems like the two latter options were the choice of connection for younger future occupants. Older heads more often used the phone. This morning the phone rang and Real Estate Man was greeted with a mellifluous “Good Morning!” This cheery salutation was spoken in a baritone voice with a slight New York City accent. There ensued a short conversation with the prospective tenant conveying to Real Estate Man interest in the advertised apartment on 20th St. The cultured sound of this man’s voice didn’t match with the modesty the apartment about which he was inquiring. Real Estate Man tried to suggest something more…..appropriate? (a practice that Real Estate Man found out the following year was against the Real Estate Code of Ethics, albeit for different reasons). Sensing this man was not the type to follow anyone’s suggestions, Real Estate Man made an appointment for 3:00 that afternoon.
These were the pre Skype, Zoom days. Everybody had the pleasure (challenge?) of picturing what the person on the other end of the line resembled before they met personally. Real Estate Man must admit, he has never envisioned anyone anywhere near what they actually looked like just on telephone voice alone, male or female. This time was no exception.
Pulling up in front of 311 S. 20th St. was a station wagon with the name of a church on the side driven by an attractive woman. Out of the passenger side stepped the prospect, introducing himself as Jack.
Real Estate Man’s story:
The combination of obviously strong personality along with the huge size of this man was …arresting. Could he even fit into the advertised 1 bedroom? That’s not all, there was something else. This 6’ 4” ,280 pound shaved headed colossus of a man was, every inch of him, tattooed. Although I couldn’t see under his tank-top and shorts, I don’t imagine anything going on in there was any different. He was in his 50’s. Some of his tats had faded a bit.
He, of the huge muscular frame, mellifluous cultured voice, forceful presence ……with a body 100% covered with tattoos and I entered the building to see the apartment. Jack liked it and took it in a rare first close for me. The female driver of the church van (whose name I never got) wrote out a deposit check (church checking account). I got names, numbers, references and all the other vitals to, hopefully, get a better picture of the man who, for all intense and purposes, WAS a picture.
My research on Jack yielded some of the most unique and interesting information that a background check has ever yielded.
- Jack was in the Ginness Book of Records as most tattooed man in the world back in the 1960’s
- Jack was a circus strongman before that. As a strongman he was known, among other feats of strength, for bending railroad spikes.
3.Jack’s source of income was a trust set up for him to be caregiver to a man who was a stroke victim. The man apparently came from a wealthy Main Line family but had no surviving relatives. The executor of the trust was a Philadelphia attorney, not a relative. Evidently the man had — only Jack. He was to be Jack’s roommate in the small apartment. Jack on a convertible couch in the living room surrendering the bedroom to his afflicted patient.
I talked to the executor attorney for quite some time, good guy. He told me Jack and his charge were to receive a monthly rental stipend to pay me the rent. As a matter of fact, the money would be sent directly to me from the trust.
Jack “Drac” Baker and his convalescent roommate moved in, slowly….then suddenly they were there.
Jack was a raconteur; an excellent communicator, specializing in unique conversational topics. By way of limited example; Jack observed that 90% of the women he met were frightened to even talk to him. His conjecture was based on the fact his strange tattooed masked face and head, his massive tattooed body, obviously bursting with physical strength, was a turn-off to 90% of the world’s females. Jack acknowledge his visage was overwhelming to most people. This pronouncement was Jack’s personal observation (at odds with many phycologists). He went on to say that the remaining 10% of the world’s female population were so obsessed with his look, they wouldn’t leave him alone. He contended those 10% sought him out, found him irresistible; he could have his way with all of them, no matter what that way was.
Quickly calculating the number of women in the 10% pool the year Jack and I talked; roughly 14,071,099 females in the United States alone were vulnerable to Jack according to Jack.
Women were attracted to him , however. He was rarely without one.
I really liked Jack and he seemed to like me — at first. He had the presence of the showman he certainly was. Friendly, great conversationalist/story teller. He was that waY — until he wasn’t.
The rest of this tale will be in a subsequent Real Estate Man story . I look forward to sharing it with you.