TUCSON, AZ–Jodi Hennings, 24, ex-girlfriend of area resident Rich Zeger, 25, announced Tuesday that she will arrive at 5:15 p.m. Thursday to pick up an end table from the apartment the two had shared until eight days ago.
"I'm coming straight from work, so please be there," Hennings told Zeger during the 40-second telephone call she made from her new apartment, the location of which is unknown to Zeger. "Dave and I have tickets to a show, and I don't want to be late, so make sure to be around, okay?"
The 3' x 6' varnished-oak-veneer end table, which Hennings said should easily fit into the GMC Jimmy of her new boyfriend, Dave Klapisch, was purchased by the former couple at a yard sale in July 1996. Also acquired at the sale were a Rubbermaid juice pitcher and a tape dispenser, custody of which is currently in doubt.
"We both paid half for the end table," said Zeger, sitting on the floor of the apartment he and Hennings shared for nearly three years. "But I'm pretty sure Jodi was the one who picked it out, so I guess it counts as hers."
In order to be home at 5:15 p.m. for the end-table pick-up, Zeger, a clerk at Insty-Prints copy shop, will have to leave work early, resulting in a stern reprimand from his supervisor.
"I'm totally gonna get reamed by [store manager] Peter [Goertz] for leaving early. The worst part is, Jodi acted like she didn't even know I'd be working then, even though I've had that same shift for the past year and a half," Zeger said. "But she said Dave and her were going out of town on a three-day weekend, so the only day they could pick up the table was Thursday."
Other items claimed by Hennings in the breakup include the microwave, all the dishes and silverware with the exception of a mug reading, "Rich's Coffee," the futon, the answering machine, a "shower caddy," and a halogen lamp.
Hennings also took the former couple's two cats, Percy, who originally belonged to her, and Michelangelo, who had belonged to Zeger.
"Jodi read somewhere that it's bad to split up cats that have been living together for awhile, so she took both of them," Zeger said. "I'll really miss Michelangelo, though. I've had him since he was a kitten."
Thursday's end-table pick-up will be Hennings' third trip to the apartment since the couple's Aug. 18 split.
"The first time she came by, I thought she maybe wanted to talk about getting back together," Zeger said. "But it turned out she just wanted the bath mat."
During both prior visits, Hennings was accompanied by Klapisch, which made Zeger uncomfortable.
"Seeing Dave help her carry her stuff out was really weird, because I already sort of knew the guy. For the past few months, he and Jodi were taking this Tae Kwon Do class together, and I was always taking phone messages from him," Zeger said. "Then I met him face-to-face when he picked her up to go rock-climbing one weekend."
"That was like a week before Jodi said it just wasn't working out between us anymore," Zeger said. "She said we'd both been ignoring the obvious problems in our relationship."
Beyond the loss of household possessions, the breakup has inflicted a heavy financial toll on Zeger. Until he can find a roommate, he must pay the apartment's $600 monthly rent by himself, in addition to the entire security deposit, half of which has been returned to Hennings.
"It really sucks, man, but what can you do?" said Zeger, who is supplementing his Insty-Prints income with bi-weekly visits to the local plasma-donation center. "I guess I should start looking for a roommate."