They found my secret apartment complex!

May 26, 2010

census sled 490

Back in March, I wrote “Five annoying things about the Census.” It’s one of my most popular posts for the year so far. Apparently others share my annoyance.

One of my complaints was that they sent THREE forms, in THREE envelopes, marked Apartment 1, 2 and 3, to my single-family residence. Neighbors tell me there may have been apartments here long ago, but shouldn’t that have been sorted out by now?  I wondered if I would be in trouble if I only returned one of the forms.

notice of visit 280I filled out one form, answered it honestly, and mailed it back to my government.

This week I went out to dinner, and when I returned I found two things called “NOTICE OF VISIT” stuck in my door from a Census employee who, sure enough, seems to be stalking residents of the non-existent apartments number two and three.

She left them despite the fact that there is nothing on my door to remotely suggest multiple apartments.

I have to wonder what Census Lady’s plan was, since obviously I can’t prove I’m just the good citizen in Apartment 1.

I suspect she was going to zap me with a Taser, handcuff me to the radiator and scramble from floor to floor, looking frantically for the extra people I’m obviously hiding here in my secret giant apartment complex.

Failing to find them, she no doubt would have zapped me again on the way out and said something in a heavy Eastern European accent, like “Ve haff vays of making you talk!”

Indeed, each of the notices she left said, “I’ll stop back in the next day or two.”

You just do that, Census Lady. This time, me and all the other tenants will be ready for you.


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U.S. Census Bureau Director Robert M. Groves gets a ride in a dogsled from the Noorvik airstrip into the remote Inupiat Eskimo village in Northwestern Alaska in this January 25, 2010 handout. REUTERS/Al Grillo/U.S. Census Bureau/

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You should probably line your entire apartment with aluminum (aluminium for you, Shra) just in case they bring a remote zapper. The foil will protect you and your extra people! :)

Posted by Jibberish | Report as abusive

At the very least, Robert, you can use one of Unca’s patented design aluminium foil head-cones, and make sure the secret flats remain secret…

Posted by justM | Report as abusive

“Ve haff vays of making you join ze Oddly Enough blog network!”

Don’t let them fool you Mr. B., they are really out looking for LMR!

Posted by iflydaplanes | Report as abusive

The senseless census!

One stopped by my house a few weeks ago looking for a street address that didn’t exist, but was obviously one of my neighbors with the last two digits of the address transposed. Same last name and everything. When I tried to put this poor soul on the right track, she wouldn’t go for it and continued walking up and down the street for the next half hour looking for the missing house. I think they took her away with a butterfly net later on…

Posted by AllThatJazz | Report as abusive

Hey!!! She cant tase you BG, thats only my job! You hear me! Get me to this Census lady and I’ll tase/zap her!!!
No one zaps my OE friends!!!!

Posted by Shra | Report as abusive

I worked for the Census as an Official Enumerator (census lady to you.) She will be back, and if you are not there, she WILL find somebody to tell her about the apartments and tenants you claim do not exist.
It’s the rule.
Same with OP’s comment on trying to find missing address. Somebody mapped that location – and before it’s deleted from the permanent record, it’s has to be double verified.

Posted by GoingLikeSixty | Report as abusive

That’s very good news, Sixty… It’s like somebody just handing me free blog material.

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

Mr. Basler, as I read with keen interest about your secret life as a real estate mogul, with various residences stashed away here and there, I glanced back at your picture. What is it–new glasses? You look like Brad Pitt’s slightly older brother.

Posted by ladylala | Report as abusive

This could mean war….

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

Perhaps they thought you were living in a Tardis.

Posted by Logrus | Report as abusive

lalalady, you say that like it’s a GOOD thing.

Posted by AllThatJazz | Report as abusive

[...] See the article here: They found my secret apartment complex! | Analysis & Opinion | [...]

It was awesome, Spinster!

I gnawed through my restraints, crept past my guards, and got to the neighborhood 7-Eleven for a Big Gulp before they found me.

So that was my vacation for this year. Boy, it sure beats last year’s by a mile!

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

Are you serious, Spinster? That would have been a dream come true! No, last year they made me go to Las Vegas…..

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

pssst BG only made it to the circle k last store year…then the search for a new supplier for medi doughnuts was over

Posted by ochoo | Report as abusive

Spin.. you really shouldnt have.. now we are gonna hear no end of his littanies…

Posted by Shra | Report as abusive

Clearly, Shra is moonlighting as a Census Lady across the pond. It’s the only explanation.

Posted by LMR | Report as abusive

LMR, sadly no.. hell, I would have had a LOT many BETTER things to do over the pond, than be a Census Lady *shivers*

Posted by Shra | Report as abusive

Jazz, are you sure it’s a bad thing?

I mean, Robert having new glasses could be counterproductive, I agree, but then again, that might mean he starts putting the right sprinkles to the medidoughnuts again!! Now, bring them on!!

Posted by justM | Report as abusive

Julie is right. I’ve got a tight September 1 deadline for the summer exhibition, and it’s taking up all my time.

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

I love the drive-by commenters, like Ms. Sixty here, and the guy who educated us on Harrison Ford’s real height. They add a little spice to the blog. Or stir up the pot as some might say.
Now, as for the foil advice, Blog Guy – have you purchased a pallet of Reynolds Aluminum Foil yet? You might need to double layer your apartment since it sounds as if these census people are persistent! ;)

Posted by Jibberish | Report as abusive

Jib, MR. Sixty is hardly a drive-by commenter. He’s been a faithful reader and a writer of carefully selected comments going way back in this blog.

Posted by rcbasler | Report as abusive

Mmmmmm, taste that finely aged leather, and that delicious sole! I have got to stop sticking my feet in my mouth – my shoe bill is killing me!
Sorry Mr. Sixty. I hope you’ll accept my apologies and believe that I will use this as a learning experience.
Now I most definitely need some medicated doughnuts!

Posted by Jibberish | Report as abusive

You said anything about learning, JB? Wanna taste the zapper next?

Posted by Shra | Report as abusive

I have some more fodder for you.

My wife and I returned our census, but a guy stopped by anyway. We asked why, thinking our form wasn’t received. “No,” he told us, “I don’t know if we got it or not.” Apparently they personally visit every apartment within a certain distance of a college no matter what.

Posted by drewbie | Report as abusive

A guy turned up on a push bike to check that my postcode was correct for next years UK Census, now that’s dedication.

Posted by knit_nurse | Report as abusive

He was quite out of breath when he arrived. Maybe he was looking for something else altogether.

Posted by knit_nurse | Report as abusive

[...] for instance, my hard-hitting piece on the Census folks’ search for secret apartment houses, and the one about increasing food supply by growing rice in [...]

[...] for instance, my hard-hitting piece on the Census folks’ search for secret apartment houses, and the one about increasing food supply by growing rice in [...]

[...] the news came directly to me as a cosmic gift. Like those blundering U.S. Census folks who are sure my house is honeycombed with secret apartments, and those morons from the University [...]

[...] dwelling was actually housing countless lodgers, and their surprise visits looking for an Apartment 2 and Apartment 3 somewhere in my [...]