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East Village Man Refuses To Leave “Nightmare” Apartment


09.30.14 Rhett Jones

Rory Denis has lived at 338 E. 6th St. for 44 years and he’s not leaving now, despite his landlord’s pleas.

“He’s just trying to stop the inevitable,” says Esteban Vazquez, the contractor in charge of renovating the building.

“I was born here, I’ll die here,” Denis tells the Post. “My yellow toenails are going to be embedded in the staircase as they drag me out.”

Though the apartment is rent stabilized, according to Vazquez, Denis “says it’s not about the money, it’s about the memories.” Considering that Denis landlord claims to have offered him $60,000, that might be true.

At this point, Denis has endured renovations for the entire building, all but the fourth floor — his floor.

“The stairway is like playing mousetrap… It’s a nightmare,” says Denis, who had to take his landlord to court last year after she cut off his water and electricity. While he awaited the court proceedings, he simply bathed at the Ethiopian restaurant downstairs, which bears the incredibly appropriate name “Awash.”

Denis eventually won the case and still has no plans to leave. After all, who needs water or a usable staircase when you have Game of Thrones? “They strong-armed me,” he said. “I was living without water and heat. But I had HBO.” It’s the little things in life that get you by. (Photo: Google Street View)