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Gas Leak Only Decent-Smelling Thing in Punk House

CHICAGO — An undetected and increasingly dangerous leak from a gas main at the Rogers Park punk house, known informally as “The Shitbox,” is the only thing in the building that smells even remotely decent, including people, pets, and musical instruments, sources report.

“Normally, The Shitbox has the kind of fetid stink that you just don’t get used to,” said Jerome “Scabs” Mellen, a longtime semi-paying resident. “Most of the time, even if a smell is bad, you kind of just get used to it by chain-smoking indoors and not opening the windows. But recently, there’s been this new, fresh, almost chemically clean smell that really brightens this heap up. Someone must have gotten one of those Glade air fresheners or something.”

“Also, for some reason,” Mellen added. “It’s been easy to get really fucked up on like two Old Styles recently, I get crazy lightheaded almost immediately.”

Lenny Mackiewicz, the owner of The Shitbox, shares the enthusiasm for the untreated gas leak and its refreshing, crisp scent.

“That whole place basically turned into a tax write-off when those kids moved in,” said Mackiewicz, carefully keeping his distance from the building. “They’ve absolutely destroyed the place, and I can’t remember the last time they actually paid rent on time, not to mention being called a ‘stink slumlord’ to my face. I was planning on burning the place down and trying to pocket some insurance money, but I think this gas leak will take care of things for me. If anything, it’s increased the property value.”

People’s Gas service worker Garrison Brent is familiar with situations like this, and how a volatile, rapidly growing gas leak can actually be of benefit.

“I’ve seen it a hundred times,” said Brent. “You can always tell when there’s a gas leak in a punk house because they move slightly less than normal and throw up a lot more. But, for a few brief moments and a whole lot of dead mice, those punks will actually experience what it’s like to live in a place that doesn’t smell like a combination of rotten cheese, unwashed underwear, and an acoustic guitar that someone defecated in. It’s nature’s way of healing itself, really.”

As of press time, The Shitbox exploded in a maelstrom of bright green flames and a wall of stink waves that sources indicate caused a squirrel to faint.