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Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Tales of Suburbia: Leaves Me Alone

One day, my neighbors will probably call the police on me. It's pretty much inevitable.

First of all, our houses are all really superfrickingclose together, so chances are pretty good that my abberant behavior will not forever go unnoticed, even when inside my heavily mortgaged walls.

I play obscure Gilbert & Sullivan operettas on the phonograph (and not the normal ones, like "The Mikado" and "H.M.S. Pinafore"-- I'm talking about the ones only the hardcore buck-toothed gits know, like "Utopia, Ltd," "Ruddigore," or, if I'm in a really oddball mood, "The Grand Duke"). Not only do I play these on a phonograph, I do so loudly. And I always sing along, too. And I do so loudly.

Sometimes, when I'm in a playful mood, I can be seen (well, hopefully not seen) leaping about in various stages of undress, prancing around like a lemur, screeching in a high-pitched tone, eyes bugged, for no real reason other than boredom. Sometimes I just sit around at the computer and shout profanities when blog material doesn't come to me effortlessly.

It seems to help.

While my neighbors may think I have a personality disorder, or Tourrettes Syndrome, or a closed head injury, they don't bother me much-- and maybe it's because of that. This morning, I was out front raking leaves and laughing my ass off. My dog, who I routinely tie to the iron bannister while I'm outside, watched me demurely as I scooped up huge armfuls of wet leaves and dumped them into the bag, only to see about 75% of the leaves fall to the pavement again as the bag crumpled and shifted under their weight.

"AAAAAAAHAHAHAHAHA!" I roared in hysterics. "Is this what my life has become!? Jesus fucking Christ!" I screamed to the clouds above.

I have no doubt that somebody would have called the police, if the rest of the residents on my block-long street hadn't been at work or AA meetings. I mean, I admit it, I'm strange-looking. Thanks to the show I'm in, the oddity that is me is only now compounded by a walrus-moustache and side-burns that would only look appropriate on a steampunk artist or Civil War colonel. And there I am, laughing, in corduroy pants, a dress shirt and sweatervest as I ineptly rake leaves. While my dog's tied to the steps, watching me, thinking, "No, that's not my Daddy."

I wonder which neighbor's going to narc on me. It'll probably be Kathy who lives next door. I can tell she doesn't like me. She thinks I'm queer, in every sense of the word. I know it. And that's okay. I think she's a passive-aggressive bitch. While I was conversing with her the other day, she clipped an overgrowth of hedge right in front of me, while we were talking. My hedge. As if to say, "You are too irresponsible to do this yourself. Faggot. Shall I come over and dust and Febreze and maybe wipe your faggot ass for you, too?"

At first I thought she was nice, and helpful. Pointing out poison ivy that was growing in our yard, and giving us a bottle of poison ivy killer to get rid of it. Then she started to get manipulative, and condescending. I mentioned to her that we were having some stumps removed from our flower bed.

"Oh, good," she remarked, "then you can finally do something in there."

Really? Maybe I'll come over late one night with no pants on and do something in your flowerbed, honey.

I guess then she'd definitely be the one to call the police on me.

I'm not altogether thrilled with the people on my street. Sorry, Mr. Rogers, but it's just not working out. The Asian family never says "hi." Ever. I even rang their bell one night to let them know that they'd left the lights on in their CR-V. All the woman said was,

"Oh no! Hurry hurry! I fix! Oh no, no, no!"

You might remember the guy in the black Passat wagon. He yells at his kids and his dog. A lot. One day, I hope I don't have to call the police on that angry, bald humptyfuck.

I don't like the self-described "part-time accountant, part-time comedian" because he's very nosey, and, one day, I saw him standing on the corner dressed in some sort of full-bodied, furry mascot costume. And, when you're sixty years old, that warrants a call to the police, just by itself.

I do like the elderly gay man who wears glasses with plum-hued lenses, tweed sports jackets and cologne. When he talks, his turkey neck flaps around wildly and his capped teeth gleam in the sun. He's married with four grown children, and he's gayer than Oscar Wilde's neckerchief collection. Unfortunately, I don't interact with him much. He doesn't rake his own leaves.

Life in suburbia has its challenges, and I think, the more I live her, the greatest challenge I'm going to face is making it without getting the cops called on me. In the city, you can deal drugs to children, keep sex slaves in your basement and stockpile enough ammunition to put North Korea's arsenal to shame and nobody would ever even think to dime on you.

But, in the suburbs, you've got to watch your ass.


  1. I saw a young man with a Civil-Waresque looking moustache on a street corner last weekend. I wanted to hug him, and possibly lasso his moustache and take it as my own.

  2. I married Brian for his 1.3-acre, 1-neighbor piece of property.

    Oh,and for love.

  3. This is exactly why I love the city. Because of the Little Korea in my basement.


  4. Speaking of your neighbourhood, is the scooter guy still around? I wonder about him sometimes.

    I also wonder why leaves wear corduroy pants. It must be a smart area.

  5. It is a pretty smart area, Jay. Unfortunately, it's populated with moron bloggers who regularly commit solecisms against the English language.

    I've corrected the grammar of that phrase for you, and the spelling of "corduroy" for my wife.

    And may God bless & keep both of you.

  6. Oh, and I haven't seen the moped guy around in a while. Maybe he's accepted a position in Washington.

  7. Suburban living tends to make the panties wad for sure!

  8. When you live in the country, like I do, you have much better neighbors. Like the guy who lives behind me. We were discussing the neighborhood asshole. A quote from him: "I sure do miss the days when you could solve these kinds of problems with an axe handle...". Now that's good people.


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