“I couldn't live a week without a private library
- indeed, I'd part with all my furniture and squat and sleep on the floor
before I'd let go of the 1500 or so books I possess.” ― H.P. Lovecraft

Whistling In The Graveyard

Sunday, August 01, 2004

You're gonna need a little background for this one.

We moved into my Grandmother's old house eight or nine months ago. Eventually we got a lawnmower when we needed it and Jay has been keeping the lawn rather nicely. Problem is, we have a fence. In the front and back it's a nice chain-link fence. On the sides it's a crappy wire fence that I hated when I put it up 20 years ago and I hate it now. But it's outside the house and given the nature of our neighborhood I give less than a fuck about outside.

About the only thing the fence does is provide a place that the lawnmower can't reach conveniently, thus allowing a nice border of weeds to grow around the property line. This wouldn't be a problem, but our weed-eater sucks a dick.

Once again, it's outside, like I give a fuck. As far as I'm concerned, the weeds just help block out the rest of my shit-hole surroundings, so I've just let them go.

I have bigger things to worry about right now.

This morning I get a phone call.

It's my Mom. She informs me that the neighbor lady called her and said she was going to call the people from the city code enforcement department to come over is I didn't trim the border of my lawn.

Here I am, a grown ass man, scarcely a month away from my 30th birthday, and the woman next door called my Mom to tell on me.

Did someone think I'd not had enough indignities dumped on me lately?

I mean, I've had problems with neighbors in the past being afraid to talk to me as I am big enough to be (in their words) 'intimidating', but SHE CALLED MY FUCKING MOM.

This is the same neighbor that I mentioned in my Tuesday, March 30, 2004 post that called my mother complaining that Nate has been calling her a bitch when he sits on the front porch drinking beer and smoking pot.

As I pointed out then, there are a few problems with this.

#1: If Nate had called her a bitch, he would have told us he called her a bitch. Then he would have had a hearty laugh about it. Nate's a loveable sort of bastard that way.

#2: He does occasionally sit on the front porch drinking beer and smoking, but he hadn't done so recently.

#3: So far as I know there has never been any reefer in this house. Yeah, hate to burst your bubble, but it's not exactly "Fear and Loathing" over here.

At first we thought that she must have heard Nate talking to someone about something else and just assumed that Nate was directing it at her. We also thought that perhaps Nate had smoked one of his clove cigarettes on the porch and as it doesn't smell like a regular cigarette, she assumed it was pot.

Now we believe that she's just fucking nuts. I should have realized it when Grandma gave me the keys to the house. She said "Watch out for the neighbor lady, she's fucking nuts". Then she finished off her Miller High Life. Grandma kicks ass.

By the way, if I haven't said it out loud, I'm sorry that I gave her as much credit as I did at the time Nate. I mean, I never believed you did it, but I did think there had to have been some misunderstanding and there clearly wasn't. She's just a fucking loon.

So I went out to do the trimming. It took forever as the fucking weed-eater is a bitch to start (took a half an hour to do that alone) and then you have to stop it and take the head apart every time you need more string because the feeder button won't work.

But I'm out there trying to do it. Jr., the neighbor lady's husband (well, I presume they're married anyway, I don't see any other reason anyone would live with that woman...) comes out to give me his usual spiel about how nobody's had it harder than he has and how he's better and smarter than everyone. I don't know what's more galling, the fact that I have to hear every time I have the misfortune of talking to him, or the fact that he seems to believe all of it.

I'd like to think that in seeing how hard it was to get any work done with my crappy weed-eater might have made him realize that I wasn't simply being lazy about it (I mean, I was, but there was a little more to it than that), but he honestly isn't smart enough to make a realization like that.

He was kind enough, however, to point out that even though I've had a 'tough time' medically speaking, that he's had it worse and more often than I have and he manages to keep his yard trimmed. He also pointed out that he did the edging for my Grandmother for ten years FOR FREE and he likes to see it well maintained. I resisted the urge to tell him that I like to see my neighbors fuck off and leave me the hell alone, but I resisted as I didn't want them to call my mother again, or worse yet, my Grandmother.

Ain't that a bitch?

His wife Cathy, on the other hand, simply came out to glare triumphantly at me a few times as I tried to work.

Anyways, it took a few HOURS to do a lawn the size of a postage stamp (the last eight feet of weeds I just pulled by hand as it wasn't worth trying to restart the fucking weed-eater to do them) and I feel like a total wuss to admit that I'm actually hurting from the effort, but it's fucking DONE. Probably for the last time this season. After all, winter is just around the corner.

I know it needed done, but it wasn't that bad. If they had just said something about it I would have made more effort. Hell, I talk to them in passing every few days or so and they never said a thing. Cathy did mention it to Jay, but it must have been right before she ratted on me as the call followed hard upon the word reaching me. All I can say is she must really need something in her life if she's going so far as to call my Mom on me. I kinda feel sorry for her. Only kinda though. The rest of me is already working on ways to make her life hell if she has the temerity to try this again.

And I know she will. She got results by doing it once, so she will do it again. Some people are painfully simple.

By the way, if you were wondering, the weed-eater is a Craftsman. Don't buy one.


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