I can just see the newscast. There are my bad neighbors, the Rudes, being interviewed, saying to the reporter, “We didn’t even realize that we had a neighbor! Then the next thing we knew, this crazy woman broke down our front door and started beating all of us on the head with a wooden spoon, screaming, ‘Move, damn you! Move, I say!’”
Yes, they’ve been at it again. I had backed out of my driveway and was waiting for the garage door to go down, when I glanced sideways at my beautifully landscaped driveway divider, with my precious yuccas, the ones I had nurtured for a year, only to see that one had been stomped on! I had noticed previously that the teenage son always took a “shortcut” through my landscaping when he took his dog out to poop behind my townhouse, rather than just walk down his own driveway, but I had restrained myself from saying anything. Now, as I sat there, seeing the smallest of my yuccas smashed down, my heart sunk and then slowly began to fill with rage!! Unfortunately I had a lunch date and didn’t have time to survey the damage. When I got back home, I changed into my work clothes and went out back, fueled by fury. I had to slowly release some of the leaves from the landscape rocks on the little one. Then, I noticed that some leaves on the big one had been broken by him and his dog brushing by. What’s wrong with these people?
At that point, I realized that, with people this dumb, I’d obviously have to stake out my property! So, armed with string, paint stirrers (I didn’t have stakes,) a screwdriver and a rubber mallet, I set out to hammer notches into the frozen earth, in order to get the stakes in. It was hard work, I’ll tell you, and I’m pretty sure I pulled a couple of muscles doing it, but the hammering was a good way to vent. As I was working, one of their cars pulled into their driveway to drop off the teenage boy, then backed right out and left. Moments later, he emerged with the dog, and, miracle of miracles, took the dog to the back of his own townhouse to do his business for the first time! He glanced at me and saw what I was doing, but didn’t say a word. I glanced at him, and kept hammering. The next day I saw the mother out with the dog, and she was frowning, obviously studying what I had done. Good! I hope she got the message, which was, stay the hell off my property, you destructive idiots!
There’s just something odd about this family in that they live their lives as if no one else exists. They have no respect for others or their property. I can’t figure them out.
All of this made me remember an old TV show that ran from 1985 to 1989 called “The Equalizer.” According to Wikipedia, “The series stars British actor Edward Woodward as Robert McCall, a former secret agent of an unnamed organization, which was often referred to simply as “The Agency” or “The Company”, who tries to atone for past sins by offering, free of charge, his services as a troubleshooter (often literally), a protector, and an investigator. People in need find him through a newspaper ad: “Got a problem? Odds against you? Call the Equalizer.” I remember watching this show and thinking how great it would be to have someone I could call to “take care” of certain problems. This guy would fight for justice and did it in a way that made the bad guys sit up and take notice. If only I had him now. I can just see it, him patting my hand, and saying, “Don’t worry, Star, all your neighbors need is a little persuasion to change their behavior. Trust me, they won’t bother you again.” And I’d smile gratefully, thinking, “my hero!”
All I want is peace and respect. Is that asking for too much? I think not.