Thursday, February 08, 2007

How many midget burglars w/poor troubleshooting skills do you know?

Coffee cup in hand, I was enjoying my first Saturday morning as a home owner. Still in my bathrobe, I had been up maybe 20 minutes and I was in the living room marveling at how nice the sunlight comes into our front two rooms.


I’m being serious.

This is what being a homeowner is like in the beginning.

Much like a new romantic relationship, you find incredible enjoyment at the littlest of things. Finding out the heater works? Leaves you beaming all day long. The hot water not only works fast, but lasts a whole shower? FANTASTIC!

It can be sickening and downright boring to everyone else, but to you? Yes, the fact that you have a sunny living room is, like, the highlight of your morning. Because it is YOUR living room.


My point here…

Oh – right.

So I’m in the living room, bathrobe adorned, coffee sipping, sun marveling, and there’s a knock at the door.

What the hell. It’s 8 in the freakin’ morning on a Saturday and there’s someone at our door already?

I tip toe to the door (because we have creaky floors) (and yes, for the record, we love those too), and I peak through the peephole.

Why, there’s a man who looks an awful lot like a cop standing on our porch.


We’ve been in the house all of 7 days and we’re already being visited by the police?

Just fabulous.

Being the good law-abiding residents that we are, I open the door figuring there must be some random explanation for our uniformed visitor, and it couldn’t possibly involve us breaking the law.

Cop guy: “Is that your car parked out there ma’am?”

(I quickly make note that he’s pointing at Trevor’s car that is parked at the curb directly in front of our house)

Me: “Yes.”

Cop guy: “Would you mind moving it please? Your neighbor next door has called and complained that she cannot get her car out of the driveway.”

(At this point I’ve sized up that the car is a bit close to the driveway)

Cop guy continues: “She wanted us to come and tow the vehicle…”

(Tow? TOW? Why the hell didn’t she just come and ask us to move it forward 12 inches?)

Cop guy: “…however, if it’s yours and you’re able to move it…”

(um, YEA)

Cop guy: “…I’d rather we just do that.”

(I’d rather we just do that too)

Me: “Uh, yea, bit of a no-brainer there. I’ll get dressed and take care of it.”

At this point I’d like to provide a little bit of background information…

- We were warned by the previous owner’s brother (the surviving heir) that the neighbor next door is a bit “crazy”. Given that the previous owner’s brother was a bit on the “loo-loo” side himself, we just assumed she was “old-lady crazy” and figured we wouldn’t hear much from her.

- Of all the driveways on the block, hers is the only one with painted red on either side.

- For the record: Trevor’s car was technically in the red, but not blocking the driveway.

Now I’d like to provide a little bit of background information on the neighbors garage/driveway situation:

- Her house makes our house look good (we bought a “fixer-upper”)

- Her garage should be leveled as it is clearly a deathtrap for any rats that live in it.

- At this point in the game, we were not entirely sure of her even owning a car, let alone housing it in the deathtrap-for-rats garage of hers. I.e. she had not driven a car in the time we had been there, and therefore, well, what the hell was all the URGENCY about?

- Her driveway is no more than a dirt pad with tire marks. At the foot is a small 3 foot high fence that runs the length of the foot of her drive and then stops at our property line. The fence is locked at all times by a chain and padlock. Additionally, she stakes two pieces of rebar into the ground against the fence and wedges them in place by large rocks.

We assume this is her idea of a “secure gated driveway”.

Note: the fence ends at our property line where there is NO fence to continue on from there. So, if any intruder is thwarted by the chain/padlock/rebar/rock security system, and they don’t think to merely step OVER the fence, then they can just walk around the fence on our property line and get onto her property that way.

To do what exactly, I don’t know.

I suppose what I’m getting at here is that her security system is probably only effective on midget burglars with poor troubleshooting skills.


Trevor’s car was encroaching on her driveway and I headed out to move it. At which point I discovered a parking ticket on the windshield.

To sum up:

- the night before Trevor parked the car and didn’t pull far enough forward.

- at 7pm the Crazy Old Lady (from this point forward will be referred to as the COL) called the police and they came and ticketed the car for inappropriate parking.

- at 8am the following morning she called the police, apparently appalled that the car hadn’t budged in 12 hours, and asked them to come tow the car.

Not once did she come by and ask us to move the car.

Given this was our first interaction with the COL, we gave her the benefit of the doubt. She’s old, lives alone, probably isolated. I figured she felt intimidated about coming and introducing herself, and maybe she didn’t even realize it was our car. We’re new to the neighborhood, she probably hadn’t noticed what kind of cars we drive at this point.

Oh how empathetic and benefit-of-the-doubting I can be sometimes.


Blogger Michele said...

Are you going for some sort of blogger of the year award here? You are on a roll!

2/08/2007 8:37 PM

Blogger Liz said...

Welcome to the wacky world of owning a home. I will raise you one Crazy Old Lady and add a kareokee singing asian man that feels completely comfortable serenading the neighborhood at midnight.

2/09/2007 1:56 PM


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