Saturday, September 18, 2010

The Woes of Suburbia

Have you ever felt so stunningly overwhelmed by life and its Life Challenges that it sort of felt like your brain was being chewed on by hungry weevils? Yes? Well Monkeys, *I* have. In fact, yesterday was just such a day. Without going into stupefyingly boring detail about all the Thoughts preying on Your Favorite Writer, I'll tell you one thing that is getting my knickers in a twist.

My subdivision.

When we moved about 2.5 years ago from our old subdivision, I'd thought we'd found a home that would feel like a vacation - gorgeous pond view, tons of space, full basement, PLACES TO HIDE FROM THE CHILDREN....

And then we had to deal with Subdivision Problems. Like other people. I now know why people live in the middle of nowhere in Serial Killer Shanties.

One lady, we'll call her the Pool Nazi, went around the 'hood this summer spying on houses with kiddie pools and writing letters of complaint; when the HOA didn't give a crap (because, really???) she called the city and tried to get them to fine people. True story.

Someone else has called and complained to the HOA as well as animal control about my dog, making him out to be a Man Eater. Sure, we've had to pry the occasional toddler from between his teeth, but we limit him to eating only ONE solicitor a week.

Yesterday, my bffnd (that's biff next door) called to tell me that someone had stashed an anonymous letter in her door...and the letter? Complaining about my dog. Again.

Cue heavy sigh.

So, being the ever politic cherub that I am, I posted an informative scathing letter on our HOA public web forum. Yes, my dog is big. BIG. He's also old, tired and less likely to bite you than a temperamental Pomeranian. Frankly, my obese house cat is far more dangerous.

From this person's letter, you'd think that our dog was out roaming around, hiding in bushes and spitting the mail man's femurs out before attacking the UPS guy. My BFFND told me I was giving the matter too much attention, but seriously? This is the second or third issue we've had with anonymous dog complaints - and it's only because he's big. I see dogs of every breed in the neighborhood, sometimes off property even, and do they rate a complaint to the board? Nope.

True story: when my husband first moved into our old house, someone clipped out a news story about the poor woman mauled in her California apartment complex by a pair of Presa Canario
dogs, highlighted the breed and then enclosed it in a plastic baggie and left it in our mailbox. Yikes. All that was missing was if they'd cut out letters from the paper and glued it together in a Kidnapper-style note. It might have made sense if our dog had BEEN a Presa Canario. He's not. He's an English Mastiff.

If you google images, you'll find a lot of bored looking dogs with toddlers sitting on them. They're called Gentle Giants for a reason - they're bred for NON aggression.

And what REALLY, REALLY irritates me? My dog and I are arch enemies! I'm a cat person. CAT PERSON. Sitting on the sofa and petting my 16 pound emotional-eater cat relaxes me. Getting blown out of bed by the noxious fumes of my dog's digestive tract? Not so much. And when he walks up the stairs ahead of me - I swear he times it so he can let loose in my face.

But I've had to rally to his defense, which really bugs me; especially because I'm the same person telling him to go and meet Jesus in doggy heaven because I'm about to kill him for throwing up (again) after he's eaten the cat's food (again).

Of the two of us, I am far more likely to chew your shins off. Just saying.

And despite my promises to become a Cat Rescue after our dog trots off into the Great Beyond, I'm pretty sure now that we'll get another English Mastiff. They're great dogs, and theoretically, they could eat an obnoxious neighbor - but only after I've finished with them. Hey, I have to do something until I can purchase my Serial Killer Shanty in the Boonies.

Comments, questions, how's your HOA?


dirt clustit said...

yeah I've gotten several "anonymous" letters from the same guy about my dogs.

The barking has been driving him nuts for years. They are kept inside mostly and in Mark's defense he has exhausted all his neighborly avenues so I do go the extra mile so he can get his beauty sleep (he has trouble evidently going back to sleep if he is woken up)

but because I do keep two large dogs mostly indoors (now registered as "dangerous" dogs by the county) I really do not give a fuck if they wake him every once in a while.

Careful though about getting people in your neighborhood not liking you (I know you didn't say that but mentioned your occasional displeasure with a few of them)but from experience it is better to not have a couple of them complaining cause they will call in and complain about everything.

Luckily it just makes me giggle, but I did have to pay for those shits and giggles as I engaged in a mexican standoff with them and the county and the city and I won. Well, sort of, I refused to comply to their demands so the city had people come out and mow my lawn and trim the ivy so that it was not overhanging the sidewalk then they billed me for it. IT WAS FUCKIN EXPENSIVE.

They got the city to send me all kinds of threatening letters saying if I did not abate the nuisance vegetation I could be arrested for failing to comply with a court order.

whatever, fuck them, they might be able to make me pay $500 for a shitty yard maintenance job that should have only been 100 but they cannot make me do anything else.

considering I did not do on minutes worth of yard work all year and neither did I pay to have anybody do any work (except for the shitty city contracted job at $500) so I don't think it was that bad of a deal.

especially since those who engaged me in a game of biggest asshole where fuming for 7 months while I giggled I think this will become my standard routine.

oh yeah I also put a nice wooden sign in my yard the read "tall weeds" just for a couple more laughs.