Tuesday, April 7, 2009

Cue the Banjos

There is a family in my neighborhood that really should not be living in a suburban subdivision. They should be living far out in the country. Probably in a trailer (sorry...."Mobile Home"). With truck tires in the yard, turned on the side, painted white, and filled with potting soil, where they can grow geraniums, cabbage flowers and/or weed. And, to paraphrase Jeff Foxworthy, directions to their house should include "turn off the paved road."

They keep their yard so poorly that it's an eyesore. They mow it, but not as often as they should. They have a shed in the backyard where they keep lawn equipment, but it's overflowing with crap. This is because of another little problem.....they took their garage and converted it to an extra bedroom or two, because there are so many people living under that roof. There appears to be a grandfather, a mom, a man in his early 20's, a teenage daughter, a young boy, and a toddler (the toddler might belong to the teenage girl). There might be more, but I don't know how many actually live there, because there are always about 4-5 cars out in front of the house. Their biggest form of entertainment, besides going to their daughter's fast-pitch softball games (which as everyone knows is brutal entertainment on par with watching "The Road Warrior"), is sitting on their front porch area, smoking cigarettes, watching cars drive by, and occasionally reach into a cooler of beer. It's like "King of the Hill" without the alley, the exterminator van, or comedy. Oh, and on Independence Day and New Years Eve night, they blow off about a thousand dollars worth of fireworks....from their front yard and the street.

This weekend, they built a deck onto their house. They did a quality job too, they got a Bobcat (which they ran until 10PM on Friday night, and fired it up again at 7AM on Saturday) and leveled the yard, and anchored it to their foundation, leveling the beams, etc. It's a very nice looking deck. Unfortunately, they built this deck on the FRONT of their house. It looks like any back deck you'd see on the back of any house in the area, where the family can relax, including deck chairs, cooler of beer (no grill yet), etc. But it's on the fucking FRONT of the house!!!

Here's the kicker....this house ALREADY has a back deck. They have a rather decent one, in the back yard. It's surrounded by grass that hasn't been mowed since May 2008, I'm guessing, and it overlooks a backyard patrolled by two pit bulls. So, this retarded family can't use their back deck, because the pit bulls will eat the toddler and the young boy, so they build a deck on the front of the house. Most of us, if faced with a similar situation, would opt for safety (removing the pit bulls), privacy (cutting the grass, planting hedges) and classiness (not having their shit in the front yard, and keeping mom off the front porch when she's wearing her ugly pajamas).

But not them. They live a "living on 40 acres, out in the woods, where nobody can hear our victims scream" lifestyle (much like the kidnappers in "Fortress" or the hillbillies in "Deliverance") in a nice suburban setting.

If only the housing market was better and we could sell the house and move.


  1. All the sudden my former meth neighbors don't sound so bad.

  2. Oh man ... before we moved from Acworth to Marietta we had the same kind of thing in our subdivision. Must've been 20 people living in a leased house across the cul de sac from us. At one point they parked a tractor trailer rig at the curb. Scary. Thank Odin that we got out of there - I can't imagine what the neighborhood is like now.

  3. Acworth and Kennesaw both have lots of new subdivisions, but plenty are from the mid 80's (like ours) whose covenants have expired. You can tell this by the front decks, tractor trailer rigs in the street, etc. But, I would never consider living anywhere other than NW Cobb County....west of Cobb Parkway, so that my kids can attend of of the new high schools.

  4. Luna, your neighbors would see this house and go, "dang, that's classy."

  5. fuck me.. this is some funny shit.. gd, i'm still laughing..

    please, please for the love of god.. take some pics.. please! i HAVE to see this! i have never seen a deck on the front of a house!

    the fireworks comment reminds me of my ex-brother in law.. he blew off thousands of fireworks, from the backyard (with trees and and open heavily grassy field behind them), with a cigarette and a lighter in one hand, and a running water hose in the other hand (in case shit caught on fire..)

  6. My inlaws use a trigger-activated blowtorch to light fireworks. It actually works well and is very safe, giving you time to fire off a mortar shell and then run.

    Just let go of the trigger (thus extinguishing the flame) before running towards a crowd of people.

    I'm praying this family has a jug band, and they practice on this new deck.

  7. Blowtorch fireworks lighter is Sconnie ingenuity right there. One year we used the Arc welder b/c no one had a lighter. And yes, we were drunk. And yes, someone got hit with a mortar tube that tipped over, it happens every year.

    Perrty mouth boy!

  8. Ditto the request for photos. Am still chuckling over the picture I now have in my head.

  9. uhm... slightly stupid question, but what is the difference between a deck and a front porch?

    You should read the book 'running with scissors' it might make you think of your neighbors. Sadly that book reminds me of my parents house a tad too much...

    There is also a movie adaptation of the book, which is fairly decent, but the book is by far better.

  10. I actually had Duelling Banjos playing when I read this. I keep it for when the neighbours have another fight.

    All I can think to right after what you wrote is........

  11. Claire, a deck is a wooden causeway of sorts, usually elevated, attached to a house, where the family can relax and look over the rear of the house at their vast acreage. Or at least the neighbor's trampoline. It is almost always behind a house, because that's where most sane people put a deck.

    The porch is nothing more than a cement walkway in front of their house, with a slight overhang that protects the repo man from rain when he visits this family. It's not a traditional "porch". This is the burbs, after all. Tracey Lawrence would not have sung a song about this porch in question.

  12. "is sitting on their front porch area, smoking cigarettes, watching cars drive by"

    That is awesome! If you can find a camera with an uncrackable lense - then, as has been mentioned, please grab a photo - preferably with the mum in her PJ's!

    I'll try and find the Australian equivalent.

    I may have asked you this before, but have you ever seen the movie 'The Castle'? It is an Aussie flick - and seriously funny. The best Aust film for yonks. It came out years ago, but the family in that, sound very similar to your neighbours.

  13. Thanks for the explanation you supplied to Sound Echo as to what a deck is, but – my apologies – it doesn’t sound that strange to me. It sounds like what we’d call a veranda, and they’d be either at the front or the back (though not many houses have them in Britain because the climate is too cold and wet).

    You’d only have one at the front if your house was set well back in a garden though, with a front hedge: perhaps that’s the distinction you’re making. If it’s easily visible from the main road I understand what you mean. Neighbours who have no shame are more than embarrassing; they’re disturbing.

  14. Yee haw Cletus. Git me the shotgurn.

    Does sound a bit Castle-esque but the Kerrigans were at least well-meaning westie bogans.

  15. This house sits on 1/3 of an acre (for those who go by the metric system....sorry, you're SOL). They're so close to the street that having a front deck is just ridiculous. If this was some English country estate, I could understand having a veranda, but this is not the case.

    For those of British extraction, this family would remind you a lot of Daisy and Onslow from "Keeping Up Appearances."

    Oh, and Claire....I meant in THIS case, the porch is an extension of the slab on which the house sits. Obviously, the traditional definition of a porch is a wooden deck-like structure in front of a house (although there is such a thing as a "back porch"). And the porch is often covered by an overhang that is often an extension of the upstairs level, or the roof line on a ranch house. A deck is often uncovered. This sticks so far from the house, it could only be a deck, not a porch. I'm still waiting for the BBQ grill to be relocated there, and when it gets warm I'll bet $100 they put a kiddie pool on it.

    Oh, and to my readers.....I got a weak photo with my Blackberry, and once I download it I'll post it. It'll give you a good idea of what this POS looks like.

  16. Good luck selling your house. I would suggest buying all of them a week long vacation the week you start showing it. Then, tow all of their cars and mow the yard. Maybe you'll get an offer before they get back.

  17. veranda sounds sexy...

    Simon, please fuck me on the veranda..

    Way better than - hey honey.. do me on the porch!


  18. Snow, that’s because fucking someone out on the veranda is sophisticated, indeed chic: it’s the sort of thing associated with a suave English gentleman meeting a woman at a house party in one of the Colonies, and spending a tropical night of illicit passion in the warm darkness, taking her up to and beyond the heights of ecstasy.

    A quick shag out in the porch, on the other hand, is extremely proletarian. Common people do not have verandas – which is clearly the point that Steve is making.

  19. sigh.. now i'm all turned on..

    Steve - post the damn pic!

  20. Ummmm ... I have a veranda. With ceiling fans and everything.

    Who wants to come over? (staring at snowangel).