Thursday, October 31, 2013

The Never-Ending Turf War

As I’ve mentioned in previous posts, my mother is quite the homemaker. In addition to her cleaning skills, she loves to garden. She will often come into the house covered in dirt and tell me to come witness her newest creation. Sadly, my lack of a green thumb means I seldom if ever identify what she’s talking about. I am an expert though on how to smile, nod, and compliment: “Mom, those are beautiful!” In addition to her flower beds, she has the nicest lawn in the neighborhood. Part of the reason for the gorgeous lawn is the diligent seeding, watering and mowing, but part of that is due to the fact she chases the neighborhood kids off as soon as they step foot onto her lawn. My father, brother and I take great pleasure in laughing about the ‘Mom vs. neighborhood kids’ battle. However, I am taking this opportunity to publicly apologize as I know understand her agony.

I am officially AT WAR with the kids in my neighborhood. This has been going on for a few weeks now and I’m not getting any closer to victory. In fact I think they are gaining on me. If nothing else they certainly outnumber me.

I do not have a lawn or a garden, but I have a small yard with a wall around it at the front of my house. Inside the yard is a metal pole with a three cornered clothes line. Until recently there was a second pole with the television antenna also in the front yard.

A few weeks ago I decided to work from home. I kept hearing a lot of banging out front but didn’t think much of it until I realized whatever was going on was hitting the windows at the front of my house. I went to see what it was and found several neighborhood kids climbing along the 12 foot tall walls around the yard, then jumping from the walls to swing on the clothes line pole, they would then propel themselves against the side of the house until they came to rest on the ground. I went out there, told them this was very dangerous, I didn’t want them to get hurt, and they couldn’t play in my yard anymore.

One evening during a blackout I found the kids had detached the television antenna pole from the bindings on the side of the house. They had somehow managed to get the pole up on top of the walls and reaching across the wide open space of the yard. One kid was sitting on each end of the pole, while the other kids were moving across the bar, some like monkeys using their arms and legs, others as if it was a balance beam! I nearly had a heart attack. Once again I opened the door, and like rats on a sinking ship they scattered. I didn’t even have the chance to say anything they got away so quickly.

Last night was the final straw. A few days ago I had caught the kids with the antenna pole again, so I gave it to the garbage men. They told me they couldn’t fit it in their truck, so they left it and said they would return before the end of the week to collect it. We didn’t make it that long. The kids must have caught on to my plan because I could hear them outside with the pole. I looked out to see them throwing it across the parking lot at one another as if it was a spear.

I burst through the front door with such force they didn’t have the chance to escape. There must have been five or six of them, but they were all the same size and looked almost identical, and they kept moving around, so I had a hard time keeping track of them. I opened my mouth ready to attack and EVERY SINGLE ONE OF THEM says, “It wasn’t me! It was that guy!” and instantaneously pointed at a different little kid.

I feel like the guy from Caddyshack with the gophers. Here’s hoping this story will NOT be continued….

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