Bust­ed Win­dow, Click to see larg­er image

Liv­ing in the sub­urbs can be tedious at times.  I don’t have a dri­ve­way, which means I have to part on the street.  Which means that a min­i­mum of twice a week some­time three, I am mov­ing my car first thing in the morn­ing for alter­nate side street clean­ing rules.  A per­son­al pain in the ass if you ask me, but I live with it, and the occa­sion­al park­ing tick­et because I just plain for­got to move the car, or did­n’t get there before the police offi­cer did with his trusty pad and pen.

This morn­ing I went out­side to move my car, get a cof­fee, and bagel.  Upon my return as I was dri­ving by look­ing for spots to park to avoid a tick­et i saw a com­pact car in front of my place with a bust­ed win­dow.   I have seen the car here for the past cou­ple weeks, so assum­ing that it is some­one who just moved to the area.  Plates are from Geor­gia.  First thought, “that sucks.”  Sec­ond thought, “oh, shit, that’s right in front of my place (actu­al­ly with­in 30 feet).   I thought, “Shit, here it comes, now it’s only a mat­ter of time before some­one busts in my win­dow for some over priced piece of elec­tron­ics I acci­den­tal­ly leave on the seat.”  Or worse, watch me as I unload my rifles and ammo from the trunk of my SUV com­ing home from the range after a cou­ple hours of shoot­ing (if this has not hap­pened already).  That would be much worse.  Who needs their place bro­ken into and their guns stolen?  Ugh.

Too say the least, my alert­ness lev­els are up a notch.  My eyes are scan­ning the street every time I go out­side now, and I am try­ing to make men­tal note of who is not from the neigh­bor­hood every time I see some­one new walk­ing by…

At some ear­ly time of the morn­ing before the sun came up, I did hear a crash or thud, or some­thing, because I had my bed­room win­dow open to let the cool air in last night.  I just rolled over and went back to sleep.  Might have been the per­pe­tra­tors.

So, what is this begin­ning to con­firm for me.  Par­don the pos­si­ble degrad­ing remarks, how­ev­er, I have been notic­ing the ele­ment start­ing to degrade in the neigh­bor­hood.  i.e. more punks, more rough look­ing indi­vid­u­als dur­ing the day, peo­ple up milling around the streets all hours of the night (lit­er­al­ly).  I know what you might be think­ing.  I know that you can­not judge peo­ple by how they look.  I get that.  But, I can­not deny the plau­si­bil­i­ty that things are get­ting worse in my lit­tle neigh­bor­hood.  There are oth­er signs as well.  One of the guys, I call him the neigh­bor­hood slum­lord because he dri­ves up in his “slick 10 year old BMW, owns the crap­pi­est look­ing rental on the street, and is always look­ing at rent­ing places he can bare­ly rent out in his place.  How do I know this?  Years ago when I was look­ing in this area for an apart­ment I looked at his place.  It was hor­ri­ble.  And he want­ed an arm and a leg every month for the rent.  Anoth­er sign is when I go out onto my back deck which is on the sec­ond floor of the house I am in, I can over­look sev­er­al back yards.  In one of the homes, there are renters that have been there about sev­en or eight months that are loud, obnox­ious, etc.  Par­don the expres­sion, but trashy.  I am no elit­ist.  Trust me.  But the col­lec­tive pic­ture I am get­ting and vibe from the neigh­bor­hood is not a good one at the moment.  As I men­tioned, it is get­ting worse.

What to do about it?  Mon­ey is tight at the moment, as it is for many oth­ers, which may be why so many peo­ple are out and rest­less mak­ing their pres­ence known to oth­ers.  I real­ly would like to find anoth­er neigh­bor­hood, or a bet­ter place to live if this per­sists, but I like my deck on the back of my apart­ment, and I real­ly do not want to sac­ri­fice a cou­ple of the ameni­ties that I am afford­ed.  One of which is my prox­im­i­ty to the air­port.  Some of you may not think 15 — 20 min­utes from a major air­port is an ameni­ty, but when you do a lot of trav­el­ing for busi­ness it is an ameni­ty.  Espe­cial­ly after a long week of trav­el, I do not want to dri­ve an hour to get home when I get back from a long trip.

So, what to do.  Mon­ey is tight for me.  I am work­ing on a cou­ple of projects, but want to save the extra mon­ey I am earn­ing, not spend it on a new place or oth­er stuff.  I have not been able to save mon­ey in a cou­ple of years, so it is nice to get a few dol­lars back in the bank, “just in case.” To boot, I still have a lit­tle debt I am pay­ing off, and an IRS audit that I had to con­tent with a year ago, and now the state wants their share of that mon­ey.  Time to hire a tax attor­ney…  What a pain in the you know where.  But more on that lat­er.

It is only a mat­ter of time before the crime in my neigh­bor­hood gets any worse.

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