2.16.2005

Escalation Diffusion and Promise

Note, apologies for any omissions or missed words or discontinued thoughts. This was sort of written in one big burst, well two big bursts. And now my eyes are hurting so I'm going to bed.

Beginning at 7 pm
Well, of course, things didn't stay quiet for very long. The neighbor's asshole pal was there today. I got home a minute after P, she was just getting Graydon out of the car and talking with the young lady who lives next to us with her dad.

We all come in the house and, by the time I got upstairs, someone had pulled in to the driveway, parked so as to obstruct the common area and make it harder for us to leave, again.

I went to the door and the guy who is staying at the house, doesn't own it, doesn't actually reside there, the same one who I had move his car the other day in the morning because he was unable to park it out of the way. He answers the door, he's obviously been drinking, he's obviously been stewing in his piss about my telling him to move his car the other day.

So he gets right up in my face and tells me to fuck off and get off his property. No reasoning, no nothing and he was very, very close to taking a swing at me. I'm not dumb enough to get into a fight with him as I'm well aware that there are five or six other people in the house and fighting is for idiots anyway.

I tell him all we want is to not have the cars parked in the way, its not too much to ask and is, in fact, our right to have proper access in and out of our house.

But he's not listening and is just itching for some reason to try and punch me. Apparently I was less than wholly polite the other morning when I made him move his car and that's been bugging him.

He threatened me physically a couple of times as I realized that he was incapable of rational thoughts and was not going to get anywhere. As I walked back across the garage, his kid or someone's kid came out and looked like he was ready to jump me as well.

A few minutes later, P and Graydon are heading out to go to swim practice (his first lesson which should have been cause for celebration but I didn't go because I don't feel safe leaving my house alone now which royally sucks ass). I walked them out because I knew the drunk fucknuts was going to take another opportunity to demonstrate his assholery.

And he did. Getting right up to shouting almost immediately. No listening to either of us, no listening to his wife, no listening at all. Just angry drunk...


Okay, hmm, so things have changed a bit since I started writing this. After much ugliness and unhappiness and calls made to try and figure out what to do and where to go because this house had become unlivable. There was no way that we would be able to live near such, well, meanness.

The good neighbor came down to help diffuse the earlier volatile situation and, later, after the bad neighbor got home, had a chance to talk to his folks and hear what had been going on. P came home with Graydon and I went back out to make sure the angry, angry guy wasn't around and looking to start something with her and my boy.

As we were getting the boy out of his car seat, P saw the neighbor is the garage and called out to him to ask him if we could talk, I think fully expecting him to say something nasty and walk away.

But he didn't. He came out, had the other guy close the garage door, and talked to us. We actually spoke for a long time, the angry guy came out, I found out it's his brother, and he was sent away. And we talked more.

At one point while we talked, all very calmly and all adult-like by the way. One of the two phones in my pockets began to ring and I knew it was the local police station returning my call as I'd asked for an officer to call me so I could ask his advice about the situation.

I stepped around the corner of the house and talked with him for a minute or two. It was a strange conversation too. It went like this.
"Hello, Mr. Huh? This is Officer Bob."
"Hi, thanks for calling me back, I appreciate it."
"You're welcome, sir, now, I understand you're having issues with your neighbor?"
"Well, here's the thing. We were having issues with our neighbor and, since I called in earlier, we've actually gotten together and are talking things out. And things are going really pretty well."
I thought I could hear his jaw drop and he replied, "Really? This might be a first for me," and I could tell he was astonished. And in a good way which was cool.
"Yeah, it caught us by surprise too."
"Okay, well, if you're sure you don't need us then good luck and good work on talking it out with him. Let us know if you do need us," and he hung up after I said thanks and good night. I was pretty sure he was going off to tell the first person he saw what had happened.

I went back to talk with him some more, we wiped the slate clean, we started fresh. He gave me his card, I will give him mine (no wallet then) and we have an open communication between our houses again.

A very equitable and welcome resolution to the earlier tension and discomfort. Of course, words are merely words and actions are the real proof in the pudding, so to speak.

I went up and talked with the good neighbor for a while afterwards, letting him know what had happened and how well it had gone. He was suitably pleased as well and there's really a great load of tension that's gone from all the houses. Well, except for the other neighbor's down the hill, they haven't reaped the new world order.

But then, she's kind of overwound anyway. She was amazed when P would take Nande for walks in the slough while she was pregnant, during the day! She fully expected roving bands of murderer/rapists to drag her into the underbrush. And my first interaction was her screaming at me to stop lighting firecrackers when I wasn't lighting firecrackers.

Oh well, I'm going to get some sleep, hope tomorrow holds the promise that tonight fostered.

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