August 28, 2009

Meanie lady on the block



I never wanted this to happen, but I am now officially the mean lady that lives on my block.

Last night I'm sitting in my studio, minding my own business. I start to hear some ruckus out in the street. I look outside and there are 2 boys. Youngish boys, probably around 5th or 6th graders. They have a can of Sprayable fun foam. They look mischievous. And then they started spraying the Stop sign at the end of the street. It's broad daylight, mind you.

They know it's wrong, as I'm watching them they are working fast as to do it without anyone seeing them. But yet, must think they are invisible, as it's broad daylight!!

They move on to the street sign, behind my hedge row so I can't see, but I can hear their giggles. They want to run, but they are so excited, looking for more. It's quite funny now, thinking back on it.

HOWEVER...Here is where the meanie comes out in me. If they think they can get away with that, they'll think they can get away with anything. What if, down the road, they end up using spray paint? This was done recently in my neighborhood so I felt a sudden urge to scare 'em up a bit.

I find myself moving quickly down the stairs, out onto the porch, down to the side walk. I walk briskly towards them, they see me, and start to run- just out of my site, behind a parked van on the street. They peek their little heads around to see if I'm still coming. My arm goes up, and there is a flick of the hand that says- "Come here. Right Now."

They start walking towards me. I'm surprised, and realize, I must look really serious, or really mean.
I give some stupid and nervous lecture about how it's wrong to do that, it's defacing town property, I'm sure they wouldn't appreciate it if they knew the boys were doing that, and if they don't stop I'm calling the police. The looks on their faces made me know they were scared shitless. (at this point, I felt a little bad, but a little good knowing that my lecture was working) At this point, I asked them where they live, I said I wanted to speak to their parents.

One of the boys, the bravest one, said "We'll clean it". I said" Yes, I would like you to clean it up!" I start walking back to my house, they go to the stop sign. They yell to me" I don't think we're tall enough!!" I said- " Get your parents, get a ladder, I don't care how you clean it, just do it."
Minutes later it was cleaned up, off of both signs. Afterwards, I felt like really- it's no biggie, it would have probably washed off in the rain, yadda yadda yadda. But since we've lived here, there have many instances of kids messing around with the local signs. Streets signs on our corner have been bent, dessert/cake has been thrown at the speed limit sign by our driveaway,
spray painted signs down the road. Enough is enough.

And we've had trouble with older boys that live up the street- one day they were walking by and one of them was throwing a plate up in the air and catching it. They were in front of our driveaway when the boy missed catching the plate and it smashed to smithereens in the street. They kept walking. We watched this out the dining room window while eating, but it was Joe who got right up and went out there and demanded that they boy pick the plate pieces up. See, it's not always just me!

You'd think they'd know by now, they can't get away with shit like that on our corner. Nothing had happened in quite some time. I was surprised to have to deal with this little quandry, last night.
I've also been known to anonymously call the police to complain of noise, last summer, when some high school kids were sitting in a parked truck with some very very loud base that shook every window in my house for an hour. Enough is enough.

I'm so mean.


23 comments:

  1. I don't blame you... when you become a homeowner and work so hard, you don't want trouble in your neighborhood.

    ReplyDelete
  2. Thanks Heather! I know it was necessary, I just feel kind of bad. I wonder if the boys told their parents. But if it prevents them from doing stuff like that in the future, then good. I accomplished something!!

    ReplyDelete
  3. It's not being mean, it is a call to responsibility for those boys, and as such, it is an act of kindness to them. You have invested wisely, not just in maintaining the personal property of your neighborhood, but in the lives of two young men.

    Good for you!

    ReplyDelete
  4. Funny how we turn into those "mean people" as we get older, isn't it?

    I was at a concert recently and had a moment...I was watching the concert, minding my own business, when I got slammed into from behind and (luckily) stumbled a few steps down the hill (my friend said she was surprised that I didn't eat it!)...

    So, I turned aorund to see a group of teenaged boys doing their little slam dancing thing (even though there's a spot on the hill set aside for the dummies who want to do that). I gave them the meanest "mean lady" glare and just said "NO." Apparently, the look worked - they stopped doing it...But, when I turned around, I was shocked that I'd turned into "that lady."

    But, we were there once (not THAT long ago) and remember how many silly things we did without thinking. Without a grownup to tell us "NO" every once in a while, think of all of the trouble we would have been in :o)

    Good job, Miss Lorelei :o)

    ReplyDelete
  5. I think it feels mean because it doesn't seem that long ago when we were kids and probably doing some things we weren't supposed to do.

    Good for you for holding those boys accountable. That was big that they volunteered to clean it themselves. But even bigger that you said something to them. That's not mean at all.

    ReplyDelete
  6. It's only mean when you do something like this with bad intention. When I was growing up in a small town, all the moms and neighbors never thought twice about calling us on our behaviour. For that matter they even called our moms. This is called social responsibility and teaching children to be responsible and respectful of others and their community is a good thing. We should all do more of that.

    ReplyDelete
  7. I think it was quite good that you were so firm and took the stand you did. After all what could be next if they arent made to think about what they are doing. Some fear early on by someone...namely YOU can maybe thwart future happenings. Who knows bad pranks slashed tire I mean we never know! Im sure they are nice and harmless but I think your firm hand and that someone is watching was a God send to all in your neighborhood Lorelei. Well done!

    ReplyDelete
  8. I think you did the right thing. These boys will remember this for a long time, and hopefully think twice before they do something worse in the future.

    When I was young a couple high school boys threw eggs at our house on Halloween. My dad chased them down and they spent their Halloween night washing off our house while their peers walked by and laughed at them. You see, they were taunting my oldest sister who was born with a brain hemorage. After that they treated my family with respect, nodding and saying hello when they passed us on the street.

    Don't feel bad about what you did. You know the saying about it takes a village...

    By the way, who would waste good dessert/cake to throw at a sign? Now that's a crime!

    ReplyDelete
  9. As a mother of a 6th grader and the self-proclaimed "meanest mother on the block" I applaud your efforts. I do believe that it takes a village to raise a child and you are exercising your right to protect that village and help to raise those kids right. I would expect that if my son were caught doing that that he should be scared shitless...you may just have stopped those boys from taking the next leap and getting into serious trouble. I can't be with my son at all times, so it makes me feel good to know that there is someone watching out for them and for the community...even though you live so very far away from me! Kudos to you, meanie lady! Thanks for joining the meanie club!
    Enjoy the day!
    Erin

    ReplyDelete
  10. Love your new banner!
    Good for you. We are all accountable to protect and defend our property and our community, and to do our best to guide youngsters, whether they are our youngsters or not. I applaud you Lori!

    ReplyDelete
  11. Anonymous8/28/2009

    Congrats on taking a stand. If you let it go they will do something again and you will begin to feel powerless. You also handled it an adult way, feel proud of yourself.

    Vikki

    ReplyDelete
  12. As the saying goes, "It takes a village to raise a child." You just helped these kids learn to be repsectful. Bravo for you!

    ReplyDelete
  13. Mel Mel8/28/2009

    I had to go to the Landlord once about the two teens across the street playing with fire and charcoal fluid !! Like you said maybe they were just being silly this time but if they are tempted to pull another prank like that in the future, they will remember that someone, anyone, may be watching! I wish you a peaceful weekend.

    ReplyDelete
  14. I think you dealt with it perfectly...now can you come to my house and deal with my pot smoking bass booming neighbors? Please?

    ReplyDelete
  15. Good for you! I would have done the same thing. It's too bad people no longer teach their children to be responsible people.

    ReplyDelete
  16. lol-good for you!! i'm also the mean lady on our block...makes me feel so old sometimes but you're right-it will just escalate to somethinng worse if they're not called on it. i think all kids need to have the shit scared out of them sometimes...

    ReplyDelete
  17. Social responsibility. Goes both ways too. I took one of my neighbors boy's to school because he was running late and it was freezing out. It's the village, the community, the social fabric of adult and child.
    Imagine how the child would feel if they knew an adult was watching behaviour that they knew was wrong, and the adult didn't say anything? Isn't that condoning inappropriate behaviour?
    So the next time you see those boys, just say hello. Then they won't see you as mean, they'll see you as the neighbor.
    cheers, Denise

    ReplyDelete
  18. I'm sure their parents would like to know that they are in a way being looked after. I'd want to know if my guy was doing something destructive. It's good you gave them the opportunity to own up to what they did and fix it and in that regard, I bet they will feel better about the situation and not think of you as "mean"

    Don't get me started about adults making excessive noise though.... : )

    ReplyDelete
  19. Silly string leads to toilet paper...which leads to eggs and inevitably the flaming bag of poop. Great job stopping it! I would have done the same thing.

    I hope you don't get any of the latter as a revenge move.

    ReplyDelete
  20. Trust me - you are not alone. We live on a very busy street - near a corner that houses the elementary school, the junior high school, the bus stop AND a skateboard park. Needless to say -teenager central. We've been lucky - no serious damage - but they are quite noisy, and like to SWEAR as loud as they can to see who they can offend first, and they love to toss their trash and do things like bend metal garden stakes, etc. We don't trust putting bills or important mail in our mailbox - as it's been vandalized a couple times - nor do I trust having beads sent to this address - too easy to spot those boxes of treasures. As a homeowner, and a tax payer, I am very protective of my space. (My husband kinda lets it roll....)
    And don't even get me started on the gangsta rap/bass booming music....I must be getting old - I am much less tolerant of the youngins these days.....

    ReplyDelete
  21. You did the right thing. Nothing mean about it.

    ReplyDelete
  22. Did you also tell them that this incident "will go down on their permanent records?" Just kidding - I would've done the same and I have called the police on noisy neighbors and the people whose dogs bark INCESSANTLY in the middle of the night so you are not alone!

    ReplyDelete
  23. Yeah, you're ready for kids. haha You did the right thing. That's great that you had the "balls" to yell at them. Most people wouldn't. Oh, and I like the new design on the blog. Such cute house charms. Love it!

    ReplyDelete

I'm sorry to have to turn on the word verification here, but I got fed up with spammers comments!

Better than a thousand hollow words, is one word that brings peace.
Buddha