Here I find myself, several weeks into a bout of writer's block that is not a matter of having nothing to say, but rather a matter have only grumpy things to say. I keep trying to wait out the crap until I have something cheerful to say, but I've decided that I won't find cheerfulness by allowing myself to fill to the brim with doom. Perhaps a little purging will help.
I just need to list the stuff that has happened in my neighborhood.
- On a gorgeous Spring day about three weeks ago, my next-door neighbor (a truly nice guy) died in front of my house. He slumped over in his little scooter right in front of my driveway. I'm glad he was out and about, because he loved the open air. Still...
- Early Sunday morning somebody knocked on a neighbor's front door. As the neighbor was unlocking the door, a gun was fired through the closed door. The refrigerator next to door stopped the bullet from continuing into the front room where the children lay sleeping. It's one of those places where a dozen people are shoved into 500 sq ft. And people come and go all hours of the day and night. It was about something, but everyone has a different version of what that something was. Maybe race. Maybe drugs. Maybe a woman. Maybe revenge. No telling really.
- Across the street we've got another place with a dozen people in it. They're dealing meth.
- On the other side of my house, the house has been "empty" for a few months. The guys who were living there had never paid any rent, other than the original deposit. They didn't speak and were rather secretive. Kind of creepy really. I wasn't sad when they were evicted. But I was sad when I found out that a variety of homeless druggies have been squatting in the place while it's been empty. It does look like a nice couple is moving in now. The mom works for the property management company that has been hired to clean up the crazy mess.
- Just past that house is our neighborhood convicted rapist who has paid his debt to society. He's a friendly fellow. He likes to give the kids ice cream and dollar bills.
- Just past him is the house that was raided about six months back by fifteen police officers with riffles and bulletproof vests. Immigration issues.
- The teenyboppers/Serrano gang members wander up and down our street, swearing at each other. We've got a little graffiti here, a pair of shoes hanging on the telephone wires there. It's charming. Adds that je ne sais quoi.
And I am stuck here. Yes, I could let the bank repossess the house. Yes, I could move to some cheaper part of the country with no job, no savings. Seems like a bad plan though. Anyhow, thanks for listening: I just needed to spew.