Joys of the Neighborhood

April 11, 2008

Hey Neighbor Lady,

Sure, you feel it is OK and teaching your child good manners (I guess?  maybe?)  by walking over to me when I’m on my hands and knees in a ditch moving crushed rock around, part of a drainage project that must get done tonight, and asking if it would be OK to have your 4 year old ‘just watch’ while we work.

Well, no, I don’t think so, and being tired and exhausted and not knowing how to say politely, “No, I’m really not interested in entertaining your kid right now, thanks.”  I stammer, “Nah….   I don’t think so…”

And the kid bursts into tears and you turn around IN A HUFF and march away like I just slapped you or something.

So now you are blabbing to the other neighbors how ODD it is that we live in a such a place, surrounded by kids and DON’T LIKE THEM MUCH.   I’m sorry.    I actually do like your kid fine when he’s being cute, saying funny things, and not on my property, unsupervised.  

Am I being unreasonable?!   




  1. OK..this made me smile. It’s funny what happens, isn’t it, when you HONOR YOURSELF and say, “NO, thank you..” in a kind way to the demands of others?

    Keeping good boundaries is awesome..GOOD JOB

  2. GOOD JOb 😛

  3. That’s just weird.
    I would have recommended tuning the child in to HGTV or something. What the hell?
    Is this Victorian Europe? ‘Pardon me ma’am, can we watch you ‘work’? It’s just so that it’s so darn crazy to us!’

  4. Next time, go ahead and just slap her. You’re doing yard work, not painting faces and making balloon animals!

  5. Sympathy – I’d have probably said: you’re kidding me, right? And that would have really got up he nose!


  6. I totally understand, and I do not think you were unreasonable at all. For god’s sake you couldn’t do your job and worry about where the little boy was.

    She is the one that was unreasonable.

    But GIRL..I am so impressed at what you were doing!! If I had been there I would have helped you!! I drove a tractor on Drayton today helping with a project (we moved a storage building)! 🙂 You go girl!!!

  7. You already had the hole dug. Your solution was so close at hand.

    I had a neighbor watch me move a boulder across the property (it was on one side but my girlfriend wanted it on the other. I know! How odd it would work out that way). No hand tools would help, I couldn’t get a vehicle down there, so it was just me.

    I was pretty scratched up by the end. When I finish, two plus hours later (and I worked straight through), the neighbor comes over and says,

    “That looked like a lot of work.”

    If I’d only had the strength to dig a hole. . .

    Another time I was breaking up a walkway and two neighbors came over to watch. And, of course, give advice. I’m cracking rock with a sledge hammer! Hammer go up, hammer go down, rock crack. I’m pretty sure that’s how it read in the instruction manual I spent all night reading.

    That’s why I now only do work when everyone is gone. Safer for all involved.

  8. Sounds to me like she was looking to dump off her kid on somebody for a while.. Good for you for saying NO.

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