Welcome, neighbor!

I was in the front yard this afternoon talking with my next-door neighbor. My dogs were both outside in my yard or his, being dogs: laying or rolling in the grass, sniffing things. Fabi wandered down a few yards and found a patch of grass that smelled *very* good and she started rolling in that patch. No poop, no pee, just a roll in the grass. She was further away than I preferred so I called her back and she obeyed. I also noticed two sets of beady little eyes glaring at Fabi, and then at me, from the porch near where my dog had been rolling.
One set of eyes, attached to a typical Gen Y “wannabe” female, walked off the porch and stood, hands on hips, and yelled, “You need to keep your dogs leashed up! They’ve run and barked at me several times and I am frightened for my safety!”

I was dumbfounded. I am always outside with the dogs when they are in the front yard. I’ve never seen them chase or bark at anyone to the point where the person/people were scared, frightened or otherwise annoyed. “Several times” had me even more confused. But I didn’t argue the point, not much anyway. They occasionally bark at passerby as most dogs with territorial instincts are wont to do. Then they lower their heads and beg to be petted, often licking and sniffing. I’ve not seen anyone frightened by this behavior.

“Okay, sorry about that, ” I yelled back, but I wasn’t yelling in the same nasty bitch tone she used. I had to yell since she was three houses down and apparently was not going to have a mature conversation with me within ten feet. I added, “I’m sorry it had to happen ‘several times’ before you could be bothered to bring it to my attention. I’ll put them in the house right now.”

I called my dogs to follow me to home. As I was herding them to the door, the other set of beady eyes (her husband) came walking down the sidewalk. He echoed her bitchy tone, “It’s illegal for your dogs to be off-leash in the city of Denver. You don’t have the right to yell at my wife telling her she should have told you sooner.”*

I responded to him in a calm tone. “If it had really been ‘several times’ I’m sure she would have brought it to my attention before now. And I’m only yelling because she’s three yards away. Oh by the way, nice to meet you. My name is Brad.” I had not yet met either of these neighbors, so I assumed they were new to the block. They certainly were unremarkable in appearance, so they might have lived there a while. Never met them, though.

He appeared to get angry at this point. “I am doing you a courtesy by not calling the authorities right now. You have an obligation to…”

I interrupted him: “Look, do you want me to put my dogs away or not? You couldn’t just accept my apology and let me put the dogs in the house, you came down here to continue your little power-mongering argument with me. You’ve got the high ground, I was in the wrong, I was complying with your wife’s request. Continuing to talk to me in an effort to assert some little bit of righteousness is just delaying me getting my dogs under control and out of your sight. You would have thought that in the last three-and-a-half years one of my other weaselly yuppie neighbors would have let me know of the extreme danger my dogs posed to our block.”

His beady little eyes were darting back and forth, his nostrils flaring. “My wife and I are worried about the safety of our young children around your dogs. I don’t have to justify myself to you.”

I walked away. These are the type of people who are in debt up to their eyeballs so they can live the perfect little urban life: two kids, middle-management careers, european sedan and SUV, up-and-coming (aka, overly expensive) neighborhood. I won’t lie, I despise these type of people. I won’t put up with them. They’re right, they’re always right, and evidence and/or common sense will never convince them otherwise.

As a final parting shot, I said back over my shoulder, “Too bad you don’t need a license to have kids…”

I’m already waiting for the next time they whole family unit is strolling down the street. I have my comments ready and waiting:

YOU KIDS GET OFF OF MY YARD!

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