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Behind My Nose

A bitter, yet heady bouquet of outwardly focused criticism, observation and praise.

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Location: St. Louis, Missouri, United States

I'm a leftist bookseller, writer and sometimes activist. I'm not "high-energy," "outgoing," or "outdoorsy," nor do I enjoy sports (except for watching football) or other pointless activities such as kayaking, entertaining large groups of acquaintances in my home or tossing pointy objects at targets. I love to write short fiction & essays. I love laughing really hard and breathing fresh air. I'm a transman. I live with my partner, Kris, a narcoleptic bulldog, a hound dog and a cat.

Tuesday, July 21, 2009

Zen in South St. Louis, or how to refrain from violence when your idiot neighbors climb on your last nerve

Is it really necessary to lodge one's wrist permanently on the horn to make one's friend come out of a house? If they have a restraining order against said horn-honker that would prohibit honker's presence on their actual property, wouldn't that suggest that the honker rethink the whole visit? Or if honker's friend's mom (and you know they live with their mom) doesn't allow honker on the property wouldn't that give one pause? Wouldn't you, if you were in honker's position, take a long look in your baby shoe/roach clip weighted down rear view mirror and wonder where your life had taken a bad turn? Wouldn't you drive your 6 mile per gallon two-door sedan back home to your mom's basement, take the screwdriver out of the steering column and rethink your position in life?

And when you've made such a fool of yourself and made the entire neighborhood consider attacking you with baseball bats - when the police pull next to your car to tell you to shut up - wouldn't you do some serious soul searching?

I would think so, but I guess I don't have the credentials to be Honker. I get embarrassed too easily for that. After the first five minutes of fruitless honking and screams from open apartment windows from residents threatening my safety I might move on. I might even call my friend on the cell phone I probably have buried in my pocket. I would tell my friend to please be ready when I come and pick him or her up. If they weren't ready I would (gasp) move on and do something else!

No, I could not be Honker. Alas, I am Angry Neighbor with Computer and confrontation issues, which is probably why instead of knocking on our other neighbor's door to demand that they actually feed and water their dog, untie the 3 foot leash from the porch so it could move around, and provide a dog house with a roof, I merely trespassed on their property, repaired the doghouse myself, bathed the dog and threw cookies over the fence every day. When it finally chewed through the leash and ran away I didn't go looking for it. I silently cheered it on. "Run Bandit Run!" And when they attempted to acquire another puppy I didn't threaten them with bodily harm, I just complained to Kris and drank beer while scowling in their general direction. The next day the puppy was mysteriously gone. Kris let it go. This is why I love Kris. Together we are the yin and yang, the secret for Zen in South St. Louis. Sure our neighbors might do their annual delousing on their front porch, the kids down the street might leave beer cans in our front yard and scare the shit out of our pets, but we have made peace. I make fun of them and Kris plots poetic revenge. I'm sure the kids down the street weren't thinking of poetry when Kris knocked on the door with an armload of beer cans to give to their mom, but I think it skewers the problem nicely.

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