Those Neighbor Boys Return

And by “return” I mean I just have more stories, but “return” makes a better title.

I read a study once that said that, statistically, single men are more likely to engage in criminal, risky, and otherwise silly activities than their married counterparts are. It proceeded to explain that when men get together and come up with silly ideas, they all think it’s a great idea. But when a married man comes home and tells his wife about it, she tells him how ridiculous it is, and since he cares more about what his wife thinks than his buddies, he is less likely to engage in said silly activities. Single men are less likely to have somebody they care about telling them that they’re being silly, making them more likely to engage in those activities.

The more I live next to an apartment of single guys, the more credence I give to this idea.

Apparently the slackline proved insufficiently interesting as the summer has progressed, and the neighbor boys decided to make some additions to the front yard. First, they dragged two couches onto the front lawn, one of which has sat there for at least a month through rain, scorching sun, and a deluge of pollen. I really hope that those boys own those couches and that they weren’t provided with a furnished apartment, but I guess that’s between them and the landlord.

Next, they made a drum from a washing machine appear on the front lawn. And what did they do with this washing machine drum? They started a fire in it. They probably roasted marshmallows in it or something. Now I know that it’s legal to start a fire on private property as long as it’s properly contained, but I’m unsure of whether it’s ok to do it on the front lawn. And since this was just a washing machine drum, instead of a firepit, what remains of their fire–weeks later–is a neat circle of scorched grass.

The day after this fire, I smelled gasoline fumes in my house. It started giving me a headache, but I could not for the life of me figure out where it was coming from. Kyle finally went out to look, and he found an open container of gasoline on the neighbor boy’s lawn. Now, it’s the middle of summer in a desert with a lot of dry plants around. This is, shall we say, not the wisest place to store gasoline. The wind was blowing north, and our swamp cooler was pulling the fumes into our house. I was pretty mad about it, but Kyle convinced me to politely knock on their door and ask that it be removed. I did that, and it seems as though the offending boy who had placed the container was not home, but one of his very polite roommates told me that he would take care of it. We were going to a picnic, and when we returned the container had been removed, and we have had no further problems with dangerous materials being stored in open containers on their front lawn.

And in a bit of sad news, the boy who was mowing my lawn has not made an appearance in the past few weeks. The upshot of this is that his ugly yellow truck has not been parked in front of our house taking up precious parking, either, so at least there’s that.