'eccentric' neighbors, anybody got one?

sighJanuary 10, 2007

We're fortunate enough to get along well with all of our neighbors, even the eccentric one in question. But this is driving me nuts.

We recently expanded our house and the addition has some large windows. Our neighbor across the street spends most of his days (and nights) sitting in his car, which he backs into his driveway. The driveway is directly across from one of these large windows in our new family room. Even if he's not shining the headlights directly into our house (which he does quite often) he can still see directly into our house. I had a respite for the last month because I had the Christmas tree in that window but now I'm seriously considering getting a huge ficus or something to put there. Either that or blackout shades.

On the plus side I don't think I have to worry about our house getting robbed with him constantly sitting vigil out there.


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Wow, that's freaky. I'd ask him if the headlights are really necessary. Then if he kept them on I'd go get some construction lights (big flood lights on a pole you can get at home depot) and set them up to shine back at him whenever he "beams" you.

I did have an annoying neighbor at my last house. We invited her over a couple times when she first moved in (single mom, 2 kids) and she cancelled on us last minute both times. The third and last time we tried she literally laughed in my face and said "are you kidding, I'm going out with my friends tonight".

Then one day she knocks on the door at 9pm and asks if black widow spiders are dangerous, because she's got one in the house and is thinking about just putting it outside instead of killing it. She's a nurse, mind you. So I tell her "yes, they're deadly". Then she asks me if I can come over and kill it. That was my turn to burst out laughing and blurt out "NO!".

Oh, she also got three of those mini motorbikes that were almost as loud as harleys and would ride around the neighborhood with her 8 and 10 year old boys without helmets. Whew, I don't miss her at all.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 1:09PM
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Nina, This sounds like a little bit more than eccentric. Do you have any idea what he is doing out there? Is he actually looking into your house - is that his objective? Do you feel threatened? This is abnormal behavior. Personally, I would consider speaking to the police about how to prevent him from doing this.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 2:33PM
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LOL, chiefneil, I actually did toy with getting some of those construction lights & letting 'em rip!

The funny thing was that his wife has stopped by a few times. Once was shortly after our kitchen was functional. I had just gotten home from work & was delighted to invite her in since I now had the space to do so. But she wouldn't leave. I think that the poor woman was just enjoying the respite. When it got to be around 7PM I said that I really needed to do something about dinner but she was welcome to join us (fully expecting her to leave) and she accepted. Now fortunately dinner was leftovers from the night before, a pretty spectacular lobster pasta that I had made for my husband's bday, so all I had to do was reheat. As we sat down to dinner the headlights came on. Our addition is such that the eating area for the kitchen is open to the family room and directly across from the window so our table was positively floodlit. I told my neighbor that it was like being on stage and I'd really appreciate if her husband could keep the headlights to a minimum. Nothing came of it.

Jerzeegirl, while it's extremely creepy I don't think that it's threatening. And actually a lot of the time when I pass by he's sound asleep. He's from the south and I honestly think that he misses the whole front porch, watching life go by experience. Prior to the car thing he would sit in a chair at the edge of the lawn, by the street (usually shirtless...helloo property values!), greeting assorted neighbors as they went past. These people have a secluded backyard that I would kill for & just put up a beautiful deck last summer but he prefers to sit in the front.

I was always kind of half amused by it until I realized that we were going to be live action improv. Even this past summer when they had major construction going on at there place he would sit facing outward as opposed to facing the workers at his place. Must have driven the guys doing the work at our place nuts!


    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 5:16PM
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Hey Chiefneil - do you live on Wisteria Lane?

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 9:41PM
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LOL, shequit! Reminds me of another neighbor everybody called "The Shirtless Guy". He was about 65 and retired, beer belly. He'd walk around outside without a shirt in all kinds of weather. I was actually out with DD for a walk one day and we were passing by a couple neighborhood teenage girls when the shirtless guy came out. One teen said to her friend "Oh my God it's the shirtless guy! That's so gross!"

Then his daughter and grandkids moved in with him, and they'd send their little 3 year old to the park across the street to play by herself all the time. I actually saw the mother there a couple times. She'd always be smoking, and would toss the cigarette butts in the kid's sandbox. Dunno why I never called CPS on them, but the little girl managed to make it to about 6 years old by the time we moved.

Then there was the big guy with the tiny little toy dog. It was a funny sight to see the big guy walking this tiny little thing. Poor little dog got eaten by a coyote, then I'd see the poor guy taking walks by himself - always made me very sad to see him by himself after that.

    Bookmark   January 10, 2007 at 10:19PM
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This would totally creep me out!

I have only one suggestion: mirrors. Big ones along your property line, installed like a fence. He'll probably tire of his own headlights in his eyes in a very short amount of time.

Or maybe two-way mirrors in your big windows. Then you'll still have your view out, but nobody can see in.

(I'm only half kidding.)

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 11:34AM
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Uxorial, I thought about the one way mirrored glass as well (also only half jokingly). I should really hush because I know full well we're bound to have neighbors that consider us the eccentric ones.

Chiefneil, we've got another neighbor who wears shorts pretty much all year 'round. I live in NY. It gets pretty cold. Yet whenever he's out jogging or walking the dog he's sporting these skimpy little Richard Simmons type gym shorts. He's a really nice guy and I do tease him about it on the rare occasions that we see him out wearing long pants. But it's a running joke at our house.
"How cold was it?"
"It was so cold out that X wore pants"

20 degrees this morning and he was in shorts and a jacket. So it's not officially "cold" yet.


    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 12:28PM
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We have had our share over the years. About 30 years ago, at our last house the next door neighbor was a cat lady with over 4 dozen cats that were all feral and were sick and underfed. Finally all us neighbors got together and called it in. No animal should suffer the way those cats did. Of course she would scream at any of us whenever we went by after that.
But you got to be careful with crazy neighboors. I just read this story and it is kind of scary. Couple confesses to killing noisy neighbors .

    Bookmark   January 11, 2007 at 8:10PM
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Even if he's not shining the headlights directly into our house (which he does quite often) he can still see directly into our house.

I know the perfect solution to this problem. Put several strips of light reflective tape across your window. It is cheap, easily installed and removed, should not block your view and will be very annoying to your neighbor!

We have a difficult elderly neighbor who has done many things to pester us.

Just one thing that he did...........

One day I noticed strangers walking around my neighbors barn and outbuildings, I figured he had his property for sale and did not give it another thought. But after a few months, the strangers started standing on my fence line and looking intently at my property, sometimes for 10 minutes or more. The strangers made my dogs bark and I was rather uncomfortable with it too!

I called my neighbor to ask him what was going on and he told me that he had advertised his property for sale which is 5 acres, and included my property into the sale price so it was a total of 11 acres plus my house, my barns, etc. I was speechless...I mean what do you say to an old person that does something like try and sell your property without your knowledge?

I know that some reading this will chuckle, but we were not laughing.


    Bookmark   January 13, 2007 at 1:16PM
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Ok, in our last neighborhood we had a guy who used to handwater his lawn with a hose........

wearing nothing but a towel around his waist. And, that was not something that was at all pretty.

At least we only saw him driving by - he was down the street and around the bend from us.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2007 at 1:25PM
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When DD2 played competitive soccer, we'd drive to a practice field 3 times a week. Same time, same route, every time.

Two days a week like clockwork we were treated to a skinny thirty-something guy mowing the strip of easement behind his house. He wore NEON blue high-top leather shoes, knee-high athletic socks and the shortest short shorts we've ever seen--bright red. A visor. No shirt. Not pretty.

DD2 swears she is scarred for life.

    Bookmark   January 17, 2007 at 1:43PM
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We have a total freak living across the street, like the OP,he likes to shine his FLOOD light porch light, and sometimes even flick it on and off, on and off for about an hour.He also likes to watch everyone, He used to scare me, now i am just Pi**ed, he has called everyone on the block in for something dumb....most recently on Us, saying our dog barks to much.( inside dog that goes out to potty, and comes right in) He has been searched out by the next door lady- He is some kind of abuser.( Nice police unit to not warn people before he came) SO...the second i found out about his "issues" I went out and bought full length drapes for all my windows, and i park my car in back off the street. He is a renter so i cannot wait for the day he leaves, and the sun can shine in my windows again.

    Bookmark   January 18, 2007 at 11:35AM
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Wow -- that sitting in the car thing is at the very least highly unnerving. It's particularly weird that you mentioned it to his wife and nothing happened. It's kind of sad, actually. Doesn't sound like a very happy home.

Would you feel comfortable having your husband walk over there one night and just talk to the guy? Maybe he's just in his own world and doesn't realize the effect he's having.

We don't have anyone truly weird, just a guy we call "perverted Garrison Keillor."

He comes across really folksy and granola, but I've noticed he manages to work a sexual reference into just about every conversation. Blech.

    Bookmark   January 21, 2007 at 11:14PM
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