I need to live in the country. Or solitary confinement.

Show of hands. How many of you live out in the middle of nowhere and your nearest neighbor is 3 hours by covered wagon (if all the axles are working) or at least 17 hours on foot if the wagon is down for repair? You need to think about these things. What if a snake bites you in the ankle and you need to use your neighbor’s phone to call the veterinarian because he’s the closest thing they got to a real doc up in your ‘hood?

Don’t ruin this question by asking why you couldn’t just use your very own cell phone, the one that siphons at least 58% of your monthly income since you can’t live without any of the “essential” features, add-ons, and that custom Swarovski crystal case you had made in seven different colors because you just never know when you might be in the mood for a little chartreuse. I get it. I’m not judging here. I’m just keeping it real.

I’m getting off track.

That was my long-winded way of asking if you have neighbors. And if you like your neighbors. Maybe you don’t know your neighbors. That’s okay too.

I’m afraid to bump into my neighbor, Sheila. My low self-esteem can’t handle it. We moved in within a month of each other. Actually, we were both vying for the home I live in now. I won. I did a little jig, bought some paint, and went to town. It was only a short-lived victory because Sheila ended up moving in next door. So really, I lost more than I won.

This Jesus, he really knows how to slide in those life lessons, doesn’t he?

I’ve invited Sheila over a few times.

First visit: Well, you certainly have a talent for using beige in so many different ways. It’s….admirable. 

Second visit: Did you cook this yourself? It looks like something I saw in the prepared deli case at the grocery store.

Third visit: I stopped by her place on this occasion. Sheila had just given birth to the world’s most accomplished and self-actualized baby, and she really thought it might enrich my life to be in his presence for a few minutes. I was there to witness his jagged little fingernails piercing his delicate eyeballs and screaming at the top of his lungs. What saddens me most is that he was probably doing his best to convey hope and inspiration in an obscure language, and I missed it. Fuck, why do I always miss the good stuff?

It was hard shopping for this little wonder. I finally settled on a “Party in my Crib” onsie with a handsome sweater. She rifled through the box, then tossed it aside. No “thank you.” No polite giggle.

We haven’t seen each other since. I’d like to try one more time. It’ll just make me feel better when I egg her house for Halloween next week.

Neighbors? You got ’em? You like ’em? You hate ’em?
image via blueq.com


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