Friday AM. Sitting in the dark.

Why is it that early morning insomnia always hits on the weekends? Dagnabit. Woke up at 5:30 totally alert and awake, and now I can’t get back to sleep. Hobkin woke up to keep me company (actually he woke up to go tearing around the house) so I fed him an early breakfast.

What is it about homeowners associations that they’re full of busy-bodies who don’t have anything better to do than to fret about what their neighbors are doing with their own homes? The president of our HOA was very upset because her neighbor was painting his fence white. Freaking white! It’s not like he wanted to paint zebra stripes or rainbow polka dots on his fence (and, personally, I’d be amused to see that), he wanted to paint his fence white!

And they’re upset about the state of our lawn. Okay, our lawn is pretty haggard, as is the lawn of a couple other people in our subdivision, so we’re not alone, but is it really worth all that much dwelling upon? Sheesh.

These people massively need to get a life. I hate that we have an association. Matthew has been a mitigating influence on some of their truly anal and intrusive proclivities, but his term of office ends in October. I shudder to think what sort of nazi committee we’ll end up with after that.

Damn neighborhood fascists.

Bookmark the permalink.

19 Responses to Friday AM. Sitting in the dark.

  1. My sisters neighborhood is the same way. People starts complaining when they see her grass grows up to 3″ high. They start getting notes from the HOA. I know it’s a bummer. Don’t think I wanna deal with any of that stuff.

  2. britzkrieg says:

    Why is it that early morning insomnia always hits on the weekends?

    Because Morpheus also needs the occasional weekend. What??? You don’t believe in Morpheus? Well, that’s part of your problem! Seriously, I experience the same phenomenon a lot. It sucks.

    And they’re upset about the state of our lawn. Okay, our lawn is pretty haggard…

    Our front lawn is in “bad” shape, too. Actually, the weeds are growing quite nicely, but the whole thing would give your neighbors fits. Do they realize that we’ve just emerged from a four-year drought? Natural things like that can set a lawn back.

    I don’t have a homeowner’s association (as you know), but I do worry about the curb appeal of our house and how it affects property values. I guess I just have to keep planting shrubs, trees, and pampas grass until I kill all the weeds — and all that damned fescue. >:)

    The president of our HOA was very upset because her neighbor was painting his fence white.

    Sigh. Welcome to Alpharetta, Sweetie. Exactly what color would the Czar — I mean, the president — have preferred? Eggshell? I like the idea about zebra stripes. 🙂

    I hope your Friday gets better.

    • Eugie Foster says:

      Would rampaging weeds in someone else’s lawn really effect the value of the other houses in the subdivision? That boggles my mind.

      These neighborhood folks just want everything to fit into their rigid notions of what a house/lawn should be like. I like how some of the weeds look better than the tame grass stuff. Stupid neighborhood nazis. Isn’t there enough real stuff in the world to freak out about so that the state of one’s neighbor’s lawn really isn’t quibble-worthy? Argh.

      • jenwrites says:

        Hell, regular grass is generally a bad thing in most ecologies. Tear the whole lawn up and plant native wildflowers, and when they complain, hand them an environmental impact statement about grass and water usage and crap like that.

        When I first read this, I was thinking, “Huh? Haggard lawn? But it’s barely had time to grow yet.” Then I realized that not everyone had New England weather 😉

      • melonaise says:

        It’s hard to imagine how other people think sometimes. A lot of people judge by appearences. If all the yards in a neighborhood look green and well-groomed, a house shopper driving through might think, “Wow, this is a nice neighborhood,” and that general impression can help a lot in choosing where to live. A nice lawn indicates a certain level of affluence, too– you either have enough time to maintain it, or you have enough money to pay someone else to.

        Worrying about what your neighbors’ yards look like is similar to worrying about how your friends dress and act. There are people out there who would judge individuals by the company they keep.

      • britzkrieg says:

        Unfortunately, most people tend to focus on those issues and problems which directly affect — or which they think directly affect — their own lives and finances. I think it’s fair to say that in general, Alpharetta residents are particularly selfish, and inordinately concerned about appearances and money. “Me and my own” seems to be a popular motto.

        The psychology of home-buying is complex. Many people cruise the neighborhood of a house they’re considering to try to gauge what the neighbors are like and how prosperous (or not) they are. There’s a perception that prosperity implies safety. Even Jaime and I, when shopping for a new apartment way back when, checked out the cars in the parking lots.

        For some reason, “neglected” lawns are often associated with “lower-class folk.” And they aren’t the only thing. On a street adjacent to mine, neighbors recently complained that a disabled car parked on the road was lowering their property values. (!) Whether or not that’s a provable fact, it’s a powerful perception.

        Please don’t think I’m defending the busybodies at your Home Owner’s Association. They’re clearly blowing things way out of proportion. I just appreciate that there is a kind of logic behind their insanity.

        Isn’t much of your yard hidden anyway?

        • Eugie Foster says:

          Isn’t much of your yard hidden anyway?

          Yep. We’re in a corner lot of a cul-de-sac (as much as a cul-de-sac can have a corner), and our front lawn is just a tiny wedge. Sigh.

  3. dwivian says:

    He should give in, and paint the fence in the right color, but alternate stripes of flat and high-gloss….

    That way, at night, there are stripes, but in the day, it’s just a fence….

  4. amokk says:

    A lot of people have no control over anything in their life, and so take to whatever bit of control they do find, whether it’s being a nazi at work or in a home owners association.

    Personally I think some of the scariest psychopaths in books and movies are the ones that live in perfectly trimmed houses with every detail accounted for. Sure, psycho axe murderers don’t cut their grass, but you can tell they’re psycho axe murderers without needing to look at their lawn for confirmation.

    I either never want to live somewhere with an HOA, or if I do I want to be the annoying one who breaks all the rules. What are they going to do, kick you out of the neighborhood?

    • Eugie Foster says:

      I wish we didn’t have an HOA, but the house we liked was in a subdivision with one, so we decided the annoyance of a bunch of busy bodies was worth having the house of our desire. *grumble*

      And actually, an HOA can levy fines and put a lien on your house. They tend not to since it breeds bad feelings among neighbors, but they do have that power.

  5. mouseferatu says:

    Okay, ignorant question, but…

    What can the HOA actually do, other than pester you with letters? They can’t kick you out, they can’t legally fine you. Right?

    Or am I underestimating the power these organizations hold?

    • Eugie Foster says:

      An HOA has the ability to put a lien on your house so that you can’t sell it or refinance it, but usually they only do that if you don’t pay the dues, which we do pay. And, actually, they do have the ability to levy fines (which if you don’t pay those, they can do that lien thing again). I don’t think that’s going to happen as the treasurer is very “don’t want to deal with it” (thankfully). And our lawn is haggard, not scary–at least I don’t think it’s scary yet. And of course, it would breed some pretty bad mojo if they did, since Matthew is the VP of the HOA. But we’ve started looking around for lawn care services. With Matthew’s bad back, and my inability to spend time in the sun, we can’t do it ourselves (which is another reason why we’ve taken a very laissez-faire approach to the whole thing). Man, they’re expensive!

  6. soyfaerie says:

    Man….I hope we don’t get a committee….talk about suckola.

    • Eugie Foster says:

      I wish we didn’t. But when we were shopping for a new house, the one we liked was in a subdivision with one. Sigh. Necessary evil.

      • soyfaerie says:

        We’ll probably get one, too. All of the other neighborhoods around here seem to have one, and we already got a flyer from some guy down the road we don’t know. He’s wanting everyone on the street to chip in to buy speed bumps on the street cos it’s right by the high school….

        • Eugie Foster says:

          Our previous subdivision had a fit of paranoia and installed “speed calming” bumps. Stupidest thing I ever saw. The fire department hated it, as such things keep them from getting to an emergency in a speedy fashion as they bottom out their emergency vehicles. *Snort* Idiot busy bodies. It would be the height of irony if some kid died because the fire department couldn’t reach them fast enough because of their ridiculous speed humps.

          • soyfaerie says:

            My mom is all for it, though. It really doesn’t bother me. I’ve not seen neighborhood kids out in the streets and we have one curve here where you HAVE to slow to at least 10-15 mph to go around it and not crash. What you said IS true about the fire dept. I think I’ll bring that up tonight when I talk to her.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *