Wednesday, September 30, 2009


A new study conducted in the U.K. suggests problems with "bad neighbours" have increased by 30% over the past two years. Results of the survey of over 1,000 people indicated at at least 1 in 5 indicated they had been involved in "serious" conflicts with their neighbours. More details of the survey are available at BBC News.

The real question is are neighbours really getting worse, or are we getting less tolerant?

Tuesday, September 29, 2009


Crazy story out of Michigan I stumbled across today. Lisa Snyder is your typical suburban milf. Sorry, bad joke. The new season of Weeds started last weekend and it just happens to be my favourite show on television.... and Mary Louise-Parker is @#$%ing smokin' and I don't just mean the ganja. What I meant to say is that Lisa Snyder is your typical suburban mom. She drives the minivan to her kids soccer practice, bakes cookies, and enjoys gardening (OK, so I made all that up, but lets just say she is your typical suburban mom)

Like most folks today some of her neighbours don't have the luxury of having a parent stay home. In the current economy double-income families are probably the norm instead of an exception. Since her neighbours often take turns helping her babysit on weekends (like all good neighbours do) she had been welcoming three neighbourhood kids (along with her old child) into her home every morning for about 30 minutes while waiting for the school bus to arrive. Or at least she was doing this until she got a nasty letter from some bureaucrat who only has his job because he got all C's in High School.

The warning, from the Michigan Department of Human Services informed her that she was guilty of operating an unlicensed daycare. Some investigation led to the discovery the feds were tipped off by another neighbour who complained. Seriously, unless the kids were causing trouble why don't folks mind their own business? While Lisa tries to argue her case with some government flunky she has stopped helping her neighbours, who now have to put their kids into an after-school daycare. I wonder if the neighbour who complained is a part-owner?

Monday, September 28, 2009


Saskatchewan, Canada - A man looked out the window of his home in Saskatoon, Sask. to witness a pitbull attacking his neighbours dog. Rushing to the aid of the canine he was unable to separate the animals. The pit bull had locked his jaws tight on little 'Fluffy' and it appeared things were going to end badly. So Jonathon Schacher did the only logical thing he could do. He bit the pitbull on the nose. Lucky for Mr. Schacher the dog didn't turn on him and tear him limb from limb. Instead the animal immediately released the other dog, sat down, licked his face and started wagging its tail. Then they rolled in a mud puddle together and took turns sniffing each others butt.


I was feeling very guilty about not updating for over a month, and went back and read my stupid resolution from January of this year to post twice as much in 2009 as I did in 2008. So much for that. I'm 20 posts behind at this point and will need to step it up considerably to even equal 2008.

That all being said according to the site stats on Adsense people are actually still visiting here, which makes me feel even more guilty for not posting.

I just got back from a business trip to Lafayette, Louisiana and despite the long hours had some great times. If you ever get to Lafayette I can't recommend enough checking out the Blue Moon Saloon & Guesthouse. It is a roots-rock live music venue with a B&B attached. Ultra hip and you simply can't go wrong any night there is a band playing.

In other news I may be going to Jamaica in the spring for my sister's wedding. She is a travel agent and specializes in destination weddings. If you live in Canada (or anywhere else for that matter) check her out at: or via email

She also has a Facebook Group:
Travel Masters Calgary West

So she has us planned to spend 4 days at White Sands Negril and then 3 days at Tensing Pen. Both places look amazing. Definately not your run-of-the-mill chain resorts. I am very excited about the trip, but need to find a way to lose 20lbs by then so I don't look horrible in a swimsuit. Notice I said "look horrible", which is a damn sight away from "looking good". I just need to lose a bit of beer gut.

So book a trip with my sister and tell her I sent you. I think she is running some kind of contest right now for referrals. :-)

Kate from Italy writes:

I moved to Italy two years ago to marry my long time boyfriend. We married in May of 2008, and then bought an apartment that August (because buying a house in Italy is about as easy as getting a brick to fly). In October we moved into the house, and are about to celebrate one year in our gorgeous apartment here in the 'burbs of Modena, Italy.

Everything was fine and dandy until about February of this year. The apartment next to ours was up for rent and we noticed a chubby single man move in. He didn't cause a lot of problems, he was a pretty cordial guy, until he started talking to our other neighbors. Time went on, the weather got warmer, and he began to live his social life on his balcony. Yelling and laughing and being a jackass, making other people live on their balconies to yell and laugh with/at him.

We haven't been able to afford to buy an air conditioner this year and in the hot summer months, it is impossible to keep the windows and shutters closed. This asshole is on his balcony until 2:30 in the morning flirting with the girls in the apartment opposite his, joking with the people opposite our apartment, and he doesn't realize just how LOUD he is. His voice can be heard in Moscow without an amplifier. Not kidding. Add that to the fact that my husband and I have jobs and we wake up very early in the morning.

The last straw was this morning. I am enjoying a day off, and I took the laundry downstairs to my garage. I got it started, and made a shocking discovery. Over the course of the last 5 months, our beloved neighbor has been leaving the downstairs door open so that the girls in the apartment opposite his can get in and cone to his door at all hours of the day or night without using a key. This pissed me off because we have many valuable belongings that could be at risk. As I was coming back up the stairs this morning from starting the laundry, I noticed poop. Yes, poop. Poop on the ground floor. Poop on the stairs. Poop on his and my doormats! His libido and douchbaggery has allowed rats into our brand new apartment building. My husband keeps telling me that this is normal in Italy. Loud neighbors living out their lives on their balconies, not working, never sleeping, wearing Dolce & Gabbana and Armani that are ten sizes too small and give them muffin-tops from hell. He tells me this is the way it is and I shouldn't let it bother me. We'll just buy an air conditioner, shut all of the windows and shutters, and call it good. But if I see even ONE rat-poop on my doormat again in the future, I will personally stick it in my neighbor's fat mouth and hope he gets dysentery and dies on his toilet.

Ca1v1n Replies:

No doubt Italian culture is vastly different from other parts of the world, I would guess you moved there from somewhere in N. America? You are also not the first to complain about similar situations. I have friends in Toronto who bought a house in an Italian neighbourhood and loved it, until they realized the quaint little cafe on the corner turns into a full-fledged club on Friday nights and is especially rowdy when there is a football (soccer) match on.

You'll never get this man to stop living on his balcony, and you shouldn't even try. Your husband is right about that being the culture. I suggest you embrace it. Catch a nap in the early evening or upon returning from work. Get in the habit of eating dinner late and spending time on your balcony as well. Alternately you could get in the habit of blasting gangsta rap from your balcony at 6am.

I would focus on the more direct concern of leaving the door open. I suspect that if you approach the man (over a bottle of nice wine) and express your concerns about the security of your apartment that he will be more then understanding. Good luck!