Saturday, September 6, 2008

In The Dog House

I'm not able to walk my dogs this week because I'm recovering from this asthma/cold thing, so I've been taking them to a local dog park for exercise.  This dog park is actually just an empty lot in between huge homes overlooking the Pacific in an exclusive neighborhood a few minutes from my house.  The gates to the park are always open but only residents are allowed entrance.  Dogs have special tags on their collars given by the neighborhood association.

Those of us who live on the "other side of the boulevard" frequent the park.  It's mellow, it's got a kick-ass ocean view, and we're all pretty civilized people so no harm, no foul, right?  Wrong. Lately, a man living in a huge Tuscan villa across from the park has installed a camera.  He installed it to ward off angry marauders who'd been vandalizing his house with toilet paper and eggs.  But now that the defacing has ceased, he's aimed his camera toward the park.  He must have some mighty powerful lens because how else would he know when a dog without proper collar tags has broken into the park?

Well, he knows.  Story has it that he sits by the camera all day waiting for prospective violators.  I believe it because minutes after I parked a private security company patrol car pulled up.  About five minutes later, most likely how long it took to run my license plate number, the officer called me to him.

"Excuse me, can you come over here a minute please?" he called to me from outside the gate.
"Me?"  I said.
"Yes, please."
I walked over to him quickly running through my head the white lies I'd practiced in case this scenario ever actually happened.
"Which dogs are yours?"  (Hmmn, how did he know I had more than one, I wondered?)
"The black lab and the chocolate," I replied.
"They don't have tags, M'am."
"Yes, I know.  I'm staying with someone in the neighborhood,"  I fibbed not realizing until later that having run my plates he knew exactly where I lived.
Nicely, as if he'd rather be handcuffing a burglar from someone's backyard than shooing people from a virtually empty dog park, "You're not allowed here without tags.  Didn't you see the signs?"

I felt like saying, "Yessir, I saw the signs but being from the other side of the tracks and all I never did learn how to read.  Sure are pretty, though."

Instead I said, "Okay, I'll leave."

He nodded his head, got into his patrol car and waited.  Waited for me to gather my hyper dogs, put on their leashes, give them water, gather my stuff, and return to the car.

The goody two shoes in me went home feeling shamed, as if I've been handcuffed, arrested and mug shots were taken for perpetuity.

I visit that park in the middle of the day when only a few residents are there.  The residents don't seem to mind.  We talk, our dogs play together, we all just get along.  So,what is the harm?

I've since heard this man owns a restaurant in town (where they charge $4 for a slice a pizza!) and he is hated by most of his neighbors.  Sad.

Sad for him, sad for me and the rest of us.
Don't we have more important things to worry about?  And I thought I was wasting my life away on blogging and twitter!

*Japan series to start on Monday! (If I say it,  I have to deliver it, right?  Way to fight writer's block - Go Fran!)


cpckqueen said...

that is one of the most pathetic things i have heard. i don't know which is worse, that you got caught or that a security company is actually monitoring and responding rapidly to dog violators...

Ellyn said...

Egg his house.

Oh...I didn't say that out loud did I? Sorry.

Insane Mama said...

I'm with ellyn, egg him, what a jerk. I live in the Santa Monoica, and the dogpark is the same here too!

Headless Mom said...

He needs a life. It's not like you were-oh forget it. He's not even worth the bitching, is he?

Manic Mommy said...

I too am with Ellyn. Let's get this very small man.

JCK said...

Some people LIVE for this kind of "action" going on. A sad life he has.

Can't wait to hear about Japan!

Anonymous said...

This guy seriously needs a different kind of video to occupy his time. It might improve his mood.

Karen Cupcake said...

We have that nasty neighbor now. Dividing two of our neighborhoods lays a giant field they divided into acres. This man built a house facing the other side, and ended being hated and racially messed with over there. Then he decided to move on our side to "get away"... so he built a house facing OURS and moved in. I have had a business taking gorgeous baby portraits out of my house for 13 years. BUILT my house for it. Was only the 5th person IN my neighborhood. One person turned into his drive to make a u turn and he went ballistic. And then reported my business to the city, who in turn traded our REVENUE for his driveway. He won. I had to leave. Now I have a gorgeous studio in a DIFFERENT CITY, of course, in a 1950s house with trees, ... sweet yes... but I am now in debt for over $200K because of OUR nasty neighbor, whom I still have to see EVERY day.
He has also screamed in the faces at many other neighbors. We all hate him. but are stuck.
You totally have my sympathy, and I cannot STOP wishing something like a meteor would land on his house(s) (they are back to back). Our only saving grace at ths point, is that his other house, the 400K house.. is NOT SELLING. hahahahahahahah!

Connie said...

What a sad little man.

Captain Steve said...

A security camera at a dog park? This man needs a hobby.

Twenty Four At Heart said...

A Money Town story from a different Money Town. Small people with power are so annoying. I'm surrounded by them.

Pseudonymous High School Teacher said...

Too ad I live 3,00 miles across the ocean or I'd invite you to our dog park. It's very diverse.

There's a crabby old man in our neighborhood. He used to stnad on the main street with a sign warning speeders he was taking down their liscences. He also drives around in a golf cart and writes down the addresses of association yard violators. One day a few months ago my son and his friends were skateboarding on a corner and he rolled up in his cart to give thm shit. They tossed it right backat him and told him he should offer them rides in his golf cart. And he did. Now he invites the boys to his house to swim in his pool. Turns out he's a lonely old widow with no woman to keep him in line.

the mama bird diaries said...

What a freakin' jerk. Jeez... just remember, karma is a bitch. it comes back around.

Nanny Goats In Panties said...

The first part that blew me away was the fact that the DOGS had to have proper identification. DO they have to go through a bomb-sniffing security checkpoint as well? Sheesh!

Petra said...

What a doody head!

amyz5 said...

hard to follow petra's doody head comment. i could not stop laughing.

sad for him. some people thrive on negativity. bad karma. probably curdles the cheese on his $4 pizza slices.

raino said...

Enjoying your blog! What an ass he is - the power must make him feel big. Jerk!

AMomTwoBoys said...

Heh. I take it you won't be buying $4.00 pizza from him anytime soon.

You're such a rebel. Did you give the finger in the general direction of his cameras as you left?

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