I should point out that the person involved in the crash and burn is (was) my neighbor. The reason I enjoyed watching is because he is an ass of the highest magnitude. I also enjoyed watching because it involved a small army of police personnel and ended with the neighbor in handcuffs. Now that’s solid, live entertainment in anyone’s book.
The gratification of watching the crash and burn also came from watching the neighbor go from bold, to brazen, and right on into boneheaded. I’ll admit that much of what I share is conjecture, but it is conjecture based on multiple observations. The specifics of the observations are simple facts.
The neighbor started off as many neighbors often do…he was an ass.
What made him an ass, of course, were his actions, behavior, and basic regard for his fellow neighbors. Through some fluke in property lines and municipal boundaries, this neighbor’s house and property were located outside of city limits, even though most of the adjoining properties were within city limits. This may not seem like a big deal, but it allowed him to engage in activities that wouldn’t be allowed within city limits: shooting firearms into an embankment in his back yard while houses stood just beyond the embankment, playing music beyond loud until way past most normal people’s bedtimes, building a motorized monstrosity that was one third monster truck, one third dune buggy, and one third pure noise. He was also able to have a number of people in residence for varied periods of time.
Which is part of what started the rumors.
When you see a house whose owner doesn’t appear to have any visible income and seems far too young to retire, you begin to wonder how the mortgage payments are being made.
When you see a house where people, most of them quite younger than the owner, come and go at all hours of the day and night, you begin to wonder when a drive-in window is going to be installed.
When you see someone (again, with no visible means of income) buying expensive toys including large trucks, huge trailers, the motorized monstrosity, six speedboats, and a variety of other spendy items, you begin to wonder where the money comes from.
Yes, I’m hinting that the neighbor was probably involved in the production, distribution, and (after talking to him a couple of times) consumption of illegal substances.
I’ll admit that he started off bold. He wanted to build a huge shop building, but needed the neighborhood’s approval to proceed. Of course, he’d pissed off just about every neighbor, so that didn’t work. Then he found a loophole in the system that said he could build onto his house. It didn’t matter the structure, just so long as it was attached to his home. So, a month or so later, there was a huge shop building blocking the neighborhood, but thinly attached to his house via a small covered walkway.
Score one for probable drug dealer.
Two primary events illustrated his move from brazenness into bone-headedness. The first was his “camera shield.” Near our house –and nearer to his— there is a water pumping station. We live at the bottom of a hill, so as you can probably guess, the station pumps water up to the houses living further up the hill. The water company, in a stroke of common sense, has a camera that sits on a pole and keeps a watch on the pumping station so that no miscreants can sabotage it without being recorded.
The sheet metal almost screamed, “Don’t look over hear at any possibly illegal activities!”
The second event was his purchase of a motorhome. The motorhome wasn’t a nice, new, gadget infested behemoth that you would expect. It was older, beat up, and needed a new paint job –eight or nine years ago.
We jokingly referred to it as his “Walter White” mobile – the character on “Breaking Bad” who used an old motorhome as a mobile meth manufacturing lab. The joke quit being funny after our neighbor gutted the motorhome, but didn’t replace anything he’d removed from the inside.
I returned home from work the other night and was mildly irritated that a sheriff’s Suburban was parked at the corner, forcing me to swing wide to get around it. Then I looked past it to the neighbor’s place.
The number of police vehicles was, to me, astounding. There were two sheriff’s cars, two sheriff’s Suburbans, four or five unmarked police cars, and two S.W.A.T vans. As I pulled into my driveway I watched eight military-looking men in full camouflage and brandishing weapons march from the house, followed by two police officers.
My neighbor was pushed over the hood of one of his many cars, shirtless and handcuffed.
I watched in awe for a few minutes and then laughed.
I wanted to go ask the cops what they’d nailed the guy on, but then realized it didn’t matter. They should have been able to charge him for being such an extreme moron.
I wanted to go over to the cops and offer a high-five, but thought that might not be appropriate.
The cops spent the rest of the evening looking for evidence in and around the house.
And here’s the best part: at that point the house became a kind of flytrap. The cops all left, except for a couple who stayed in the house. I watched the next day as at least two cars pulled up to the house, only to have the drivers arrested and hauled away. The next two days I watched a number of cars drive slowly by the house, do a U-turn and drive away.
It was a thing of beauty.
I’m a great admirer of the bold. I can begrudgingly give a tip of the hat to the brazen. But when the person’s character moves into the bonehead zone, I don’t have much patience, let along respect.
He went down. I’m guessing he went down hard. And I’m guessing that as his upper body lay across the hot hood of the car and the handcuffs held his wrists behind him, he probably heard me laughing from across the street.