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The Next Door Neighbor

Ray . , Dec 06, 2012; 11:16 a.m.

My next door neighbor, seemingly a nice guy, although he doesn't say much, collects old European sports cars. He's got two in his garage, and this is the third one. The view is from my driveway looking towards his house. I bought my house early part of this year and this blue tarp thing was there then. If I had to do it over again, I'd still buy the house in a heartbeat. I love my house, and the neighborhood, for that matter, but this view is getting under my skin more and more as time goes by. I pretty much forget about it once I'm inside or in my backyard, but it still rankles me. I'm not going to say anything to the guy- I might need him one day when I'm laying in the street unable to get up because of whatever. His wife one time, unsolicited, offered the information that she bought him a nice car cover to replace the blue tarp, but he told her he's going to use it when he gets the car fixed up. I'm not holding my breath.

I'll probably sell my house in 5 or 6 years when I retire, and move out of the area. What to do now? A wall? Hedge? 25 foot shrubs? What would you do???


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Rob Bernhard , Dec 06, 2012; 11:43 a.m.

When I was a kid, my grandmother's next door neighbors built, repaired, and tested dirt-track super-stock/late-model race cars in their driveway.

If all you have is a blue tarp, consider yourself lucky. ;)

Stephen Lewis , Dec 06, 2012; 11:58 a.m.

Personally, I'd chat your neighbor up and express some interest in seeing the car and finding out what it is. If it is really something special, you could document his bringing it back to life.

Lupo Lobo , Dec 06, 2012; 12:01 p.m.

+1 for Stephen - it might also inspire the neighbor to move the project along.

Frank Mueller , Dec 06, 2012; 12:03 p.m.

His wife one time, unsolicited, offered the information that she bought him a nice car cover to replace the blue tarp

I'd talk to the wife! Obviously she doesn't like the blue tarp either, so you have a powerful ally! I'd pay her some compliments regarding their house: "Your place has great curb appeal -- but the blue tarp...". If you are lucky and she gets onto his case, that tarp will be history before you know it!

Best of luck!

William Kahn , Dec 06, 2012; 12:13 p.m.

Better yet, have your wife talk to his wife. If that doesn't get some action, nothing will... ;-)

Jerry Litynski , Dec 06, 2012; 12:17 p.m.

Our neightbor has a large pig. Future in pork chops, perhaps?

Brian S. , Dec 06, 2012; 12:19 p.m.

I don't know where you live, but in my neighborhood we had an uncovered piece of junk car in a neighbors driveway that somebody complained about. I don't know why... it was a classic in my eyes. The city cited it for some sort of health-and-safety violation. The owner tarped it but later the city towed it away to an impound lot. It was never seen again. If it were me... I'd plant a 6 foot tall hedge.

Fred G. , Dec 06, 2012; 12:25 p.m.

<<<I'm not going to say anything to the guy- I might need him one day when I'm laying in the street unable to get up because of whatever.>>>

All the more reason to say something. My neighbors and I get along well. Our houses are attached and we all have driveways and yards next to each other, can hear each other and see each coming and going. There have been a few discomforts over the years, much like you'd have with a wife, children, or anyone you live with. Best thing to do is establish a relationship BEYOND the trouble spots so the trouble spots can be taken care of relatively easily. At some point, when there's a level of comfort because you've talked about a lot of OTHER things, you can mention the tarp in a not-too-intense way, casually, even in a joking manner. But letting it build up into something bigger than it needs to be would be a shame. Also, the more you know and like your neighbors, the less some stuff will bother you, though it certainly still might.

Jody S , Dec 06, 2012; 12:34 p.m.

What blue tarp? I don't see a blue tarp.

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