Thursday, June 17, 2010

Thoughts on Recent Discussions

First of all, I'd like to thank Val at Fantastyk Voyage for her comment about painting wood with motor oil to stop the horses from chewing. In my post, Horses Do Feel Guilt, I wrote about Lostine destroying the front of the barn with her obsessive chewing. Motor oil works like a charm. It turned out that even when I left her door open to come and go as she pleases, she still chewed the wood because it had that yummy wood smell. However, once I painted it with motor oil, the destruction stopped.

I've filled out all the paperwork to file complaints against my three most offensive neighbors who are all running construction businesses of one kind or another out of their garages. However, I'm having second thoughts about actually turning it in. Our county laws state that no noise from a home business shall be heard beyond the property line and there should not be any increased traffic to and from their work site. All of these neighbors are breaking those rules. They drag their power tools out of their garages onto their driveways, so that they can enjoy the sunshine, but they end up forcing everyone within a half-mile radius to listen to their noise pollution in the process.

The noise and traffic are a problem, but what's going to happen when they get shut down? Are they going to start drinking heavily and shooting off guns? I mean, right now that kid that my next door neighbor is babysitting is driving me crazy, but at least he's keeping that woman busy and out of my hair. She doesn't spy and eavesdrop on me half as much as she used to, because the kid wears her down and she stays indoors. What is the old guy going to do if he can't build stuff? Is he going to sit on his front porch or stand at the fence and stare at me all day, because he's got nothing to do?

It's kind of like the time I asked them to slow down and stop kicking up dust and rocks every time they drive behind my barn. Back then when they were speeding, they didn't know I existed. However, now they creep past my barn very slowly and get a good long look at me in my yard to check my expression to see if they are going slow enough. Which is worse? Every solution brings new problems. It's not as black and white as noise vs. quiet.

One time when my brother was a rebellious teenager, our parents grounded him and told him he couldn't drive the car anywhere. They thought they could keep him out of trouble that way. However, he retaliated by grabbing the keys to the car, locking himself in the car, and then he proceeded to sit in the car in the driveway revving the engine underneath my bedroom window all night long. Things can always get worse. People are a jumble of emotions and reactions. No matter how angry I get about all the noise and traffic, someone else can always get angrier, and I'm sure I will end up suffering the consequences.

19 comments:

Breathe said...

Revenge is so darn complicated.

Boy, that was some creative brother. Is he a race car driver now?

fernvalley01 said...

Interesting insights , I guess you will have ot choose your battles wisely

Reddunappy said...

yeah but there are zoning laws for a reason, and your reasons are it!
Are the complaints annonymous? Or can they find out who sent them. Get one of the neighbors you get along with to do a complaint to. Who knows maybe your complaint will make them move!

Katharine Swan said...

NM, I still think you ought to turn in the paperwork. The fact that the woman you talked to was so shocked was evidence that what you are putting up with is way over the top. If they get worse, there will be a law for that, too. Most likely though I don't think they'll be shut down -- they'll be given a warning to bring their business into compliance. You don't live in an industrial park, and it's about time they were reminded of that.

Laughing Orca Ranch said...

But maybe...just maybe, it won't get worse. It could get better.

If those neighbors get complaints filed against them and are told it's illegal to do what they are doing, just maybe, they will move.

Sometimes, you just can't worry about, 'what if'.

~Lisa

Anonymous said...

I wouldn't think that because someone gets "shut-down", they would just out of the blue start drinking and shooting off guns...Would they?! It seems a bit excessive to worry consistently about the what if's! Do what you need to do to live your life in peace as it seems it's not right now!

Fantastyk Voyager said...

Oh, and good luck with your bad neighbors too.

Fantastyk Voyager said...

NM- I'm glad it worked for you. It's not environmentally friendly but it does dispose of used motor oil that you may have laying around. Shhhhh! And it works to preserve the wood as well as stop them from chewing. In the old days, I used creosote and used to spill it on me because it was so runny and splashed when you painted it. I still have scars on my arms from the burns I'd get when exposed to the sun before I washed my arms off.

baystatebrumby said...

Good neighbors are essential. We have one neighbor who likes to play his electric guitar loudly night. And he sucks so bad at it. Usually we just laugh at how incredibly bad it is, how it is unfathomable a person can be so terrible and still keep plucking away, but every once in a while, I just want him to shut up!

Jen said...

The Nosey Neighbor is an institution (and I'm pretty sure there's a law on the books somewhere that mandates one for every single neighborhood in the 48 contiguous :o) I would, however, exercise extreme caution prior to lodging official complaints against anyone in close proximity; particularly if they are not really breaking any laws as you could open up a serious can of worms. Who's to say they couldn't band together and sue you for harassment or file a complaint that your horses are a public nuisance or something else equally ridiculous that will seriously complicate your life (not to mention give you a headache of major proportions). People sue at the drop of a hat anymore, not necessarily for a legitimate reason - and don't get me started...
Sure hope it all works out for you!

Anonymous said...

I think you should NOT file a complaint. It WILL come back on you. When your neighbors drive by smile and wave. Quit being a control freak. Kill them with kindness.

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Anonymous - I don't appreciate being called a control freak. Who the hell are you? One of my neighbors?

Katharine Swan said...

NM, that was my thought too when I read that comment. They must be, because nothing on your blog would imply that you are a control freak.

lytha said...

does it have to be used motor oil? would fresh work? cuz i don't have any used...

also, i was the sucker who paid 22,50 euros for a bottle of "stop chew" which is just cayenne pepper spiced veggie oil. and the horse thanks me and continues to rip up our pretty fence, now that it has texmex flavor. that's a lot of money for the secret yummy sauce: (

i guess i could change the oil in my lawn mower. hm. you know, no one changes their own automobile oil here, and cars only get changes every year or more - so odd! i think it's cuz everyone uses synthetic, *shrug*

i really think you'd love it here cuz it's incredibly quiet - and the noise laws are so strictly enforced. OTOH sundays are enforced quiet days and they are kind of strict. i tried to mow my lawn on a holiday last month and my man said "please don't - the neighbors!" and i said "it's not Sunday....and it's not even a religious holiday!" i felt justified when i heard a tractor mowing hay in the distance: ) if he can mow hay, i can mow lawn!

i remember living in seattle, writing anonymous letters to my neighbor that her dog barked from 11-2 every night, and i could not sleep. she ignored every letter until i had animal control back me up with a warning (fee). it turned out she was my flight attendant one trip and i said "so what's up with your dog!?" and after that she shut the doggie door whenever she flew on trips. and she had a huge bouquet of flowers delivered as apology. nice!

i sincerely hope you get your quiet someday.

~lytha

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Lytha - I actually used new motor oil out of the container, so it works. It just might be expensive, but not as expensive as having to replace the front of my barn. We've tried spraying the wood with WD-40, re-staining it, repainting it, all the horse products that supposedly stop them from chewing, and most only work for a few hours or days. So far this motor oil has had the longest results.

Yeah, dogs often bark endlessly when their owners aren't home, so there's not much the owners can do other than keep the dogs indoors and clean up after them when they get home. How sweet of the lady to send you flowers as an apology. We've always been good about fixing problems that our neighbors complain about, such as dips in our road, over-shooting sprinklers, apples falling into their yard, etc. I don't know why others can't do the same for me, especially when my complaints aren't anywhere near being petty. Is it so hard to be civilized?

Stephanie said...

NM.... wouldn't it be nice if at least one of those pesky neighbors of yours even gave half a thought about what they are doing! You are in a bit of a predicament, I understand your hesitation to file the complaints as well as your desire to have a nice quiet neighborhood.

You are the only one who is going to be able to make that decision! Hopefully you will be able to clearly sort it out!

Glad the motor oil worked.. I would never have thought about that one.

KatyM said...

Just a thought... Maybe I just missed it (I'm a new reader of your blog), but are they actually running businesses or just pursuing a hobby?

I ask that because my father was a carpenter and a cabinet maker, and his machinery was loud and obnoxious. However he made things because he enjoyed it, not as a business. He had a completely separate career as a college professor, but he enjoyed building furniture.

So, I'm wondering if turning them in for running a business out of their homes may only serve to increase the hostilities if in fact they are just pursuing an annoying hobby?

Nuzzling Muzzles said...

Hi KatyM - Trust me. I've done my research. You can look up their addresses on the Internet and get a return of their business names. One guy grinds tile and other types of counter tops, another guy has a business grinding mechanical parts, and another guy is just an all around Renaissance Man who claims to do everything, but all of his licenses have expired. Still he's practicing and has a business sign on his truck.

My father did woodwork as a hobby out of his garage too, but he always closed the garage door when it got really loud. He also made sure that the neighbors weren't bothered by what amount they could hear, and he only did it between 4:00 PM and 5:00 PM each evening, so he wasn't waking people up at indecent hours.

KatyM said...

NM, Well sounds like you would be in the right, then.

My dad was lucky to have no neighbors within miles of the house. We had 155 acres, and the house was close to the center of the property. The next neighbor was pretty far down the main (dirt) road. So it was just us kids that suffered, LOL.