Sunday, August 26, 2012

Committee of the Middle of the Street: Block Party Edition

This is not a picture from our block party, just a block party, in general.
The people in this picture are not actual neighbors of ours, they do play them on TV, however.

Since it's the end of August, it's block party time here on our street and Cookie was there, sans the husband, who is bivouacked in Baltimore until the big move comes along.

 I thought it would be nice to invite the couple who are buying our house so they could meet the neighbors and get a feel for the people on the street.

 Pot Smoking Phil and his current girlfriend Pole Twirling Twila (her job is just a rumor) greeted us and the evening was off to a rousing start.   Thankfully, Twila had her "flipper" partial in, so when she smiled, she smiled "purdy".

Thankfully Phil didn't offer the new owners a joint just as we walked up.

Just Call me Judy borrowed he son's propane cooker so there was all manner of tasty farm animals to eat. She even cooked a goat and served it with Durkee's Famous Sauce, a la Nathlie Dupree.

Of course half the street is either vegetarian or vegan, so the goat didn't really go over so well, but those who tried it said it tasted a lot like chicken.

Witch Wendy and her husband Clovis even drove back from Wendy's mother's bedside. It seems that Mom thinks her time is near, again. Wendy has been shuttling between Columbus and Winnipeg for the past two years where she reported that mosquitoes are the "size of elephants" and "thick as theives."

Helicopter Sandy showed up with a big ass bowl of Pink Junk* on ice.

"Won't that whipping creme go bad in this heat?" asked One Tooth Bit.

"Hold your horses," said Helicopter Sandy. "It's on ice and its made with Cool Whip - Cool Whip never goes bad. Try some."

Pink fluff is nothing more than a tub of cool whip, a can of cherry pie filling, marshmallows and a couple teaspoons of black cherry Jell-O. But to One Tooth Bit it was sweet and soft, just the way she likes her food.

"Hey Bit," I called out. "Save room for some goat."

Just then there was a darkening of the clouds and the smell of burning goat when we looked down the street to see Frigid and Frigda and their Aryan toddler making their way towards us.

"And here I thought it was going to be a fun night," cracked One Tooth Bit.

Just Call Me Judy said she was ready for them and had the proper permits.

Frigid and Frigida scanned the revelers like they were looking not for the guilty, but for the guiltiest among us so they could unleash their special blend of Icelandic and Cincinnati charms upon. Instead of engaging us, they opened their lawn chairs in the street and simply sat in judgement of the group.

Since this was my last official appearance, at some point after I had lost track of the people buying our house, the band stopped playing and yours truly was called to the stage. Giggling Tom, wearing a hunters orange cape, started to present me with a certificate, but forgot my name. Still he had nice generalities to say about me, even if I have spent the last 19 years ducking from him.

Eventually, the new owners reappeared and told me that Remodeler Evan - a man whose house runs a close second to the Winchester Mansion in additions that gotten his hooks into them and wanted to show them his house. Remodeler Evan does this at every function - he steals guests away to tour his home.

"The first dumbwaiter was amazing, but two dumbwaiters are audacious," Mr. New Owner remarked with his tongue in his cheek.

"Did he also try and tell you that Columbus means you have to have a urinal in each bathroom?" I asked. 

"Yeah, what's with that?" asked the wife.

"That's what happens to your brain when you do too much work in un-ventilated rooms."

The beer and wine flowed and several people, the Bob Wolf(e)'s even let their hair down, so to speak, as they joined in the singing of folk tunes.  Yes, sir - it was a real Kumbaya moment when the gayest couple around started dancing with Giggling Tom.

As the evening progressed even Frigid and Frigida began keeping tempo to the bands as they played. Just Call Me Judy said that they even tried the goat.

"I told them it was chicken," she admitted.  "One of them smiled at me.  I'm sure it was just gas."

In the end the new folks will fit in quite nicely, and I suspect they will add their bit of flourish to the neighborhood.

As we were walking back to the house, Mrs. House Buyer asked "Doesn't having us here kinda freak you out?"

 I explained that it was time to move on.

"You never really own a house. You live in it, take care of it, and if you do everything right, then pass it on to the next owner."

I told them that they needed to move in and start making it their own.

"That's what I did - you should too."

Will I miss the house?  Sure.  After 19 years lots of things like finding your way to the bathroom in the middle of the night are kinda automatic.  But you can always adapt and relearn, can't you?  If you can't, it's time for the nursing home.

I will miss our neighbors, though. Nineteen years is a long time to build up bonds of friendship. And we've done that by building more bridges than burning them behind us. Every neighborhood has a Frigid and Frigida, they could be WASP, or any other background. I'll even miss Giggling Tom, but I look forward to finding the next "personality" in our new neighborhood.

*One of the Seven Salads of Marion Ohio


  1. What a gift to your new neighborhood the two of you are going to be. I was raised to be neighborly, and it's still always a shock that so many people aren't.

  2. There are few things as wonderful as finding navigating a new neighborhood. Hopefully your new neighborhood will work for you.

  3. I agree with the comments...but was wondering if the new owners might...panic? If they have a blog, it would be great to follow their take on the annual block party. Although, betting their description would not nearly be as hysterical, Cookie.