A Salt and Battery.

Current mood: Furious. Hang on. Lemme get some socks. It’s COLD up in here.

…Okay. Now that I have on lavender fluffy socks I can really get angry.

As you know, from your Big Book of June Events, the guy next door has no water or power. He did have all those things because he had a woman living there, a woman who had a cat named Sissy, and that cat named Sissy was MY cat’s best friend. Therefore, said woman became known as Sissy’s Mom.

Sissy’s Mom was nice, and sometimes when she was running low on cat food I helped her out. I also helped her with flea meds. And to be fair, Milhous took many, many meals over there because Sissy’s Mom enjoyed watching the two cats eat together on the deck. They really were best friends. And it seemed like she was good for my neighbor and vice versa. Or, if you want to stick in my craw, visa versa. (Also, it’s YIN yang. Not ying.)

But then they broke up, Sissy’s Mom and the guy next door did. And it’s a shame, because she needed a place to live and he clearly needed help paying the goddamn water bill.

She’s gone from the neighborhood now, and Milhous runs around this house at a breakneck pace, turning to butter, with nowhere to get his energy out because he doesn’t have a young friend to run about with any longer.

Always get two kittens at a time; that’s my advice to you.

Anyway, I’ve been trying to be nice. The guy next door was regularly knocking on my door at night, which scares me every time it happens, and asks for things. Water, matches, a candle. I had to give him a really nice box of matches (one of those really big wooden boxes, that, to be fair, I got from my friends Chris and Lilly) (I asked if they had matches once and got this behemoth box when I thought they’d have a small bendy pack of matches, you know the kind I mean?) and my favorite French-vanilla lavender candle. Matches m’socks.

I eventually told him to just take water from my hose, put it in my bucket (I also gave him a bucket), no need to ask.

Yesterday I came home for EIGHT SECONDS between work and working out and the guy across the street, who I will call Mike, came bustling over. Oh, now what, I thought.

“That guy next door to you moved someone in and I saw him at your hose with a big five-gallon bucket,” he said. “I made him move along.”

Mike can be a busybody, but I’d heard people had moved in next door, and now I was a little ticked off. I said ONE guy could take my water. I don’t want to be supplying water for a family of six or what have you.

Sure enough, a large man was on my next-door neighbor’s porch. He waved at me. “Evenin’!” he enthused.

Yes. It is.

I left for my workout and came home, fed everyone, tended to the Eds, made something to eat (I act like I chopped carrots or something and didn’t throw a Lean Cuisine in the microwave) and I was finally, FINALLY, sitting down to catch up on some Poldark, which I don’t even like but now I have to know why that one guy is hallucinating his dead wife, when

KNOCK
KNOCK
KNOCK.

WOO WOO WOOO WOOO! said Edsel, and thank god for him. From behind a door, Edsel sounds way more like he’d enjoy killing you rather than getting tea and catching a musical at the community theater.

Every time someone knocks after dark, it scares me. Are people that fucking clueless that they can’t for ONE SECOND put themselves in the place of a woman living alone hearing THE DOOR at 10 p.m.? Do they just not care?

WHO IS IT, I said, trying to sound armed.

“It’s Tommy, next door.”

No it wasn’t.

“NO, IT’S NOT,” armed and dangerous June said.

“It’s his friend. Do you have any seasoning salt?”

Seasoning salt? Who are you, Wolfgang Fuckedup? Seasoning salt. Did he just mean salt, by the way?

“No,” I said, assuming he really meant seasoning salt, which I do not have because MSG. “I can’t answer the door right now anyway.”

“What about pepper,” asked Chef Boy-he-has-nerve-ardee.

“I’M GOING TO BED,” I sterned, and shut off my porch light.

“What about a charger to–“

I don’t even know what the fuck else he asked because I had to LEAVE MY LIVING ROOM, TURN OUT THE LIGHTS, so I’d look like I was really going to bed, just so I wouldn’t be harassed at 10 o’clock at night.

Goddammit. I mean, that seriously pisses me off. Does he not realize HE IS A STRANGER?? Even if he meant well, which I doubt, Mr. Fifty Reasons to Get You to Open the Door, WHO DOES THAT?

So this morning I left a note on my front door that reads, If it’s dark out and you knock, I won’t answer but I WILL call the police.

I’ve become that person.

I’m done being nice. I experimented with nice, and it turns out being nice is stupid.

And why didn’t my actual neighbor knock if he was seeking the elusive seasoning salt? Why send a stranger to my door? And what are they batching up, over there, with literally no power?

Oh, I am LIVID. I’m opening up a can of Evelyn, the grandmother I’ve turned into. Why don’t you seasoning salt a can of Evelyn’s whupass, motherfuckers?

Anyway, that’s my latest and if I turn up dead you’ll know Dr. Pepper over there is who did me in. Jesus. Great salted Jesus.

That’s all I’ve got to tell you, other than I was amused by something this morning and you probably can’t identify unless you ever had a blog or what have you.

There’s a woman whose videos I admire due to her makeup skillz, and I also follow her on Instagram. She’s always called herself Crystal, and this whole time I just assumed that was really her name. Today she has a post up and I read her comments, and someone was all, “You look as beautiful as you always have, Amanda.”

Amanda.

In a million years I’d have never guessed her to be an Amanda. I’m gonna tell you right away I can’t take another day AMANDA.

And it amused me because there’s always that asshole. There always is. It’s someone you knew in college or they taught you gym in fifth grade or whatever but they just don’t get the concept. I can’t tell you how many comments here I used to sweatily edit that said, “Karen, you are still as funny as you were at day camp in 1976″ or whatever.

Now I don’t think there’s a single one of you who doesn’t know my actual name and, in stalkier cases, ex-boyfriend’s names and where we live and what my desk at work looks like and the results of my colonoscopy. So whenever someone Karens me now I just give up.

Love,
JUNE. For real. JUNE.

73 thoughts on “A Salt and Battery.

  1. If the power is off, what were they going to use to power the charger? Anyway I got Blink cameras from QVC and it didn’t have to be wired into the doorbell. It uses batteries and so far the battery life has been good.

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  2. Hi June. It really bothers me that the new roommate next store tried to pass himself off as “Tommy.” And if they have no water, then there’s no flushing of the facilities …unless they get buckets of water for the “manual process” (I have a water pump and when the electricity goes off, this is how one flushes).
    *Awesome note* I like how you handled the situation.
    I love the camera idea. I am about to buy two wifi outdoor cameras. One will be at the front door and the other will point out a side window. Last week, a female/stranger got onto the property and wandered around knocking at the doors. I live behind an electronic gate in the country. They had to climb a fence and walk through horse pastures to get in here. My sister, my father, and I have three houses clustered together. My sister’s camera filmed the intruder. My father’s dog snored the entire time and did not hear nuthin. Hey???? These security cameras have two way audio…I could bark furiously into the phone app after the camera alerts me to an intruder while I’m at work!

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  3. Salt and battery! Nice one.
    Good for you for not opening the door. And for putting up that sign. When people are clueless, they need such a sign. (But what if he can’t read?)
    I finally had to be that person who puts a sign on their door that says, “No soliciting, No petitions, No proselytizing.” What I really wanted to write was, “Don’t shove your fucking religion down my throat, you assholes.”

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  4. Knocking after 10 definitely signifies an emergency – ‘I have to take my youngest to the hospital can you sit in the house in case my other kids wake up’ – level. This new tenant of your neighbor’s is abusing that social contract. Can you let them both know (during daylight hours) that you don’t answer the door after 8 because you are practicing your jujitsu?

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  5. I am furious on your behalf. Never mind the fact that you live alone AND the ridiculous request for seasoning salt, WHO KNOCKS ON ANYONE’S DOOR AT THAT TIME OF NIGHT? For real, I would NOT be answering (verbally or physically) the door then. Highly recommend a Ring or other doorbell with camera so you can spy on clueless intruders.

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  6. Get a Ring doorbell.You’ll always know who is at the door, and you can talk to them through it. You can also record screenshots and video if you decide to file a complaint.

    I’d also go ahead and put a padlock on the outdoor faucet. This has gone on long enough. You don’t owe this neighbor shit. Give him the number for social services and rescind all offers of help. Also might want to consider an inexpensive alarm system, like SimpliSafe, if you don’t already have one.

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  7. where I live there is a program to help people with paying utilities, find out such exists in your town and put that on your sign too.

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  8. And here I was, that person who took forever and a day to figure out that you weren’t really June and Marvin Gardens. Boy, did I feel dumb.

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  9. Nice title, Evelyn. I have not one but two cameras on my front wall just for this reason. I seldom open the door anymore, just pretend I’m not there but keep a watchful eye on the video feed on my cellphone. I’m also done being nice, people will take and arm and a leg

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  10. I also enjoyed “it’s cold up in here”. That goes on my list with my grandmother’s “I’m going to get right up in the middle of my bed and lay(sic) down.”

    Also, you really can’t get a proper mad on if your feet are cold. Much too distracting. You put first things first.

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  11. “… rather than getting tea and catching a musical at the community theater.”

    Edsel is my people.

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  12. In one of my college classes, I sat beside a girl named Denise. As we became more friendly, she told me I could call her Lisa. I asked if that was her middle name, but she said no, her middle name was Ann & Lisa was her nickname. WTF???

    Her first name was actually La Denise (but she went by Denise, unless she knew you well enough to share her nickname). I never asked if her mom knew the translation was THE Denise. THE Denise Ann Whateverherlastnamewas.

    As for the neighbor, I have no words. Except WTF???

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  13. Holy crap that would scare me. I know this isn’t everyone’s belief and I’m really not trying to start a political conversation, but this kind of thing is why I have a license to carry a handgun. My husband is deployed for a year at a time and I’m home alone with my kids. I always have my pistol on me, even in the house, because of crap like this. (Don’t worry—I’ve been shooting since I was a kid and I have taken all the classes and I practice a lot)

    The fact that he asked about multiple unconnected things bothers me. Like he was just looking for a way to get you to open the door.

    I’m glad you’re smart and not naïve. I would probably open the door and THEN realize it wasn’t a good idea!

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  14. I’m sorry to hear the neighbor situation is going sour. I really enjoyed your previous posts about him and his paintings. Maybe his new roommate is taking advantage of and strong-arming him.

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  15. Whoa. Amanda and Crystal are not even in the same color palette.

    I remember the day I learned my mom’s name was not mom. I was shocked. Positively rattled. My big brother had taken care to clue me in on all the Big Lies: Santa, Easter Bunny, Tooth Fairy, etc. But he never let on that Mom had a secret identity beyond, you know, Santa (or should I say Ms. Clause?), the Easter Bunny, the Tooth Fairy, etc.

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  16. I had a grandma named Evelyn as well and she suffered no fools. I am the same way. No answer the door after dark if I am home alone. Husband is on fishing trip and daughter away to college and this is the 1st time in years I have been home alone. Thank God for dogs.

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  17. And I was going to add that’s it’s October and you need to winterize your outdoor faucets but why on the hell should you have to change your life because these numbnuts won’t get a j.o.b.

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  18. Don’t blame you a bit for feeling raging mad. Obviously, your neighbor told his new roommate what a nice person you are and would give him whatever he asked for. Well, almost. In spite of being scared, your post was hilarious.

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  19. Next thing you know they’ll be running an extension cord from your house to there’s. How do I know? My husband’s nephew does that to his grandmother all the time. And I’m not saying he’s cooking meth but he’s cooking meth.

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    • It’s me again. Do these morons have zero self awareness or can they not knock on your other neighbors door where a man is present. I’ll stop for now but this sums up the entire tiny town I live closest to.

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  20. Your title is most amusing.
    Also, yesterday I was cleaning the summer stuff out of my closet and tossing a few items when I thought of you being without a toilet plunger because you didn’t move it because it didn’t bring you joy. I laughed out loud in my closet by myself sorry there was no one there to share the joke with.

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  21. Does the neighbor guy actually own the house or is he a renter? We used to have some UNneighborly neighbors that we THOUGHT were owners, but learned were actually long-term renters. Big difference. We and other neighbors contacted the real owner, who had no idea what was going on, and he made them move out. Because your cute neighborhood is a historical area, there might be deed restrictions that require basic utilities.
    To sum up: RUDE DUDE!

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  22. First, Your sign is Great. Capitals intended. This is a take it or leave it offer from one woman to another. I will happily contribute to a Frontpoint (which I have) or a Ring doorbell which will allow you to not only see, but talk to whomever is at your door. I have Frontpoint (so I also pay a monthly fee for internet connection to said doorbell). I have my phone set so that my doorbell rings on my phone. I can see and hear and talk to whomever is at my door. I was getting my haircut a few months ago and my doorbell rang. I could tell the guy he had the wrong house and to get off my porch. He never knew I was a mile away with a wet head, a cape around me and a hairdresser staring at me in the mirror with her mouth agape.
    First $50.00 on me. Just say the word. Think about it for a while if you want.

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    • Actually, I’ve been Googling those doorbells all morning. I have no doorbell currently. There is this cool metal box on my door that I can tell used to be one of those wind-y ones. So what I mean is, I don’t know about the wires.

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      • For mine I do need the wires in the doorbell because I wanted to put one on my backdoor and couldn’t because of that. There’s lots of great security things these days. Ask if you want to know more. Offer holds if you come to that.

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      • We have the Ring system and it is awesome. When Dave was in the hospital for a week, my dumbass neighbor had one of his epic poker parties ($500 buy-in, high stakes ILLEGAL games). At 2am I finally called our security company and they broke up the game and got them to quiet down. Someone then knocked on my door at 2:30am… as if I am gonna open the door for ANYONE at that hour. Stupid people… scared the crap out of me AND the poor dog.

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    • That’s brilliant 1madgirl! And June it totally sucks that your kindness has made you a mark. I really admire how tough you were in the face of that knock at night. I’d have cowered with the cats!

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  23. Once my ex-husband who was a drug addict (not joking, and no, I didn’t know when I married him- that is possible) let his friend borrow his car and his cell phone while the exH was getting high or shooting up or whatever the F he did, and that friend came over to ask me for money or sex. He was happy with either. That was the night I resolved to file for divorce and the next day I did. I thought the friend was a nice guy. He had always seemed nice. I did call the cops as he was at the front door at 2:00 am. So I won’t call you mean or angry or anything other than wise and covering your arse and rightfully fed up. They can stuff it. I’m glad Edsel is a good boy with big lungs. He’s good and mouthy.

    Also, my name is Amanda. Nice to meet you. I will always call you June.

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  24. No power but they cook in the dark? Uncool to knock on your door like that. Does remind me of that comdeians stand up routine when he compares getting visitors today to when he was a kid. As a kid they would take out the pound cake and announce ‘hey guys we got company!’ And today they hit the floor and do the army crawl to the door and whisper kill the lights ‘Are we expecting anyone?’ Your situation is certainly scary and not the point of that comedian’s joke but we do get more freaked out if someone comes to the door nowadays – nevermind creepy stranger who opted to move into a house with no power or water who visits after dark! Cray cray!

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  25. You give people an inch and they take a mile. I don’t like people knocking on my door in the daytime when I am not alone so I cannot imagine how livid I would be in this case. I love your note and one would think that might give them pause to future shenanigans. Then again, maybe they are just inconsiderate. I hope that it works. And really, I know that this may make me a bad person however, I have learned that being nice is a total inconvenience. I just want to be left alone. I did give $5 to the neighbor kids selling lemonade last week. When they asked what I wanted I just grunted at them like Ouiser from Steel Magnolias.

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  26. I haven’t read any of the comments, got to run to a meeting, this will be quick. Yeah, right. I agree always get two kittens. I still regret not getting Tar Baby’s brother. I wish my cat had a friend, she acts lonely, but at her age I doubt if she would tolerate another cat in the house very well.

    Take the handle off the water supply, that would be easier than having to crawl under the house to cut it off and remove the water hose. To express how serious you are about not knocking on your door after dark, laminate the sign on the front door. Do you think they can read?
    Tee

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  27. Yeah, what Koala Raspberry said, plus! Turning off the outside spigot (turn off valve is probably in the basement up in the rafter…at least ours is) is a must. Some people just can’t help take advantage of a nice person’s kindness. And, nice and kind describe you. I’m sorry this happened. And I’m sorry you had the bajeebers scared out of you, too, June. Geez…

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  28. We used to call our neighbor “Leppys”. Leaches everyone’s personal property, you slime! This was a long time ago when I was in college when none of us had very much to constantly spare.

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  29. In what world is borrowing season salt or pepper or a charger OK after dark even if you lived with 10 men and 3 midgets? Unless it’s someone you know, I mean really know, like The Poet has a salt emergency and she calls and says “I will be by in 5 minutes if that’s OK” – there really is no reason.
    You have to be that person in this case June, have no guilt. None at all.

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  30. Sadly, it sounds like the neighbor is not trying to be an jerk deliberately but just doesn’t know better. He is, after all, living in a house with no power or water. Hope this situation improves pronto!

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  31. FTLOG give a single woman living alone a freaking break. My new next door neighbor came here (I’d met him, not her) to ask about her missing kitten after dark since M
    died. I didn’t care that she was female, we spoke through the glass in the front door which was M’s idea, not mine. I do not open my door after dark to strangers.
    You have been kind and now this had gone WAY too far. You are not endless supplies of Joon. If they do not desist I would explain that you are Joon of limited resources and a need for privacy and rest after dark. Remind them that SOME PEOPLE must get up and go work for a living! I would shut off the outside water supply too before you get a whopper of a water bill. It does not pay to be nice sometimes. His loss for crossing the line. You have every right to he furious.

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  32. Now I’M furious, so thanks for starting my day off with that. Although I can use the distraction. What an asshole. “Seasoning salt.” As opposed to what? ICE MELT? Yes, I know, Mrs. Dash and all that. Still pisses me off.

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  33. They need to get the hell off of your lawn with that late night bullshit.

    I’m home alone a lot, and I would not appreciate late night knocks on the door.

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  34. People just don’t think! My ex husband and his new wife moved to a house down the street from me. He would just randomly stop by after work and give me a heart attack. I told him so many times to text or call first. Nothing scarier than a knock on the door when it’s dark out . I got one of those ring door bells after having someone knock on my door late late at night . Best 100$ I’ve spent in a long time!

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  35. I also live alone and will NOT answer the door if someone comes knocking at night. You can buy a kilo of salt here for around $1 so why does he have to borrow from you. It’s rude.
    Also, I always read your blog early in the morning here in Brisbane Australia but because it’s Friday night I’m staying up a little later, like 10:20 pm, I’m a rager aren’t I, and I have read you not long after you wrote your blog. This is sadly the highlight of my day.

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  36. A salt and battery!

    They are taking the mick now. Maybe you should ask him to come over and help you with DIY stuff or whatever neighbourly favour you can think of until HE avoids YOU.

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  37. I have no words for the new person that moved in. So freaking weird!! Hope their power is turned on soon so you will be left alone!

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