As the month of October has gone on, I have noticed gradually that the homes in my neighborhood are growing more and more dilapidated, and my neighbors are becoming less respectful of our fair city. As I drive around my street and the nearby streets I see the same thing everywhere. It's as if nobody cares about how their house looks anymore, and everything is going to pot. And what irks me is that this means that it's sending my property values down, down, down!
Let me tell you some examples of what I have seen around town:
- People are leaving uneaten food, like whole squashes and pumpkins, around on their porches. Please people, if you have harvested something from your garden, I'm proud of you, but can't you store it in your basement where you are supposed to? Leaving them out front is just asking for vandalism — I see that a lot of neighborhood kids have cleverly drawn, or even cut, faces out of them.
- The spiders (or is that the squirrels?) have been spinning outrageously ugly webs on the bushes in front of many people's houses. I can't blame the owners for that, but at least they would have the common decency to clean up once in a while! A broom works wonders to whisk away cobwebs.
- This is unbelievably morbid, but I am pretty sure that the dead are being buried in people's front yards, of all places! Look, I know the economy is tight, so maybe you cannot afford a fancy funeral and cemetary, but if you grandmother passes away, at least bury her in the back yard so that her final resting place is not visible from the street!
- I've seen a few scarecrows put up here and there. Scarecrows? In the city? Unless somebody has come up with an ingenious way to scare the squirrels away, I really don't see any need for scarecrows, and it just creeps people out. Honestly!
- The windows in many houses are looking just terrible. Sometimes I see that the residents have put up a picture of some frightful creature, or maybe some words like "BEWARE" or "HAUNTED." Why in the world would anybody want to simulate a house that is haunted? There is nothing more that drives property values down than a neighborhood that has an allegedly haunted house.
Please Roger, I hope you can help us get to the bottom of this nefarious plot to ruin Alameda.
James V. Wherdonfield