Cranky Thursday

The Old Crank Down the Street is sitting over there next door right now.

100_0764On my neighbor’s porch out front of the store. Right through those trees. (If I had moved to the right a little, you would have a clear view. I didn’t want him to see me taking his picture, so I opted for Tree Obscura.) I walked out of the cabin a few minutes ago and he immediately looked over to see what I was doing. Stared. Crank and Other Crank sit there all morning every day. Watching, and commenting on anyone they can see. Each chapter of this Judgement of the Neighbors goes for ten or fifteen minutes. “Did you see how she re-did that siding? What a mess. Who was the contractor? He ought to be ashamed of himself, letting her put up a color like that.” The siding in question is grey. Plain old grey. Or, “She’s not very friendly. I don’t have much to do with her, a woman like that. Won’t even say hello.”

Well, no wonder. She doesn’t like you. You talk about her and she knows it. You talk to and about all of us out both sides of your face, and we all know it.

And now I’ve learned. People ignore the Cranks. While the Miserable Old Farts Club meets, from about 8:30 to 10:30 each day, all the neighbors stop going to the store. A daily retail hiatus. Yesterday, I had to go in. Went in, said good morning, came out without a word and walked right past them over to my friend’s house down and across the road. And when I came back, I purposely stayed on the other side of the road until I got back to my house.

All the neighbors in view of the Gossip Porch have planted tall perennials so The Cranks can’t see onto their property. Sounds crazy? I planted mine this morning. In fact, my friend across the street gave me a bunch. “I need something to block that view,” I mentioned. They stare all morning.

“Oh, honey. I have just the thing. You take a pot full of those bulbs. They grow about seven feet tall.”


Filed under adirondacks

8 responses to “Cranky Thursday

  1. Ha! Every place has them. When we moved to our place, the first out-of-staters in probably 50 years to do so, people talked for a long, long time. They still talk but that’s okay. You can get away with being weird if you’re not “from here.” As for the old guys, that’s all they have to do. Don’t let them bother you. Go about your sunny way, wave and smile and do NOT let them make you unhappy or, worse, like them. This too shall pass. Focus on your good neighbors–it sounds like you have many and are blessed with good and helpful friends.

  2. Most “old cranks” squeek and groan anyhow. Just smile, say hello and move on. You got the idea!

  3. Mare (adktricollie)

    As I mentioned prior, we moved from NJ to LL several months ago. Some people are so nice and others to be desired. It is more noticeable when you are in a small town (it’s near impossible to become anonymous). My town only has approx. 800 people year round and we have to go to the post office daily to retreive our mail. We also have a congragation that meets up every morning in front of one of our little stores (the retired “I have lived here my whole life” group) or better know as (pardon my french) “The Town Gossip Wh$#es”!) The good people outweigh the bad though. Just plant them tall & high and if you want to give them something to talk about trying planting in the raw with just your crocs on!

  4. That morning trip to The Store – Awkward!

    I think The Cranks are gonna get a lesson in Passive-Aggressive Neighbor Relations. Plants are the first step.

  5. LOL – Passive/Aggressive indeed. I was just over visiting with the neighbor before dinner and the Crank came back. I walked away. Says I, as cheery as possible, “You all have a good night now. See you tomorrow!”

  6. Hmmm…We used to be surrounded by older folks who would run out and demand my full attention and LONG conversations every time i would go out in my gardens(this was before i HAD gardens and was trying to put them in!) and in this manner i would never get anything done! I started peeking out the window to make sure the coast was clear before going out and somehow they would KNOW i was out there. That’s when i realized it was no use…they must have been watching me all the time…They eventually passed away and were replaced by a much younger unfriendly couple (that’s fine by me!) As for the grumpy aspect of the old geezers, disarm them by being really NICE to them, regardless of what they throw your way. It just might work! 😉

  7. It’s too funny. It sounds like you are describing Bella Coola–right up to the old farts ’round table’ morning coffee at the local Coop Restaurant.

    At least you know you’ll feel right at home if you ever come and visit!



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