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Introducing the Neighborhood Game

This is a page from the original version of Pagan Vigil. There are some formatting differences. Originally published at

Are you ready to think about these neighbors? What would you do?

Here's a little game I call Neighborhood. I'll tell you about different situations (one per paragraph) and you think about what you would do and why you would do it. You don't have to tell anyone, but if you like, write in comments or tell me privately through email. I'll give my thoughts on each situation in a few days.

A few things to keep in mind about this first round. There aren't any kids except the ones I mention. Everyone is financially okay and doing what they want to do. There are a lot of big yards. No substance abuse problems. No messy divorces.

Ready? Let's go.

There's a new restaurant a few streets over, it seems very popular. Most of the dishes use dog meat.

At the corner is an older couple. Their grandkids usually drop by after school. The couple is retired, but they make their own wine and beer for walking around money. They also grow their own cannabis for "just because" money.

There's a lesbian couple a few doors down. Very affectionate but not in a sex-in-your-face kind of way. More like young professionals who are genuinely dedicated to each other. One's a police lieutenant and the other is a plumbing contractor with her own business. They are also avid gun enthusiasts with a (very safe) shooting range in the back yard. They're looking to adopt.

Over on the next street there is a fifty-ish polygamist with three wives and five children.

The polygamist has just asked for your twelve year old daughter's hand in marriage.

Catty-corner to yours is a house that looks a little neglected. There are four people who live there and they can only be described as nerds. Strange mechanical and electronic noises and lights come out of the house at odd times. Someone there operates a business that refurbs electronics and appliances, but you've seen them work on everything from motorcycles to garden fountains. You're not exactly sure where all that stuff comes from or where it goes. On the other hand, thanks to them, everyone on your street who wants it has free cable.

Directly across from your house is a group marriage with three women and two men, all comfortably adult. There's obviously a lot of love there, but you aren't quite sure about the sleeping arrangements.

The group marriage has made some indications that you could be welcome to join once they get to know you better.

Right next door to you is a guy who has several junker cars parked in his lawn. You haven't seen at least six of them ever moved. He also has a bunch of dogs around, you're not sure how many. The dogs may be neglected most of the time, they certainly seem to be howling and barking enough.

What neighborhood would be complete without a cat lady? You never see the cats outside the house and the house itself is always perfectly clean. The cat lady watches everyone and is only too willing to share what she has seen and what others have told her.

Down at the end of the street there's a smart looking couple. Every other Friday they give sex parties. You've never actually seen anything, but the noises don't leave a lot to the imagination. And early every Monday afterwards like clockwork the pool guy comes.

Speaking of noises, there's a family at the other end who raises livestock. The animals seem well cared for, but there is a lot of sound and sometimes the animal smell is pretty bad.

The livestock family practices Santeria. Sometimes they sacrifice for others too.

A single guy lives in the smallest house on the block. He's not home a lot, but when he is, he sheds clothes and walks around naked. He doesn't have tan lines and doesn't seem to care who might be watching. You've never actually seen the single guy in a sexual situation, but he often has lady guests who stay the night. Men guests too. Sometimes both at once.

A few times a year, the single guy paints himself all over and puts on a wide belt with a big knife on one side and a pouch on the other. Neither the belt nor the paint leave anything to the imagination. Sometimes he leaves, sometimes he just goes into his back yard.

Your ten year old son thinks that naked body paint thing is really cool. Guess what he wants to do for Halloween.

An evangelical preacher and his family live in another house on the street. The preacher spends a lot of time telling some of the others on the street that the Bible tells him that what they are doing is wrong.

The preacher's wife spends a lot of time telling you how her husband is persecuted by the others on the street.

Every Saturday night the preacher gives services in his house. He's popular and the parking clogs the street. Not to mention that the congregation is very enthusiastic with their music.

There's a wanna-be politico who lives on your street too. He's running for city council and he makes a lot of promises. Not too many have come true yet though.

One guy on the street wears military type clothes. mostly tee shirts and camouflage. You don't see his family much. You don't think he's actually in the military or any militia groups, but he brags. He's usually waving a weapon around, and has been known to take potshots at the small animals running around. The lesbian couple makes him nervous.

Then there is the nice family. They never seem to have much, but they have what they need. Generous to a fault, they would give you the clothing they are wearing if they thought you needed it. Although you might have to wait until the clothes are washed and dried first. Sometimes they are taken advantage of, but mostly everyone just wants to get along with them.

Finally there is the borrower family. Things just "happen" to end up at their place. It takes persuasion and the occasional threat to get things back.

Well, that's it for this time around. I'll tell you my thoughts in a few days.

Posted: Tue - October 21, 2008 at 07:00 AM

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