9/29/2008

You Just Never Know…


I normally don’t speak to people in my neighborhood unless they are near my home. I live on a corner lot. So, I have only one next door neighbor. We rarely, if ever, speak for reasons I won’t go into right now. There are two others that live on this street that I do know (one being a family which has a son in Iraq) and I speak to on occasion. Other than these three, I will wave to people who drive down past my house if I’m outside. Just the neighborly thing to do, you understand.

There is one man (appears to be in his late seventies or early eighties) who moved just up the street from me about a year and a half ago. He is definitely not the neighborly type. I have waved to him before. He would just turn around and walk into his house. I don’t have a problem with that. I just make it a point to look over folks like that. Some people, for reasons of their own, just prefer to not be “neighborly.” And I don’t have a problem with that at all. It’s a free country (well, for the next few months anyway) and we can live our lives as we wish as long as it doesn’t interfere with the lives of others. Two of the neighbors I do interact with have said this gentleman is a bit strange. You never see him go outside unless it’s to get the mail, leave to go to the market or whatever. Never see him out in the yard. Not ever. And we never see anyone go to his house except for one dark blue SUV that would be parked there for about 15 minutes, 3 or 4 days a week. That was it. He seemed a bit odd. But, there are a lot of odd people in this country. No law against that.

Saturday morning, as I got up to go get breakfast, there were four police cars and what appeared to be two undercover cars parked in the driveway of this elderly gentleman’s yard. I’m thinking someone has hurt him in a robbery attempt or whatever. But, at the same time, I wonder why so many police cars and no ambulance. My neighbor down the street (who lets her curiosity get the better of her many times) went walking down to the crowd huddled behind the yellow police tape. After about 30 minutes she came and told me this gentleman had been arrested. Arrested for what, I asked. For the manufacture and selling of crystal meth, she says. I was completely flabbergasted. I was shocked, but shouldn’t have been in this day and age. You know this sort of thing goes on in your city. But, you don’t think it happens in your neighborhood and especially by a man in his 70s or 80s. This is just another example of why it’s wrong to stereotype people. He didn’t fit the stereotype or profile of a drug dealer.

So, instead of enjoying his retirement years in relative tranquility, this man will spend the remainder of his few years behind bars (assuming he’s found guilty). I suspect he won’t last long locked up. But, he has no one to blame but himself.

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