Weirdos in the Neighborhood

11 Jun

I think everyone must have had that complete weirdo in their neighborhood growing up, right? I lived in the Wollaston flatlands for the majority of my childhood, and sometimes when I see my friends from the neighborhood and we get to talking about some of the characters that lived on our block, we start getting a little freaked out. When you’re a child you don’t always see the warning signs of a weirdo. But years later, you do a double take. Like, a friend of mine who lived two houses down from me recently goes “Hey, do you remember that 50 year old guy with the mustache who lived behind you who would climb the fence into your backyard to play games with us? And your mom would always call us into the house when she saw us with him? Wasn’t that a little weird?”. Like, back in 1993 we probably just viewed this guy as Raffi’s doppelganger. But now that we are a little older, we feel a little more wary.

raffiAnyways, the street I grew up on was a side street off the beach that had a little private way across from my house. For the most part, the neighbors who lived on the private way were nice and friendly. One of them even wrote me an epic card after I got engaged. But at the end of the private way, there was a bungalow filled with broken dreams and horror. At least that’s what me and my friends thought when we were 9 years old. It could have been that the house was kind of run down and looked like a hoarder lived inside. But mostly it was because the owner of the house had a backyard filled with broken toys from the 70’s strewn all over the yard. It was like a real life Sid’s room from Toy Story. A toy graveyard. Scary shit.

siddFuckin’ baby dolls with missing eyeballs on the front porch. Clowns, maybe, I forget. Just a house of horror. The most memorable and disturbing image was the Kermit doll hanging from a tree by rusted chains. It’s not easy being green, but what kind of sick bastard hangs Kermit from a tree? I had watched enough Muppet Babies to know that Kermit was the heart and soul of Jim Hansen, so seeing him hanged in the backyard 100 yards from where I slept at night just didn’t sit well with me. So my friends and I planned Operation Free Kermit, in which we used stealth maneuvering to sneak into the yard, and free Kermit with a pocket knife I had stolen from my dad’s bureau. Mission accomplished. We then decided that we needed to free any other imprisoned toys, so we broke into the guy’s house via the unlocked basement door. Upon entering the residence, we got freaked the fuck out and ran out the door and back to the safety of my driveway to have Freeze Pops and reflect on our recent B&E.

I tell this story because even though I never felt traumatized, I found myself in Tedeschi’s a couple weeks ago purchasing a sugar free Red Bull. While I was waiting in line, something green caught my eye. It was a Kermit. I had this indescribable urge to purchase this innocent green muppet and bring him home. So I did. And Ryan was like “What the fuck? Why?”. But can I really put into words what I had seen back in 1996? kermYou know what though? Maybe we misjudged the homeowner of the Muppet Baby graveyard. Maybe he was just a lonely hoarder who needed a friend. Or maybe he was really just a misunderstood James Earl Jones, like Mr. Myrtle. God, childhood could be so confusing.




One Response to “Weirdos in the Neighborhood”

  1. Brett June 11, 2013 at 11:55 pm #

    Neighborhood weirdos and creeps were an essential part of the growing up experience in Quincy. I definitely remember a few in South Quincy.

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