The townsfolk apparently like to call my neighborhood "meth row."
Great nickname, right?
However, in my defense, it's a quaint, midwestern version of the ghetto. This Okie ghetto is nowhere NEAR the ghetto in, say, California or Arizona. No, my neighbors are poor and mostly black. There are a few ghetto-ish people but all in all most of them seem to be fairly friendly and inviting. Nice, simple, poor folks.
Plus, and I know I've said this a bunch of times before, but the people across the street own a fucking GOAT! Living in white suburban America all my life, that goat is a continuous source of amazement to me.
But we've had these really nice people next door...
... prrretty nice...
...well, fairly nice.
They were an african american family. No dad. There was a mom, two sons, and a young daughter. The mom was nice enough. Civil. She was prone to long telephone talks with her baby daddy, conversations at all hours of the night that would start out normal but would eventually escalate into massive shouting and screaming and crying matches. I felt bad for her. I also tried to stay away. Hey, your ghetto-ness is not my problem.
But despite the argu-screams, I absolutely loooooved this family.
Mostly that was on account of her kids. The oldest was about nine, a boy that seemed outgoing and smart. The youngest son was about seven. He was quiet. The daughter was outspoken and at times a troublemaker. She was five year old and, apparently not having regular access to older father figures, would always try to hold my hand or sit on my lap. They were all pretty close together in age. They were friendly and nice.
And they LOOOOOOVED my kids, especially Maxwell! Man, they would play with him and hug him and fight against each other to see who would hold him.
It was ADORABLE!
When we got word recently that they were moving we were all heartbroken.
Our sadness made it easy to agree to babysit the kids after school this past week while their mother worked.
Yesterday we were supposed to go to a birthday party. No one informed us that their mother would be working almost two hours later than usual. You'd think that would be something you'd inform someone of, right? AND THEN while I was taking care of them and playing with them and stuff, I caught one of them, the youngest boy, trying to steal Maxwell's toys. Caught him red handed. One of my son's FAVORITE TOYS, no less!
Later that day we all went outside to play. But this was all a ruse. While I played outside with them, my wife went thru their backpacks.
That would be considered cruel and possibly racist ... if we weren't fucking RIGHT!
There was a massive pile of toys, of MY TWO YEAR OLD SON's favorite goddamn toys, hidden in their goddamn backpacks!
And because we own such strange hipster crap there was absolutely no way that the toys could have actually been theirs, either. I mean, why would a five year old girl have an old McDonald's ninja turtles toy with oatmeal all over it from when Maxwell threw it in his mother's food? And a limited edition miniature Mothra chibi doll? No way.
Fucking little ghetto thief bastards!
You know what? I'm GLAD you're moving now that I know your true colors.