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Mar
8

it did feel like Saturday

I could have sworn Will Rogers said “Fences make good neighbors” but apparently the idea goes back a lot further than ol’ Will. Pretty much since the first fence was built and at least one of the parties being separated said to themselves “Well that works.”

Robert Frost said “Good fences make good neighbors” in his poem “Mending Wall” but he said it rather sarcastically as poets tend to do. They’re a sarcastic lot those poets and the only person I’d less want to live next to than a sardonic poet is my current neighbor.

This fact was brought home again yesterday. It was a Wednesday and there was a frightful amount of snow dumped on the region without much notice and all activities, from school to business transaction, were a no go.

Halfway through shoveling my driveway who saunters out but my neighbor, shovel in hand. I gave him the requisite wave and then turned my back to him, the international sign for ‘Leave me alone so I can shovel.’

Not ten minutes later he catches my eye and invites himself onto my property to chat. How I longed for a wall or a moat of dizzying depth or a hedge if dizzying height.

Eventually it was my turn to speak.

“It feels like a Saturday” I said.

I’m not going to reel off all the reasons I’d come to that conclusion, they should be obvious to all.

He looked at me and simply replied “It isn’t Saturday.”

I gripped the shovel and wondered how many mighty swings it would take to completely sever his head.

Has anyone in the history of mankind ever said “It feels like a Saturday” on a Saturday? Ever?! Why would anyone say that on a Saturday. The overwhelming percentages of Saturdays feel like Saturdays and those that don’t typically involve some crazy scenario like a long weekend or holiday. You might mutter to yourself that it doesn’t feel like a Saturday but it would never enter your head to say that it felt like a Saturday.

In my mind the snow around his feet was red. Soaked with the blood fountaining out of the neck that had until recently been attached to his head. His head would be lying in a nearby snow bank with its mouth moving like a fish out of water and anyone who read lips would know it was still saying “It isn’t Saturday.”

In reality I simply stared at him.

I needed to know for sure that he was as big a dick as I was imagining.

I looked skyward and said “Look at the flock of geese flying by.”

I had laid a trap for him. By correcting me and saying “gaggle, not flock” he would cement himself in the douche bag Hall of Fame.

“You mean skein.”

“No. I think they’re geese” I corrected.

“They are, but they are a skein of geese when in flight. They are only a gaggle when they are on the ground… a common misconception.”

I realize now that if I were to include my address you’d probably jump in your car right this minute with the intention of coming over and severing his head on my behalf. Even Robert Frost would be forced to concede that my neighbor is wall-worthy.

I was forced to retreat to my earlier contention that it felt like a Saturday.

I repeated it over and over like a broken toy until he left me standing alone in my driveway.

It really did feel like a Saturday.

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