Ooops! I wrote this earlier and thought I’d posted it. My bad.
For a person who has moved 9 times in a 20 year span, you’d think I’d have my fair share of creepy neighbors to talk about, but alas, I’m coming up short. Perhaps I’m typical of those folks who you only saw coming and going, giving the polite neighbor wave as one of us drives by, and generally minding my own business. Perhaps you assumed I was too busy in baby world as I hurried out the door with a spit-up stained shirt loading a crying kid or two into a stroller and making a desperate plea with God or anyone with any karmic powers to please, please let the baby stop crying. Embarrassed that I’ve been caught talking out loud to myself again, I smile and wave while pushing and shushing the stroller along. Wary of getting too close to gossipy neighbors, I shy away from those that I view as THAT type. All of which means, I wouldn’t have a clue as to any creepies living near me.
I’m well aware of certain websites which will tell you if you’ve got a sex offender living near you, but usually the only time I pay much thought to that is when I’m trying to buy or sell a house. Yes, I have children, but I also try to avoid instilling paranoia in them. I have a hard enough time getting them off the computer/video games as it is.
The only truly creepy neighbor I can recall was my stalker. I never saw him. He preferred to leave gifts of handcuffs, rope, and duct tape at my apartment door. Sometimes the handcuffs or rope were hanging off my car’s radio antenna. The stalker also had my phone number which was in my then-fiance-now-husband’s name. Our apartment complex had a security gate, so I can only assume he lived there or in the homes just on the other side of the fence. While my life was never threatened, it was very disturbing. His M.O. was to wait a few weeks or months…long enough for me to drop my guard…then BAM! Phone call or creepy present or both. Even after Hurricane Andrew hit, my stalker still found time to harrass me once more. And that was when I told everyone I knew about it in case I randomly disappeared one day. My friends, my apartment manager, my fellow teachers at the school I taught at, and the school’s owner’s son who happened to be our security liason to the Secret Service. Yes, THE Secret Service. There were a couple of students at our school with the last name of Bush and their grandpa was the current President, so the Secret Service hung out in the teacher parking lot every day. After I told all those folks about my stalker, I never had another issue. I don’t know what happened to my stalker, but I have a funny feeling one of those dudes with the suit, sunglasses, and earpieces might have had something to do with it.