Sunday, August 21, 2005


I'm really, really, really cranky these days. Even crankier than usual, I'm ashamed to admit. You would be, too, if your sleep was interrupted over and over again by hooligans and their shenanigans. And it's only going to get worse, if years past are at all indicative of what lies in wait for us downtown types--those of us who actually live in downtown SLO.

I love my flat, I really do. There aren't a lot of places I would rather live nowadays and there certainly aren't any affordable alternatives at this point in my life. So I'm a town person. Used to be a suburb person. Maybe will be someday in the future. For now the convenience of the location and the ambience of my space are wonderful.

But with the return to the school year, heralded last week by Cuesta's first day of fall semester classes, comes the Great Stampede of The Stupids. And I do mean Stupids, capital S. The Stupids are those inconsiderate young alcohol imbibers who fill up at a downtown bar (or two or three) and then carouse their way back to their cars parked away from the bars so the local gendarmes don't bust them for drinking and driving. Enroute, they holler, curse, tussle, smack street signs, scream, and relieve their bladders in the damnedest places.

They are occasionally repentant when accosted, more often non-repentant and quite often belligerent. They sit on the street under my bedroom window, slurring loudly into their cell phones, demanding someone pick them up but, "Dude! I don't know where I am so can't you just find me?"

I've been privy to the good, the bad, and the ugly in relationship bendings and endings. I've confronted these people so many times that I no longer bother to change out of my flannel pajamas, simply donning my obnoxious fuzzy blue slippers and taking my angry bedheaded self right smack into their presences. Since I'm obviously a--pardon me while I gag--senior, the responses to me-as-flannel-shrouded-apparition are mostly positive. By that I mean the offenders are generally horrified and move on.

Some time ago I purchased a digital sound machine that produces the sounds of nature like surf, rain, lakeshore, bubbling brook, etc. It's a form of what some folks call "white noise" and it masks unpleasant sounds. Like the Stupids barfing into the bushes or yelling at no one in particualar that they can't seem to unlock their car doors. Only problem is I've needed to turn up the volume quite a bit since I bought the machine. And that's even with a diminishing in my hearing, for goodness' sake!

There was this brief shining moment of hope when I read of the temporary closings of several bars downtown due to retrofittings. And then I realized how many bars remained, and the hope of some temporary moratorium on the nightly egress of The Stupids evaporated. If the Stupids want to drink downtown, they'll drink downtown, and they'll continue to wend their noisy ways back to their cars and their homes.

I just wish the local police people would hang out along Pacific and Pismo between Osos and Nipomo and watch all the buffoonery (and worse) that goes on almost every single night. We (those of us in our little complex) have called to find out about citizens' arrests and stuff like that, so we are considering our rights in matters like these.

To think that I actually appreciate the spirit of W.O.W. when it happens. After all, one of the reasons I moved to SLO was because it was a college town, and when you live in a college town, well, you live with The Stupids. Some folks would call me stupid for complaining but it's better to air my frustration this way than to become an unpleasant termagant in an otherwise nice block. At least I think it is. And I've got a great supply of really outrageous flannel pj's for the more difficult nights.

And I can always turn up the digital sound machine another notch. --"Cranky" AnnE

Sphere: Related Content
blog comments powered by Disqus