Six LDS Writers and A Frog

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Harry Potter, Princess Kate and the HOA

Harry Potter rules.

And I mean that in every which way imaginable. We went to see the movie on Friday night, and time didn't just fly by, it took a trip on an X-43A (a supersonic combustion ramjet that goes 6,800mph). At the credits I said, "Are you kidding me?" How could it possibly be over? How could I possibly wait until July?

I don't care what the critics said, I don't care if it was art or a true film or bloated or whatever else they blather on about. A-ma-zing. I feel totally engulfed in this world when I watch these movies (much as I do when I'm reading the books). I can even tell you that someone who's never read the last few books (my mom) had the same reaction that I did to the movie (although she was a lot more freaked out by the Nagini scenes, because she didn't know they were coming).

I want to go see it again.

Speaking of the Brits, I was actually excited to see that Prince William and Kate Middleton are engaged. I watched videos. I read articles. And I tried to figure out why I cared at all.

There's been several theories floating around - that Americans consider British royalty to be the only actual royalty and thus, the only one that matters. That we were caught up in the celebrity and glamor of Princess Diana and so because of her tragic story, want to see her sons happy. Or that it's like a real life fairy tale - a commoner, in a very Cinderella like way, is about to become an actual princess.

But for me, I think it's about the love. (Which is probably why I write romances, for what it's worth.)

If you watch their first interview together after their announcement, I love the way they look at one another, how they have their own inside jokes and make each other laugh, how supportive he is of her and how protective. I love love. I love when people get engaged and get married. (And I would bet that her becoming a princess probably plays a part in it too. What little girl didn't want to be a princess when she grew up?)

Speaking of Harry Potter (one subject ago), my parents house is on a street that very much looks like Privet Drive. Before residential zoning laws were passed here in Eagle Mountain, builders came out and put up as many houses as they could on small pieces of land. So the houses are uncomfortably close together and many of them look the same (even now I have to look for my parents' cars so that I know which house is theirs).

Because of the closeness of the houses, there is little to no room to park on the street. Driveways are so close together that a car cannot fit between them. In the spaces on the opposite side of the driveways are the mailboxes, which means no one can park there during the day.

Not only that, but the HOA here has a rule that no car can be parked on the street for more than 24 hours.

There are also many families in my ward that are multi-generational families. The economy has forced them to move in together and so you have homes that have parents and grandparents and kids.

Which means more cars, and limited space to park them.

That doesn't mean there are no spots to park on the street - they do show up here and there where there are no mailboxes. But there are these people in the neighborhood who have made it their personal mission in life to make sure that no one ever parks on the street (they leave Post-It notes on cars with the time written down and a warning that they will call the HOA if the car isn't moved by the end of the 24-hour period). Not only on the street, but in particular, in front of their house.

For some reason they seem to think that this particular piece of the street belongs to them. They don't park their own vehicles there - they just don't want anyone else to park there.

If anyone parks in front of their house, they go to that neighbor and tell them to move their car (and one time added, "Please refrain from doing that ever again.")

It can't just be the HOA rules and that they're eager to enforce them - because the rules obviously don't apply to them when they bring their camper and park in front of their house to load/unload it for five to six days at a time.

Recently they called the police since my husband had parked in front of their house. The car had been there for less than 24 hours, but they didn't like someone being in their "property" so they called the sheriff. There wasn't much the sheriff could do since no laws were actually being broken (and I'm trying to imagine what they would have even said in the first place to get him out there), but it sort of stunned me that these LDS neighbors of ours would resort to calling the police because they don't want any cars in front of their house.

I'm trying to be understanding that people have different preferences. Back in our old ward in Ohio there was a family that actually moved because someone parked in front of their house on a regular basis and it drove the dad so crazy he moved his family. It's just something that's never bothered me. One of our neighbors in Ohio was a youth minister and he regularly had meetings at his house and so cars parked in front of ours all the time. Didn't upset me at all. So I'm trying to put myself in their shoes, but it is a little bit hard and seems a silly thing to get so worked up about that you would actually call the police.

My sister is tempted to park there every day just to annoy them. I will admit that the thought had momentarily crossed my mind as well. But the angel on the other shoulder told me to not be childish and provoke them and just forget about them. We do still park there on occasion as it is necessary (like if other brothers and sisters come to visit or we need the driveway clear for something), but it's not very often.

I'm curious as to what other people's opinions would be were they in this scenario. Would you make sure to never park there again? Park there deliberately? Not change your pattern of behavior?


At 11/22/2010 12:46 AM, Blogger Janice said...

It is tempting to park in their spot just to annoy them but it's better to go out of your way to be super nice. Bake them bread, bring their trash can off the curb, that kind of stuff. This will either make them feel guilty or annoy them even more. Either way is good and you are guilt free.

At 11/22/2010 12:50 AM, Blogger Sariah S. Wilson said...

Oh, killing them with kindness.
Hadn't thought of that one. :D

At 11/22/2010 11:36 AM, Blogger Jennie said...

Two of our neighbors have Superbowl parties every year and their friends park everywhere. That's okay. One neighbor has a lot of teenage and young adult kids. No way will their vehicles all fit in their driveway or the skinny little space in front of their cul de sac house. We're the only house on our cul de sac with sufficient parking for eight or ten cars. We don't mind sharing unless all of our kids are here. We only ask that everyone get their cars of the street when it snows. That really bugs me when the snow plow skips our street because of too many cars parked on our cirlce.

At 11/22/2010 6:27 PM, Blogger Debra Erfert said...

The way your subdivision is built makes it impossible to park any other way. Your neighbors should understand this and learn to share. What are you supposed to do? Park on the roof? They should stop wasting the sheriff's time. In other words, I would park there if I needed to, but before I walked away I would take a look around my car and check on the condition of the paint--just in case. I'd check again before driving away. Yes, I'm a suspicious person, but there's a certain (low) level of mentality that calls out the law for such a superfluous thing, and that mentality might accidentally use a key a way it wasn’t originally intended.

BTY, I’m giving a Bronx cheer to your subdivision architect and all the glorious cheer he’s spread to the home owners. (I hope you know what a Bronx cheer is or my sarcasm was totally wasted.)

At 11/23/2010 4:47 AM, Anonymous New Film Trailers said...

Watch the interviews, trailers and behind the scenes of Harry Potter and The Deathly Hallows Part-1 and many more videos


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