So as I've talked about all. the. time. lately, I've moved.
As I've also mentioned, I love my house.
Really, who could blame me? It's a lovely house. It's in a lovely neighborhood. I've worked really hard to have this house. I've clipped more coupons than I care to recall. Stashed away cash when I wanted a new purse. Didn't go on vacation when I really needed a vacation. Worked on two (or three or four) projects at a time. I'm proud of this place and proud of the hard work that it required. I'm also really lucky and I don't forget that part either.
I love this neighborhood. The other residents of this neighborhood love this neighborhood too. Really, really, really love this neighborhood. And it shows.
Okay. It's a little Stepford-y.
Not ultra-Stepfordy or anything. A few women asked me, "So you keep up the house while your husband works?" and I shut that down with the quickness. All the houses are lovely...and look a little different from each other. I don't wear high heels to the market and I am fairly sure no one is actually a robot (although there is some serious Botox going on). I don't make elaborate, gourmet meals for my spouse. My son doesn't mow the grass wearing a tie (we're lucky if we can keep a shirt on him). A lot of kids at the local middle school are huge dicks. Our neighbors dog pooped on our yard twice over the long holiday weekend. There are problems.
There is also this really bizarre, almost unexplainable competition.
I really thought I was imagining this at first. I really enjoy my long walks around the quiet streets and I also really love looking at all the different styles of houses. I also remark to whoever happens to be with me on these walks (usually my dog) about the different things I see. Those beautiful flowers! That lovely front porch! And my favorite, that big, beautiful shiny red door!
I coveted the red door. The house with the red door had white siding and black shutters. Just like my house! I told Ginger all about it. While she didn't care, I told Jason all about it when he got home and he said I could paint our door red too. Hurray!
I haven't painted it yet. But the next week? The beautiful red door on the beautiful house? It was green.
"I liked it better red," I told Ginger.
She wagged her tail in agreement. Then she pooped in the street and I had to clean it up. So maybe she wasn't agreeing with me. I have no idea. She's a dog.
The next day, I came around the corner and looked sadly at the green door. Then at the next house, I noticed the door was...red.
I started questioning myself. Did I just imagine the house with the black shutters had the red door? Maybe it was the other house all along.
So weird. I've been lonely lately though and figured that my loneliness was making me hallucinate or some crap, so I just ignored it.
Two days later? The house next to the house with the red door had a new door. I wasn't imagining it.
Within a week, five houses in that small loop had painted or new doors. One of them was really ultra-fancy with lots of glass and carvings.
I started noticing this on all the little streets. One house would get a new flag and within a few days, other houses would have larger or more colorful or more elaborate flags. Same thing with flowers. A new mailbox. Even the wreaths on the doors.
Oddly enough, I desperately wanted a wreath on my door. Desperately. I've always had some sort of wreath on my little boring doors, but now I have this really pretty big door. It's still black right now and not red yet, but it's pretty. It has new hardware that's pretty. And while the door is still black, I decided that I was going to have to have a big, beautiful wreath for my door. With purple flowers. I love purple.
I went to the craft store, bought all my stuff to make said wreath, cursed my inability to tie a bow appropriately several times and finally (with the assistance of my mom and her mad bow-tying skillz) got my wreath on the door. Before I put it up I added the finishing touch; an initial that I bought at the craft store and painted with purple dots, courtesy of a Sharpie pen. I'm fancy.
Within a few days? I noticed the wreath on the house a few doors down had been edited and a number of feathers had been added. I laughed to my friends, joking that I had unwittingly entered a wreath competition and surely the winner would receive some fabulous prize. Like Vicodin.
So that was it.
Until Saturday. When I saw it.
The fanciest wreath on the fanciest house a few streets over. The HUGE purple and gold wreath.
She changed it.
IT HAS AN INITIAL ON IT NOW.
STUDDED WITH SOME SORT OF RHINESTONES THAT WOULD MAKE THE BIG FAT AMERICAN GYPSIES PEE THEIR PANTS WITH EXCITEMENT.
She totally jacked my idea! Which I totally jacked from Pinterest, but THAT'S NOT THE POINT!
"JASON!" I shouted.
"Babe, you are so loud," he complained, grimacing.
"BUT! BUT! THAT LADY TOOK MY IDEA! HER WREATH HAS AN INITIAL ON IT!"
"Well that's a different story!" he said. "Want me to pull over so you can yank it off her door?"
"No," I said sullenly. But I really wanted him to.
When we came home from wherever it was that we were? My wreath was laying on my porch.
The initial had fallen off.
"Ohhhhhhhhhhh," the Boy Child said, "IT'S ON NOW!"
"Boy Child, I'm sure it's a complete coincidence that my wreath is laying on the porch," I told him. "Probably the wind knocked it off."
Meanwhile? I was thinking of ways I could sneak over to her house and knock her wreath off the porch. Because it SO WAS NOT A COINCIDENCE.
"We should make a new initial," he decided. "One that has gold on it. Real gold."
"If we do that, she'll just make a new one with diamonds on it."
Then I felt all sad.
I have absolutely no idea how I went from mocking this phenomena to willingly participating in the madness.
All I know?
I MUST WIN.