I'm becoming someone I never thought I would be.
No, not my mother. She's great, and I'd actually love to be her. The person I'm becoming is actually someone who can be much more disturbing. I'll make a new paragraph here so you have a chance to brace yourself. Ready? Here goes:
|Sh, I'm in disguise! Don't blow my cover.|
Image courtesy of Scott Liddell,
I know you're shocked. I was shocked at first, too. But before you start closing your curtains and locking your doors, please hear me out. I haven't reached the Gladys Kravitz level of nosiness--yet: I don't peer through my neighbors' windows or snoop through their mail or hide in their hedges so I can spy on them when they're barbecuing hamburgers. However, I have been known to stand at my window one--or thirty--times a day in order to see what everyone else is up to.
Fortunately for the people who live around me, my observations have thus far been pretty benign:
Hey, Alice is mowing her lawn! Can you believe it? She's trying to make us look bad!
Oh, would you look at that! Old Mr. Brady has invited that twenty-something Marilyn Monroe-wannabe over again. Hmm, wonder what's going on there?
When will Gordie Smith learn that walking around with his pants hanging off just isn't a good look?
Okay, in the interest of protecting the guilty, I fictionalized those examples, but I think you get my point. I like to know what's going on, so if you ever happen to be in my neighborhood and see me staring out my window or walking around with a notebook and a pen, just know that I'm doing it because I like to be aware of the things around me.
Why? I'm a writer, and we writers know that the key to writing realistic characters and situations is to pay attention to our surroundings: What are people doing? What are they saying? Why does Mrs. X garden only at night? Why does Mr. Z lock up his house when he's only walking out to the end of his driveway to get his mail? And sometimes we get lucky and we see or hear something that we know--with a touch of our own imaginations--we can turn into a good story.
So I'm the nosy neighbor--and I'm embracing that fact.
What about you? Are you a nosy neighbor? Have you ever had a neighbor who was just a little too interested in what you were doing?