Thursday, June 18, 2009

A Cell of My Own Making

There's one time every day where I feel unsafe. It's a two block stretch on the drive home, southbound on Tamarus from Tropicana to Hacienda. Every night, there are dozens of people milling about. Some are barbecuing. Some are fixing their cars. Others are simply hanging around. So many kids. I'm always afraid one is going to dart out into my path. Does all this scare me simply because I'm so not used to seeing it anymore?

I live in a gated community.  The very style of the development screams "Leave Me Alone". If (as a visitor) you're lucky enough to gain access through the front gate, once you get to your desired home, there's another locked gate you encounter before you get to the actual front door of the house. If you're planning on moving in, forget about getting to know your neighbors. Ain't gonna happen. There are benefits, though. Example? Halloween. Very few trick-or-treaters, which means more fun size Twix bars left for your author. On the down side, ordering a pizza is much more of a hassle than it needs to be.

Still, the privacy which this house affords is one of the reasons I was attracted to it in the first place. I don't want to be bothered, and I rarely am. Still, as I drive that seemingly dangerous three blocks each night, I also think that what I'm seeing reminds me of what it was like growing up on North 95th Street in Milwaukee 30 years ago, when you knew the names of everyone on your street and an impromptu game of Whiffleball could break out at any moment. 

As I sit and sip my coffee, my dog is chewing on his bone. The TV is off. My gal just told me she arrived safely to work, and I'm so damn glad it's not 1979 

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