I Blame Lily Allen 3


I finally understood what causes some people to act out in an irrational and improper way. I know that you would think that I would have learned this after 27 years of having a mother who is prone to acting out on impulse or having a father who has been diagnosed with an explosive anger problem or having relatives who, for all intents and purposes, were sociopaths when they were in their prime. Oh, no. I finally got it today in court, when the city attorney pulled me and my dad into a corridor to tell us that we had two more weeks to get our backyard mowed. My father and I kept trying to express to this man that we’d had the lawn mowed many times over the past few months, and he said that if that were true then we clearly were not getting what we were paying for. (I just love how it is an “if” when we say it or when I show images [on my camera] that were taken this morning and show a cut lawn, but the city just has to have 2 images on regular printer paper with dates scribbled on the paper in ink. That doesn’t prove the pictures were legit. I would like to see the Exif information on them.) So, after much frustration and belittling from him, I uttered two words that I should feel remorse for saying. I muttered, under my breath, “Fuck you.” I didn’t say them to the judge, but since I said them to a “court officer” and was showing him such disrespect, my outburst will be taken into account when they decide how much to fine me and if I get jail time. (This is what he told my father, after I’d walked away.)

First of all, I would like to state that the attorney got very lucky that all I said was, “Fuck you.” I had this urge to shove him into a wall or otherwise inflict physical harm on him. Muttering the “f-bomb” near him was immature and disrespectful, but it was a hell of a lot better than physically accosting him. I think if they’re going to take into account that I said 1 profane word to a court officer, then they should also take into account that my mental illness worsens under stress, which is well-documented throughout my 20 year history of seeing mental health professionals, and that I was also feeling physically unwell after experiencing two absence spells. (There were flickering fluorescent lights in the court, which I didn’t notice until I’d gone through 2 of these spells.) Of course, these things wouldn’t be taken into account because that would mean showing some level of compassion or understanding, which is clearly not a concern for this particular court officer.

Secondly, I think it is weird that the images that were used were of the backyard. The images were from an angle and showed certain things that could only be spotted from a particular spot in our yard. This means that yesterday sometime there was a person from the community development part of the city in my yard. They were trespassing to even get the photos. They claimed that this was what my neighbors see from their backyards, which is utter bullshit. I can truly call bullshit on this one because:

  1. In my lifetime, only two houses have had a good view of my backyard. One of these is the next-door neighbor’s house, which is the house where the person who mows are lawn lives. The other is on a different street. The latter homeowner hasn’t been able to see our yard for more than 10 years. though. The former, though, has only been kept from seeing the yard for 6 or 7 years.
  2. I know that it isn’t visible to either of those houses because on that side of the backyard, there are cypress trees that are about as tall as a two-story house.
  3. There is only one other family that may have, at any time in history, seen our backyard from theirs. Our neighbors directly behind us (though we have the same street in our address) cannot see our yard from their backyard because they’ve had a “popsicle fence” for at least 27 years.
  4. Even if those neighbors didn’t have the fence, we have cedar trees along that property line that are about as tall as the cypress trees. That means that they would have to be in the backyard to see the backyard.
  5. Even though we live on a corner, we have lots of trees between the part in violation and the street. These trees would make it almost impossible to see any of the bad part of the yard from the street. In fact, it is so difficult that I haven’t seen that part of the yard from the street since I was a little kid.

Okay, so basically, this whole premise is ludicrous because, in order for someone to be offended by the height of the grass, the someone would have to be standing in our yard. Also, the idea that neighbors are complaining about it is crazy. The only neighbors that we would continuously bicker with moved to Florida a while ago. (And they were such upstanding people that we used to get anonymous hate [snail] mail and threats from them…yes, you can tell who anonymous hate mail is from.) The rest of the neighbors get along with us now. And those that we don’t know wouldn’t want to complain to the city about our yard because they generally have bad yards or some other city violations that they wouldn’t want to be discovered. So, this whole convoluted idea that the neighbors are complaining is just a bit disturbing.

So, now we have two weeks to fix this problem and then I apparently will be sentenced in some way, shape, or form. It seems ridiculous that I will be the one who gets convicted of a “crime”, even though they have trespassed, lied, withheld evidence (by not specifying who complained, they are denying me the right to confront my accuser), and violated who knows what other laws and amendments that are supposed to protect people from being treated unjustly by their government. I think this whole thing sucks, and I don’t see how any of this does the city any good. Putting a person on trial because their backyard, which you can only see from the backyard, isn’t in tip-top shape is just petty. I mean, it is outright petty. If the city is so hard up for money, then maybe they should come up with a better system of punishing actual criminals. I see people who go into the court who have been cruel to animals or who have violated various laws created to keep people safe and they get no more than a slap on the wrist, but months of court dates, accusations, etc. are going on with me over overgrown grass. This whole this is just ridiculous and infuriating and causes all kinds of stress and anxiety that I really don’t enjoy going through.

Honestly, at this point, I would almost want to be in jail. Being in jail might actually give the city a good idea of what it is like to deal with me, my psychological crap, my physical crap, and my tendency to be a whiny, spoiled brat. I think that they might really appreciate my effort about the lawn if they learned what it was like to deal with an even more stressed out version of me on daily basis. A simple “fuck you” would seem almost like a compliment to them after that. If they don’t think so, then they should check out what was probably written down about me while I was in Decatur General West when I was 17. If a psych hospital found me tiresome, annoying, and rude, then I don’t think a city jail would really like having me around for any length of time.


About Janet Morris

I'm from Huntsville, Alabama. I've got as many college credits as a doctorate candidate, and the GPA of some of them, too. I have a boss by the name of Amy Pond. She's a dachshund. My parents both grew up in Alabama.


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