Last year, on Black Friday (you know, the day in which frenzied consumers flood retail establishments to ensure that the effects of gratitude and thanksgiving to God are not long lived), we moved into our house. Last night, as we were sitting on overturned paint buckets and drinking Budweiser on our deck (that has several missing boards), while my son ran around in just a disposable diaper, my husband and I reflected on whether or not we are good neighbors.
We decided we are not. Instead, we are redneck neighbors, and we aren't even going to change that until at least next summer.
Through a series of frugal hacks and poor decisions, you too can be the Redneck Neighbor, and I'll teach you how! You're welcome!
Step One: Put a building in a weird location
Within our first month living in this house, we had a roommate move in. He's a great guy, who was in dire need of a place to live when he joined my husband's grad school program in January. In exchange for a few hundred bucks a month and a warning that we were in a home renovation, we had a tenant, so we had to rush to get some storage space (instead of his bedroom).
To quickly solve the problem of too much stuff and not enough house, we built a shed in the flattest part of our yard. Which happens to be against a retaining wall. This requires that the shed face the house rather than the street. Putting the shed on our side yard, facing the street would be logical; on the other hand it would have required digging for days in the frozen ground. So, we just put the shed in the easiest place possible, and the ugliest. I'm thinking that putting a vintage Sinclair's Sign might help us solve the problem of the eyesore.
Step Two: Keep defunct vehicles in your driveway
After putting up the shed, the front tire of our one and only vehicle went flat. Since I work from home, and my husband bikes to school, we just let it sit for several weeks, without moving. To elucidate the situation, we had a dilapidated vehicle in our yard for nearly a month before we decided to buy a new tire and fix the thing.
*Please note- defunct vehicles are also a part of life in the hood, and therefore do not automatically make you a Redneck. I know because there are about 19 defunct vehicles on my block.
Step Three: Keep yard work to a minimum
I finally bought a battery powered weed eater, but I only managed to clean up 1/4 of the yard because the battery life appears to drain after dealing with... well 1/4 of our Redneck yard. At least that 1/4 of the yard looks marginally better than the vacant lot next door.
Step Four: Keep stop gap measures in place for months
Step Five: Trash everywhere, all the time.
- Watch My Name is Earl instead of doing yard work.
- Regularly allow your child to run around in just a diaper.
- Host large groups that spill into the yard on a regular basis. Bonus points for slip and slides and mud pits.
- NASCAR and beer guts help too.