06 March 2008

Welcome to East Berlin, Georgia Part 2

So, back when I first started this blog, we were in the middle of re-doing our back yard. We were cutting down trees, bringing in 30 (oh yes - 30) truckloads of dirt in order to level the yard, and installing a fence. (OK, so we didn't do all of that. The people we hired did it. Are you kidding? ME?!?! Landscaping on that scale in the middle of a Georgia drought? Whatev.) And, of course, to have work done on our property that we own, property for which we pay the friggin' mortgage, we have to have home owners' association (HOA) approval and the sign-off of the neighbors living on either side of us.

I hate covenants. And some of ours? Are just ri-friggin-diculous. You can read about my frustration here.

Because of my frustrations, I have decided for once in my life to be pro-active instead of "sit around the house and bitch, glaring at any neighbors I pass on the street"-active. I have joined the covenants re-write committee.

Oh, I am such a sucker for punishment.

All of the HOA committees met last Wednesday to get acquainted and set goals for what we wanted to accomplish and when. As we were talking about what we wanted to do, over walks some busybody from the newsletter committee.

"Now, y'all just need to write a 'Covenants for Dummies' okay? Just dumb them things down, simplify them!"

I looked at her and said, "Yeaaaaah. Right. We're going to do that but we're also going to look over the covenants and get rid of anything that is outdated or overridden by federal, state, or local laws."

Busybody: "Like what?"

Me: "Well, the fact that our covenants state you can't have a video signal-capturing antenna on top of your house, but according to FCC rules and regulations, no one can be stopped from placing said antennae or satellite dishes on top of their homes to capture signals."

Busybody: "No, you're wrong about tha..."

Me: "No, I'm not. I looked it up a few months ago for my blog. You can't stop anyone from capturing video signals with antennae or dishes. No matter the size or position on or around the house."

Busybody: "Well, I don't know about that, but we need to stop those ham radios."

Me: "Excuse me?"

Busybody: "You know, those ham radio operators and their antennas."

Me: "Oh, well, I didn't know we had a proliferation of ham radio enthusiasts in our neighborhood."

Busybody: "Well, we just don't want all those big antennas in our community."

Me: "But, what if we suffer another 9/11 on a larger scale, or an earthquake, or a devastating event in which all TV, satellite, and commercial radio signals are knocked out? The ham radio operators will be our best line of communication. Shouldn't we therefore foster their hobby?"

Busybody: "Whatever. You just need to realize that if you re-write the covenants like that, it could take you close to two years!"

Me: "Yes, I realize that. That's why I'm sitting at this table, ready to get rid of the ridiculous fluff that has bogged down the residents of this community, not allowing them to better their homes or properties because of some outdated rules and regulations."

Busybody: Walks off in a huff.

GAD! Can we start working on that blogging compound tomorrow? Better yet, can I just give all of you my address, you guys start buying houses in this neighborhood, and we all get ham radio operator licenses and just pepper the place with 20ft tall antennae?

That would be sweet.


Avitable said...

You're awesome. I need to do the same with my HOA, which is over 50 years old and I can only imagine how much of it is outdated and overruled by law.

highlander1463 said...

The thing that always gets me about people like "Busybody", is that they think they are protecting us from something or even ourseslves. To bad you can't write a covenent against stupidity.

Miss Britt said...

I am FedExing you a copy of our HOA covenants.

I mean, since you're doing one anyway...

Not Afraid To Use It said...

OMG I LOVE that you threw the whole 9/11 card at her. Just watch her try and get you voted off the rewrite committee. I would pay to watch that smackdown.

RiverPoet said...

Our neighborhood is even worse, because we are a townhouse community. You can't do anything without God's approval. But I'm with you, it's better to get involved than to bitch (though you won't find me volunteering anytime soon).

I think you should put up a ham radio antenna just because.

Let me know when something's for sale in your neighborhood!

Peace - D

HEATHER said...

You crack me up! I swear I would search the classifieds for a $900 car that is a total junker with rust and bondo to boot and no muffler, just as long as it runs so you could drive it to the grocery store or post office (or just around the neighborhood to really p.o. the nazi's)once per week so it wouldn't just be sitting.
Those covenants are idiotic.
You are such a West Virginian with that "don't tread on me attitude."
That's a compliment by the way!;-)

Ok, Where Was I? said...

You need to put a tip jar over on the side of your blog so we can all donate a dollar, and then you can buy a giant antenna--not a working one, just some huge metal mess--that you can put in your yard. Or on your house! And surely there must be a pro-ham-radio bumper sticker out there that you can get for your car. This is clearly war.

Mrs. Booms said...

I have to love anyone that would bring complete anarchy by remaining lawful to the HOA.

You are my soul sister.

I thought those things were for making sure people had shake shingle roofs and didn't park large RV's and trucks on blocks in their front yard.

Not for telling you that you can't have a satellite dish.


Unknown said...

Way to hold your ground! WooHoo! Can I fly you in the next time I need someone to do that?

Coal Miner's Granddaughter said...

Avitable - Seriously. Stir up some shit. It makes for wonderfully frustrated neighbors. And good blog fodder.

Highlander - Seriously. "IQ under 130? Yer outta here!"

Britt - Duly noted. I'll be expecting them.

NATUI - That's not a bad idea! I could charge for tickets to the smackdown, donate it to the neighborhood, and be a hero. Woo hoo!

Momma - I'll send you the real estate info, baby! :-)

Other Heather - Dude. I'm finally gonna start reading your friggin' blog! Thanks for the hillbilly comment! :-)

OK, Where Was I? - Ooooo, great idea! Except? I would so spend that cash on chocolate. I'm such a loser.

Betsey - Total effers.

Andrea - Hell, yes!

Gypsy said...

Are you a masochist or what? Volunteering for this crap? Really?

I kid. Mostly. Good for you for stepping up and refusing to take the nonsense anymore.

Coal Miner's Granddaughter said...

Gypsy - Yes, actually. I am a masochist. It's a sad fact.