Social Question

Jonsblond's avatar

Should I toss the jack-o'-lanterns in her garbage can?

Asked by Jonsblond (5956points) November 15th, 2019

I live in a 100+ year old Victorian home divided into two apartments. My family is downstairs and my neighbor is upstairs.

My neighbor and her two children put two jack-o’-lanterns on the front porch for Halloween. It is now the 15th of November and they are still there, rotting. My neighbor has a habit of leaving things laying around. She leaves laundry in the shared laundry machine and dryer for days, even weeks at a time. She has also had a large Amazon package sitting in our shared entryway for two months.

I’m tired of being greeted by rotting pumpkins every day and I have family visiting us in our new home for the first time in 10 days. I would like the porch to look nice when they visit. Garbage day was yesterday so that means at least another week of looking at this garbage.

Should I just toss them into her garbage can? I don’t want to step on toes.

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38 Answers

nightwolf5's avatar

Since the rotting pumpkins are of an eyesore and bothering you. I’d say go ahead and put them into her garbage can. I would say by what you wrote. She is so disorganized and has so much stuff all over the place, that she probably won’t care or even notice. I mean, it even sounds odd to still have them sitting there. And it sounds like you don’t feel comfortable approaching her about it.

Jonsblond's avatar

@nightwolf5 Yeah, if I approached her about everything she leaves behind I’d be the annoyance. I’m trying to not be that person. I’ll just toss them.

Jonsblond's avatar

I should add that my entire adult life I’ve lived in either a fixer upper that my husband and I owned or a rental that wasn’t the best. After almost 30 years we finally live in a nice home and we are proud. We want it to be presentable.

nightwolf5's avatar

I understand. And congratulations. I am sorry about your untidy neighbor though. Good luck and have fun with the visit.

I have to also say I can’t imagine how she ordered a package from amazon and left it unopened for two months. Unless you are talking about an open box just left.

Jonsblond's avatar

@nightwolf5 Don’t get me started on this package. It was left on the porch and I brought it in for her. It’s been sitting in the entry unopened ever since. That was two months ago. A few days ago she set it in front of our door. wth? It’s addressed to her. I highlighted her name on the package with a highlighter and put it back where it was. We were having a couch delivered and it was in the way. The package is still sitting where I left it. This woman has me so confused.

nightwolf5's avatar

Wow, I assure you, she won’t have a problem with her pumpkins being gone. She seems a little different, yeah.

Yellowdog's avatar

Place the rotting pumpkins in the entryway beside her door, as you did the package. Write a note explaining that they were making the house look bad from the street.

Or, just toss them on the roof, like I throw my garbage on my next-door neighbor’s roof.

Jonsblond's avatar

Haha. Thanks!

Yellowdog's avatar

Or, put a nasty diaper pail in the hall (whether or not you have a baby) with a note asking not to move. Apologize for the “inconvenience” but say it was too “stanky” for your apartment.

JLeslie's avatar

Have you said anything to her about the trash or laundry? How did she respond?

I’d probably say something to her about the pumpkins. Tell her they need to be thrown out. Give her a day to do it, and if she didn’t I’d trash them. Here’s the thing, you want the place to look nice, so I get it that you would just clean it up, but what makes it not ok is all the other things she doesn’t do. If this was the one thing then no big deal, but if you continue to do everything she’s lazy about it will get out of control and drive you crazy. Hopefully, she is taking care of the trash and the laundry, and then the pumpkin isn’t a big deal.

jca2's avatar

It’s definitely odd. The Amazon thing is definitely inexcusable as you’d think she’d have noticed that her named was on it. Even if she didn’t order it and someone ordered it to be send to her, you’d think she’d notice and care. All of it, added up (the garbage, the laundry, the pumpkins), is very weird.

Is she old? Could it be dementia? Not that you have to be old to have dementia. She could have it in her 50’s, but it’s more likely if she’s older.

rebbel's avatar

“Hey Nancy, wassup?
That box, you know it is yours right?
You know, I was wondering, ’‘maybe she thought it was ours”, but your name is on the tag, just so you know :-)”

“And while we are chatting now, can we clean up the pumpkins, they’re are slowly desintegrating I think ;-)
Might get smelly too, soon, haha..”

All this with a friendly tone.
Should be working (assuming she’s no sociopath).

jca2's avatar

Do you ever see her? It sounds like she’s a recluse.

stanleybmanly's avatar

My bet is that one or more of the kids is of the disposition that the pumpkins must remain. When I was around 9 a kid down the block told his mother that all he wanted for Christmas was for the tree to remain up and decorated until his birthday (the following September). The skeleton of the thing with its lights and ornaments stood in his living room through the 4th of July, whereupon it was transferred to the screened in front porch. But by then the house was an acknowledged landmark. I can remember Summer evenings walking past that house with a car parked at the curb with kids little noses poking out of the Windows.

janbb's avatar

Just throw them out and don’t fash yourself about them.

LadyMarissa's avatar

Have Ethan toss them. I doubt that she’ll say anything; but IF she does, you can honestly look her in the eyes & say “I didn’t do it”.

MrGrimm888's avatar

If you can find a spot for old pumpkin, I suggest you throw it there. It will naturally be harvested, from natural break down.

kritiper's avatar

Yes. Do her the favor. Toss them in her can.

lucillelucillelucille's avatar

I’d throw them out.
If she asks, tell her that you’re baking her a pie with it.:)

raum's avatar

I’d tell her that you’re cleaning up the porch because someone is coming to visit. And add “Is it cool if I toss your pumpkins? I think they are starting to grow!”

JLeslie's avatar

I wouldn’t as her permission. If I said anything to her it would be asking her to get rid of the pumpkins, or telling her I’m throwing them out. She doesn’t deserve that respect anymore I f asking her. She causes more work for the OP than she already has to deal with already in her life. This neighbor is never going to “repay” the favors with neighbor to neighbor help. It’s really a shame. I’ve luckily had good neighbors most of my life. Always willing to help each other. My neighbors make my life easier, not harder.

josie's avatar

Throw them out
(Bring in the package and leave a note that you have it).

Inspired_2write's avatar

Isn’t there a Manager or owner to talk to?
Its his/her responsibility.
Maybe get the rest of the neighbors to confront her as a group?

Jonsblond's avatar

Thanks for the responses. Sorry I’m late to responding to you.

@Inspired_2write Our landlord is a private landlord. There are only two apartments in the building. I’m thinking about saying something to the owner.

These annoyances are adding up. Our first red flag should have been when her dog bit my husband out of nowhere. He was sitting in our shared backyard having a smoke and her son came down with their new dog. The dog got away from her son and bit my husband in the elbow. She came down immediately and apologized. We never did tell our landlord.

Jonsblond's avatar

So, I threw the pumpkins out a few days ago. Today is the 20th. The bottom was rotted out on the largest pumpkin. It was disgusting. I put a Christmas wreath in its place.

Her package is still sitting in the entry, but at least it’s still on her side. She even moved it because the part with her name isn’t facing the front like it was. So odd.

She has a load of laundry in the dryer and washer that has been there for a week, again. I have them all sitting on top of the dryer so I can use the machines.

I have at least 10 years on this woman so I don’t think it’s dementia. I’m only 48. Her kids are 9 and 11.

I haven’t had a chance to say anything to her since I started working second shift. She’s co-owner of a hair salon on the block so our hours conflict. I rarely see her.

Oh, and I noticed her garbage is full when I threw her pumpkins out. Tomorrow is garbage day. I’d assume she’d ask the landlord why her garbage isn’t being taken out once she notices her cans are still full. I moved my cans closer to our back exit, away from the other cans, so she doesn’t use ours.

MrGrimm888's avatar

I had a shitty neighbor once. He thought he could shit all over me. I decided to be the bigger asshole. I left a bullet, on his doorstep. I cut the muffler, and catalytic converter, off of my truck too. I won the asshole fight… He moved away. He’s lucky I didn’t kick his ass. But I became a next door neighbor, he didn’t want to live by. I wound out moving out anyways. His cousin lived in the apartment next to me. They both left. You don’t want an asshole fight, with me…

Right, or wrong, that’s what it came down to . I out assholed, them both. I had several conflicts with both of them. They left… That was years ago. But it worked….

Jonsblond's avatar

@MrGrimm888 I’ve had worse neighbors than the one I have now so that’s why I’ve been silent about this one, except on Fluther. ;)

MrGrimm888's avatar

Ok. But there’s a way to fight this situation.

Jonsblond's avatar

True. I’m responsible for yard work and snow removal since I’m on the lower level. The owner charges extra per month if we don’t want to do it. I thought I’d do it myself to save money. I considered reaching out to her to make sure I’m not responsible for the garbage of both units. I know I’m not but it would be a way of alerting the owner of what’s going on.

janbb's avatar

@Jonsblond Soinds like you’re playing good defense which inmy opinion is the way to go here.

longgone's avatar

Just dropping in to say it’s kind of you to be patient with her. Maybe she has a mental illness or intense stressors in her life.

There was a time not too long ago when I was grieving for my dog, had just lost my job, was taking care of my severely depressed teenage sister, and had just witnessed an attack on pedestrians in NYC.

One day during that time, I woke up from a nightmare complete with the scream I heard at Times Square. I left the house to make more calls to professionals, urging them to take care of my little sister. I remember distinctly how one of my neighbours (unknowingly, of course) picked that day to angrily remind me the front lawn needed mowing.

Jonsblond's avatar

@longgone Hugs to you. I don’t want to be that neighbor and I hate to complain, so I do it here instead. :D

I remind myself that it could be worse. She’s an annoyance but I don’t want to make matters worse.

MrGrimm888's avatar

^It’s certainly possible, that the person is going through something mentally. The state of my house, I’ve noticed, has a direct reflection of my state of mind. When I am severely depressed, everything looks like shit. When I am doing well, it looks great, or better…

Inspired_2write's avatar

Just a note:
So long as you LET her take advantage of you, she will continue to use you.
Perhaps HER real goal is to get you to move?
Think about that.

MrGrimm888's avatar

^Fuck that. Make her move.Or teach her to respect boundaries.

That’s just my opinion. Stand up for yourself.

Jonsblond's avatar

^^That’s interesting. I certainly have legitimate complaints I can share with our landlord. Like her out of control dogs. I’m saving that ammunition for when/if it’s needed.

MrGrimm888's avatar

If I was near you, I’d come by, and tell her myself. Being a former LEO, you get used to telling people what they can/can’t do. People often don’t like it, but it is what it is.

It’s an uncomfortable situation. But, if someone is disrespectful to you, tell them. They may be naive enough to not even know their behavior is disrespectful…

NoMoreY_Aagain's avatar

I would but then I’m a Jack ass anyway.

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