Into thin air

March 2, 2003

they’re gone. the neighbors out back disappeared. one day, i saw their silver rocket peel into the alley. the next day, rima told me they were gone. the black curtain that had cloaked the living room was sitting in the trash can. the only trace left was two identical plants on the porch steps, one alive, the other dead.

we were convinced that there were four of them occupying the one-bedroom guesthouse. one: julie, the stick-thin fashion queen. two: anger management, her boyfriend. three: another girl, maybe her sister. four: three’s boyfriend.

to be honest, i never liked them. anger management always paced on the front porch barking angrily into a cell phone. julie constantly parked in front of our garage despite the open spaces everywhere else. three and four would be inches away from me but never looked me in the eye.

call me crazy, but i like neighbors who smile when you pass by and say hi back when you say hello. i don’t like being woken up at 4 in the morning by a chorus of giggles and screams and “fuckkkk”s passing by my window.

we were afraid to complain about them because they outnumbered us. plus, their dog, likely trained by mr. anger management himself, had a set of vicious looking fangs and barked like he was set to kill.

it figures that the one time that they went unnoticed, the one time i’d actually like to say hello how are you goodbye, is the day they left for good.


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