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By Phyllis Gilbert:
It’s been a week and a half around here. That is, the past four days have felt like ten. Among other things, I’ve been wishing my cross-country ski boots weren’t lost in the attic and that I’d thought to buy bacon and dishwasher detergent. There was also the constant worry that the electricity would go off or a pipe would burst, forcing evacuation and lopping billable hours off the week. The cat and I are both thrilled to have dodged those bullets one more time.
There is an interesting disconnect in the little city where I live: frequent and enthusiastic professions of devotion to community combined with chronic bad manners. Against a more or less constant buzz of admiration for our warm and welcoming neighborhoods, plenty of people don’t think twice about doing all manner of things that actually undermine community: letting their children run wild where others are trying to enjoy a meal or a concert; letting their dogs do you-know-what in neighbors’ yards; or using leaf blowers before 8am on weekend mornings … My better angels counsel that these folks are not malicious … Still, it begs the question of how these neighbors ended up so confused about tolerance and courtesy.