A Walk Around
I spent a great deal of
summer and fall walking through my subdivision. I found that if you do
it often enough, you
begin to notice some things. And with those observations, come
questions. Well, at least I have questions.
- For example, I'd see a
dog in a window of a home. How
long had the pet been part of the family? Was it young or old? Is it
the most important member of the household? What does that dog think of
- The OU banner hanging
side of the garage. Is it school pride or does the homeowner want to
just tease the UT fans in the neighborhood? Did he actually go to OU?
Does he have neighbors that don't like him simply because of the banner?
- The container of Round
had been on the side lawn for three weeks. Does the owner of the lawn
ever take a look around? How long will it remain
there? Didn't he use the weed killer to make his lawn look better
in the first place? Didn't the weeds look better than the container?
- The clouds in the sky
orange as the sun goes down. It's majestic. Completely majestic. Why
had I never noticed them before?
- The chalk drawing on
sidewalk. Was the child giggling when he/she did the work of art or
simply bored? Did her parents praise her? When's the last time I held a
piece of chalk?
- The customized sign
professionally placed into the brick by a front door that reads
"Absolutely No Solicitors". Are the people in the home angry? Do they
generally hate people other that solicitors? What happens when someone
doesn't read the sign and rings the door bell to sell something?
- The tire marks on the
by the stop sign. Who was in such a hurry and why? Was it some kid
- The faded boarding pass
Chicago that was blown against a fence. What in the heck did that man
do in Chicago? Who missed him while he was away? Was he happy to go?
Does he travel often?
- The folks that are
pool installed. Did they expect everyday to be a party? Would it be
used? Why do we like water so much?
- The "For Sale" sign in
with the agent's name on it. Why were the people moving? How many times
had the agent shown the house? Did she enjoy that job? Is there
something bad about the house that the seller won't disclose?
- The teenage couple
each other on the drive way engrossed in a conversation. What were they
talking about? Were they boyfriend/girlfriend? Why did they pick
the drive way to have the conversation? Was there anything more
important to them than each other?
- The man who looks like
arriving home from work at 8:00 p.m. Does he always get home that late?
Is it worth it? What job does he have?
- The house with the ski
the drive way. Was it worth the investment? Does it get used enough?
Again, why do we love the water so much?
- The lady walking her
carrying plastic baggies so she can pick up the dog's poop. Who is in
charge on this planet?
- The jet plane in the
into DFW Airport. Where was it coming from? Is anyone looking down in
general direction at that moment? Why do I always think its full of
people coming home?
- The flower beds that
immaculate and the flower beds that are neglected. Why? Is it called
a flower bed even if it has no flowers in it?
- The Kerry/Edwards sign
was placed inside a window of a home. Why inside? Was it being stolen
if placed on the lawn? Why do I think the people in the home might be
- The "Disabled Vet"
on the car in the drive way. What war? How? To what extent are you
- The tiny scooter on the
Will the kid get in trouble for leaving it there? How long had it been
there? Did the now disabled vet at one time play on a scooter as a
- The house with the
bricks. Why do I fear foundation trouble so much?
- The home security
sticker on a
front window. Does that really deter a burglar? Does the home really
have an activated system? How could anyone break into a stranger's home
- The car with the dented
right quarter panel. Why hasn't it been fixed? Is there an insurance
Did they have insurance? What was the accident like? Did somebody get
- The football in the
there anything more fun than throwing a football? Why do I always feel
the need to "drop back" before I throw one?
- All the mailboxes. How
world is all the mail delivered every day? Will home delivery some day
come to an end? Do people still write letters?
- The water running down
curb from a forgotten water sprinkler. Don't we waste a lot of water on
lawns? Why do we treat water like there is an endless supply? Don't we
- The same water that
then runs into
a storm sewer. What's down there? Where does that water go?
- My feet. I couldn't
year ago because of a torn Achilles Tendon. Now I can walk. Why do we
take our health for granted? What would life be like if I couldn't
walk? Is there someone in this neighborhood that can't walk?
- The train horn in the
background. Where is the train going? For that matter, where do
all trains go?
- A stop sign. Everyone
respects a stop sign, don't they?
- Trash set out to be
picked up. Where does all the trash go? When's the last time I
went to a dump yard?
- A satellite dish. So
many houses have satellite dishes. How do they work? Who came up with
the idea to put a satellite in orbit in the first place? How many
satellites are up there?
- A couple walking and
pushing a baby stroller. Why is that so peaceful? Why does it look so
And then I'm back at home.
And I want a drink of water.
Green served as District Attorney for Wise and Jack Counties from 1993
through 2000. He is now a partner in the Decatur law firm of Smith
& Green, P.C. and is Board Certified in Criminal Law.
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