I moved into a new apartment in February after a short stint in Garland, the town often said to be the inspiration for King of the Hill. Most of my time these days is spent painting, doing minor electrical work, and building new furniture. I listen to a lot of country music. I was given power tools a few years ago and they finally are being put to good use. I'll have some photos soon.
The new place is across the tracks from the old. That's true on two levels, literal and metaphorical. Late Thursday night while walking home I saw a shirtless and agitated man pacing the sidewalk carrying a shotgun. Someone had tried breaking into his house, he said. He wanted to know who I was. I told him I lived down the street and he calmed down. I'm glad I was still wearing my teaching costume. I can't imagine someone breaking into my place wearing a v-neck sweater and button down, and I guess this guy couldn't either. The only person I've ever seen breaking into my place wore leopard print pants. Last night a friend and I stepped out onto his porch to have a beer and saw the aftermath of an accident. A crowd of witnesses were telling a cop that the guy who caused the accident drew a gun and put it to the head of the guy who had been driving the car he struck. He had driven off and some cops went tearing off in the direction he supposedly went. After that, the street was flooded with cops and the choppers were called in. For reasons that were never clear, the cops eventually cuffed the guy whose car had been struck. Bad night for him. I haven't seen a gun yet this morning.
I still have to say that I prefer my new neighborhood to the old. Maybe the chances are higher that I'll be shot, but I still like my neighbors now better than I did back in uptown. No one drives a Hummer. No one wears BeDazzled clothes. There's not a W sticker in sight.