SCENE: Pleasant autumn day in Escrow Heights, Washington, a middle-class cul-de-sac just far enough from Puget Sound to not afford views of same. Local resident, YETI insulated mug of pour-over coffee in hand, plunks down at flat screen to engage in civic life in the post-journalism world. First daily reality check: Nextdoor, the rapidly expanding community civic-discourse site, the lather/rinse/repeat content on which, alas, very much speaks for itself.

GB Bush, Marination Gulch

Has Anyone Seen My Monkey?

My Rhesus monkey, Artemis, is missing. He is a brown monkey, and I fear for his safety. Last seen chasing a butterfly in my front yard next to the compost bins — do you have the compost bins? Sorry, but everyone really SHOULD — and he slipped his leash. I feel awful and miss my monkey. Please respond here or call 911 if you see Artemis, who usually does not bite.

The Backstory: Our fictional Nextdoor thread probably isn’t about you

Vivian Truhart, Mercer Heights

So sorry you have lost poor, dear Artemis, who must be so frightened. We will keep an eye out during our usual patrols for ne’er-do-wells around sunset. We have called 911 and told the police we will be searching.

Mildred Wainright, Bologna Court

Our hearts go out to you, GB! We have started a dedicated FB page for tips or sightings of Artemis. We also have called 911 and told the police to look at the FB page, and continue to look at it until directed otherwise. Thoughts and prayers.

Willie Ripperton, Lava Falls

I am not in the least surprised that your monkey Artemis has fled. What did you suppose would happen when you and everyone else here decided it was OK to continue to emit CO2 into the atmosphere for your entire life spans? It’s a wonder Artemis was born in the first place.

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Jane Smith, Mayberry Lane

Willie is right on. Species are vanishing from the planet at an unprecedented rate, and all most of you can do is sit around and dial 911 about some guy’s jail-breaking monkey. What is wrong with you people? Wait’ll I see y’all at our next caucus. Wait; do we still have those?

William Westinghouse Weyerhaeuser IV, Royal Bluff

Wow. Gee whiz. Holy Moses. And every other “expletive” I can think of. When it first appeared a couple years ago, I thought this would be a “safe space” for people to share their recipes, gardening tips, restaurant suggestions, book discussions, advice on dealing with “newcomers” and other matters of vital concern — leaving politics in our sock drawers, as it were. So much for that! The remarkable speed with which this conversation about a missing primate devolved into a political spitball-flinging match is horrifically depressing, and indeed is indicative of the general breakdown in civic decorum and civil discourse that so plagues our society today!

Martin Mothright III, Royal Bluff

Right on, WW. I was always taught to have manners and to speak to people as I expect to be spoken to. Clearly that has all gone out the window! What has happened to this country? I am shocked and disappointed at this development, and come to think of it, nearly everything else happening anywhere, anytime, for any reason. P.S.: I have called 911 and asked police to consider these important questions.

Nextdoor is a growing civic-discourse online site, and it’s not just about coyotes spotted in the neighborhood. Though there’s plenty of that, too. (David Miller / The Seattle Times)
Nextdoor is a growing civic-discourse online site, and it’s not just about coyotes spotted in the neighborhood. Though there’s plenty of that, too. (David Miller / The Seattle Times)

User 12934871983712349, Rancor Street

Hey, William! Bite me! People like you will be the first into the guillotines! Watch your back, Mr. 1%. You peeps are all the same. Now we know where you live!!!!

William Westinghouse Weyerhaeuser IV, Royal Bluff

User: I will not be intimidated by you or your kind. I have called 911 to report your hostility to the authorities, and hit “ignore” for your name on this site. Have a nice life!

Cynthia Mortinson, Paleo Place

William: “Your kind?” What is that supposed to mean? How do you know what “kind” this person is, and more important, why should that matter? It is people like you who are ruining the country, or what’s left of the country, if we can even call it a country anymore. Did you think this was going to be someplace for you and your golf-cart buddies to tell Dad jokes and arrange tee times?

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Sorry, Mr. Establishment! Those days are over. People like you make my skin CRAWL. I literally mean it. Right now, my skin is over in the corner, shivering with rage, after it slinked off me and slithered past the couch and our St. Dane-a-Doodle. Do you think I enjoy sitting here, muscles and fat globules and various organs exposed, with no skin? Of course you do! I know all about you, and if you ever try to cut in front of me in line at Whole Foods, well, don’t expect a polite grin, Capt. Privilege.

William Westinghouse Weyerhaeuser IV, Royal Bluff

I don’t even know where to start with your delusional rant. I hope you and your skin get back together. Clearly your trial separation is not going well.

William Westinghouse V, Lower Royal Bluff

Don’t waste your breath, Pops. Stupid is as stupid posts!

Cynthia Mortinson, Paleo Place

BITE ME, WILLIAM(s)!!!

William Westinghouse Weyerhaeuser IV, Royal Bluff

And with that, I block you, as well. Nice knowing you. Not!

GB Bush, Marination Gulch

Um, OK! Thanks everyone. I think. Has anyone seen my monkey?

The Smiths, Smith Court

Help Our Son Save for New Crossbow

Our oldest son, Ransom, is home from some “time away” and is seeking odd jobs around the neighborhood. In full disclosure, he has some semi-recent unpleasant “history” to deal with, but the worst of this was pleaded down to petty larceny, and he is starting anew. Very trustworthy and reliable. Strong as an ox! Please call us with any yardwork or housesitting needs! (Note: He also could clear brush, but prefers not to deal with blackberries.)

Robert Dylan, Escrow Heights

URGENT WARNING: COYOTE SIGHTING!!!!

Last night around 9 p.m., after milking our goat, we saw what I believe to be a coyote — at the very least, a rude, unkempt dog with no collar — lurking around on 37th Street — right out in the open, as if he owned the place!!! PLEASE BRING YOUR GOATS AND OTHER KIDS INSIDE. I have dialed 911 and reported to police.

Billy Blanks, Ennui Flats

Hey Bob, does Artemis the monkey know about the coyote? HA-HA! Perhaps he should. Can he outrun a canine? HA! (I’ll be here all night; don’t forget to tip the waitress!)

Samantha Willingham, Trainor Commons

Disgusting Poop Bags

For months — OK, revelation coming: YEARS — I have put off saying anything about this, but a person can only be pushed so far. What sort of a country are we living in? I find it difficult to tell, based on the number of filthy bags of disgusting dog poop I see deposited alongside our once-lovely local trails and sidewalks.

Do you people suppose there is some hired Poop Fairy who regularly combs the neighborhoods of our otherwise-pleasant city with the sole mission of picking up your dogs’ smelly, disgusting droppings? I know some people say they leave the bags for when they return from their walk, because they don’t want to shuffle around carrying 5 pounds of poop on person. Well, let me tell ya something: You’re carrying around 5 pounds of poop on person pretty much all the time! Do you think it’d be proper to leave THAT sitting in an Exorcist-green bag along the trail for all of us to “enjoy” until you get around to “finding the time” to return and pick it up?

Seriously, people, clean up after your dog. If you don’t, you’re likely to be called out on Nextdoor. (David Miller / The Seattle Times)
Seriously, people, clean up after your dog. If you don’t, you’re likely to be called out on Nextdoor. (David Miller / The Seattle Times)

I have called 911 and alerted the police to this wave of excremental lawlessness, created a dedicated anti-poop FB page (please “like,” which of course does NOT mean you like discarded bags of poop!!!) and started a change.org petition to the city council. If you see these poop bags, call 911 and report it. (Squeaky wheel, y’know!)

Bill DeBlazio, Hamptons Reach

Wow. Hostility much? Please breathe deeply. Lots of things to worry about here and beyond. The planet is dying, if you have not noticed. Major starvation across the globe. Drooling idiots running the country and a bought-and-paid-for Congress. Poop bags? Seriously? Forest for trees, people!

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Martha Wheelhouse, Skunk Beach

Right on, BDB. Lots of local issues “stinkier” than poop (smiley face here). A couple weeks ago, a young man in an odd hat walked past my house. Neither myself nor my husband had ever seen him before. (Yes, we called 911.)

Beyond that, we now have clear doorbell-cam evidence that packages are being stolen all over the neighborhood, that gas-powered leaf blowers run by city employees (probably at 89 bucks/hr PLUS BENEFITS) should be banned immediately, and that the conniving raccoons and coyotes are now colluding and conspiring to get into the garbage totes on Friday morning. Don’t even get me started about the swooping crows and those noisy owls! We paid $5,500 in taxes last year, and what has the city done about all this? Jack squat! It all makes me ill.

GB Bush, Marination Gulch

Eyes on the prize, people. Monkey. Has anyone seen my monkey? If you find my monkey, I will personally come and doorman your Amazon packages into your house.

Lydia Light, Wanton Excess Heights

BEAR: SOMEONE SAW A BEAR!

I didn’t know this was possible, what it was doing, where it was going or why I am TYPING IN ALL CAPS! But I thought everyone should know.

Mildred Prufrock, League of Women Voters

Community Forum

Hi Everyone! Just wanted to invite all posting and lurking here to our biannual candidates’ forum, Friday at 6 p.m. at the Eagles Hall on Aerie Blvd (kitty-corner from the fourth Starbucks in that half-mile stretch, if you’re going east to west). One of the great things about the forum is that it gives citizens a chance to get out of their houses, meet their neighbors and get face time with civic leaders who love to hear from city residents about problems facing the community. Snacks will be served!

Monte Smython, No Address Listed

WOW. Thanks so much, Mildred. I had high hopes when this page first started that people might make it the one place we could KEEP POLITICS OUT of things. But here you come, right in the middle of dealing with some serious Local Issues, to jam partisanship back down our throats. Not sure how you sleep at night, but thanks for nothing!

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Alice Blankenship, Middle Finger Reach

Um, Monte. The LWV is a nonpartisan civic organization that exists to facilitate constructive dialogue and inform voters. What is your malfunction? Were you dropped on your head as a small child?

Monte Smython, No Address Listed

So predictable. “Nonpartisan,” my arse! That group has been a front for libs and socialists forever. Did you never get any history? Turn on an AM radio, and enlighten yourself. I suppose you think “Snopes” is also an arbiter of fairness and truth? Typical!

Alice Blankenship, Middle Finger Reach

Nice Knowing Y’all

OK, so we might as well use this platform to inform our five remaining sane friends: We are moving to New Zealand in September. Does anyone have any spare moving boxes? We could really use some.

GB Bush, Marination Gulch

Alice: I have moving boxes. Lots and lots of moving boxes. I will deliver them to your home, pack them up and prepare them for shipping if you can help me find my monkey. His name is Artemis, and he is missed.

Landon Michaels, Ponderosa Heights

Crime Wave Crashes in our Driveway

Hey everyone! Not sure if this has come up here before, but two main things of concern have arisen: Someone broke into our Buick Enclave Avenir the other day — in BROAD DAYLIGHT! They took our iPad, a Zagat’s Guide and a couple bucks’ worth of change in the ashtray we keep to park for 5 minutes downtown, LOL! Not a big deal, I guess, but we feel violated. And it was such a nice car — not inclined to boast, but it was around $58K, fully equipped.

Not sure what has happened to this community or this country, but don’t get me started on that! Of course, we called 911 and reported this, but just wanted to let everyone know.

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Also: Has anyone else noticed how many “unclaimed” poop bags are lying around on local trails? And what is with all the slowpoke drivers in town with “Oregon” license plates? For the love of God!

Milton Martin, Languishing Pines

Seeking Roof Help (Post Sponsored by Gutter Queen, LLC)

Hey all. We’re looking for a good gutter-cleaner. No shifty types. Licensed and bonded only. Thanks in advance.

Laura Ingalls, Prairie Reach

Milton: Try Gutter Queen. Used them for years; absolute best.

Miley Richards, Martintown

Gutter Queen is the WORST. Never use them! Totally ripped me off one year back in the early ’70s. (Called 911 to report; got NO response from police.)

Steve Austin, Texas Street

Have had mixed success with Gutter Queen. Use at your “own discretion,” LOL.

Wilma Slate, Bedrock Estates

Hugs to All!

I just wanted to take a moment to thank all of the engaged citizens here — and the site hosts, even though they are inundating us with ads, as if we’re hapless dupes. Makes this old gal wonder: What in the world did we ever do without this service?

GB Bush, Marination Gulch

Monkey. For the Love of All That is Holy: Monkey

Brown, furry creature. Missing. Missed.

Sigh. Never mind.