Thursday, December 16, 2010

Unsigned threat

Yesterday this was left in my letterbox;

The first thing I note is that the complaint is unsigned. Which immediately raises my hackles - like bloggers and commentors who hide behind anonymity to carp and criticise.

The next is the pedantic detailing of times. The aggrieved writer must be writing them down. They seem a little early as I usually only wake Sam at 7 but they are thereabouts. However, to describe after 7am as "very early hours" is silly. On a week day - the only time I walk Girl at that time - anyone working or attending school is up and about.

Then the "continual barking". Girl, a trained heading dog, gets very excited about her walk and yes, she does bark "madly" from the door to the gate when she quietens down as she goes on the leash. So she barks for a few seconds.

She is not out of control.

But as the writer is threatening a complaint to the council, I wonder what "continual barking in the very early hours" will infer? A dog left alone to bark constantly at one or two in the morning? That would probably provoke an unnecessary and unwarranted investigation.

Then I consider the line about having some consideration for others in the neighbourhood. Having put an anonymous note in my letterbox I am now wondering who I have upset. Is it a newcomer or a neighbour I usually get along with? The writer has cast suspicion over the other neighbours by refusing to sign their name or talking to me personally. In my book that is a more anti-social action than my neglecting to shut my occasionally barking dog up.

I will endeavour to do so by putting her on the leash before she exits the house. But I now face the unpleasant experience of setting off on our walk wondering who is disapprovingly watching us from behind twitching curtains.

Perhaps I will set off today loudly singing "Joy to the World...."


Adolf Fiinkensein said...

I suggest you adopt the following practice.

At 0700 hours fling open all the windows in your dwelling and expose your neighbours to force nine Wagner of Mahler for two minutes only (time controlled)while you take your dog out to the street.

When they complain, tell them you are doing so to mask the sound of your dog's momentary barking on account of an anonymous complaint.

BTW, where I live, council bylaws permit preparatory work on construction sites to commence at 0700 with full on machines and hammers at 0730.

You anonymous correspondent could lean over and pat her husband on the bum upon being awakened and demand her conjugal rights. (Only girl or a girly boy would write a snarky note like that.) Hubby might prefer the excited yelping of his dog rather than yours.

Anonymous said...

You are allowed to toot the horn at seven. If you do that regularly they will already be awake and the dog won't bother them as much.

Joke :)

Another annoying anonymous person

B Whitehead said...

It's probably some grumpy old lady living alone, who complains about everything.

Oswald Bastable said...


A sleep-in that never happens!

Manolo said...

Surely, these people must be on the DPB! :-)

Anonymous said...

Why not simply enable whatever it is that requires a person to register if anons irritate you that much? Ian

Lindsay Mitchell said...

Ian, Because registration deters comments. There are people who comment anonymously for good reasons. Others simply do it because they lack the courage of their convictions.

Lindsay Mitchell said...

...and I wasn't particularly thinking of this blog, but the blogosphere in general.

Cactus Kate said...

The person wrote the times down because the first thing people do when they receive a complaint like this is to ask you to be specific. This won't be an isolated incident and you have pissed them off over a long period.

They also wrote the complaint anonymously as they predicted a defensive reaction and didn't want a fight because they cannot be arse getting into an argument with you. Your dog is pissing them off and they want you to do something about it.

This isn't a threat, more as a last warning. They will call the Council.

And no, I don't live next to you Lindsay but if you insisted on having a dog that barked excitedly at 7am I would insist on cranking my stereo up at 1am on Friday, Saturday and maybe even Sunday nights and inviting 20 boozing mates to an afterparty when no doubt you would be trying to sleep.

pdm said...

Lindsay you say the offender is a trained heading dog. From my experience (I spent the first 17 years of my life on farms) heading dogs hardly bark at all. They are prone to nipping heels though.

Your whinger should be thankful you don't have a Huntaway.

Lindsay Mitchell said...

"And no, I don't live next to you Lindsay but if you insisted on having a dog that barked excitedly at 7am I would insist on cranking my stereo up at 1am on Friday, Saturday and maybe even Sunday nights and inviting 20 boozing mates to an afterparty when no doubt you would be trying to sleep."

Well more fool you. You would be imposing a ritual on yourself that would probably become a fag for us both when you could have just knocked on my door and I would have tried to oblige.

I don't make a habit of intentionally pissing people off.

Lindsay Mitchell said...

Pdm, I meant herding dog.

She is a Huntaway.

Anonymous said...

Reading this reminded me of that fairly recent episode when people living close to the Karori cemetary complained to the council about tuis waking them up at dawn.
Your dog sounds like a happy critter and it is probably a safe bet that we wont see it featured on one of those SPCA animal rescue programmes. I see you as a lady with a lab or one of those English based dogs. Ian

pdm said...

Well Lindsay a hunt a way barking is only doing what comes naturally and 7am is hardly early as others have said. Lucky it is not Adolf taking her for a walk at 5.30am.

Mark said...

Sorry Lindsay I have to disagree with you, you are passing on a cost to another person that prefers to sleep at that time.

They may work shifts (night) or as I do start late as I finish late at my job.

However I would advise that person that what when you have gone to sleep for 45mins to an hour to engage in excessive noise of 10-15 mins to wake you up. Turn about is fair play if you are going to continue to be inconsiderate. Maybe tape your dog barking and playing it back after you have gone to sleep.

Interrupted sleep is annoying, you have now joined the party of my rights and enjoyment are greater than anybody else.

You have taken on the entitlement of the privilege elite and screw the little people.

Lindsay Mitchell said...

No Mark. You and Kate do not get it. I said I would endeavour to shut my dog up (and I have been successful) because I am prepared to cede to the person's complaint. I do not set out to intentionally antagonise. It was the method by which the complaint was made that I primarily objected to.

Notwithstanding, I don't think the council would act on a dog that barks for a short period at that time. And the neighbour's description of it was misleading.

robertguyton said...

'carp' 'criticise' 'aggrieved'
'pedantic' 'threatening' 'silly'
'disapprovingly watching us from behind twitching curtains'
'cast suspicion over the other neighbours'
'threatening a complaint'

I can understand why the letter-writer wanted to remain anonymous!

Anonymous said...

"It was the method by which the complaint was made that I primarily objected to."

Yeah. YOU'RE the aggrieved party, here.

You have a right-wing blog, but you REAK of a sense of entitlement.

Hint: your dog -- love it though I may -- HAS NO rights. Your neighbor -- hate him/her though I may -- does.