Realtor Connie Nompelis (No-buhl-iss, it's Greek) has been making improvements at her "Hawthorne Princess" house, which is a Queen Anne style home, only smaller, with gorgeous hardwood floors and woodwork inside. The floors are not in bad shape thanks to the wonderous preservative power of ratty, crappy carpeting.
Appearances are important, so people who live in the area or browse nearby for similar home bargains will see how things are rapidly changing and improving. Therefore, Connie put out some flowers, top picture. (This image would be the first photo I took with the new digital camera given to me by Melony Michaels in support of the neighborhood revitalization mission of this blog)
Each time I visit the property to check its security or perform some minor task on a labor exchange basis, I make a point of...
...untangling the decorative banners.
In his master work "The Art of War," Sun Tsu said that when your enemy's banners are in disarray, that is the moment to strike. Something like that.
So I always straighten out Connie's banners to broadcast a subtle message: All is order here, all is strong here, all is watched and cared for here. Take your crime and your disorder elsewhere.
Obviously, I am not the only person watching the property. A posse of neighbors checks several times a day, when in the area, and the Hawthorne Housing Director lives right across the alley. When people move into our neighborhood, they do not have to be alone and frightened. Through the neighborhood association and active, involved residents, social networks are formed for the common good. Work, keys, home made pastries are exchanged. Socially, our neighborhood is very much like a small rural town, except for that whole dying of boredom part.