About 5 years ago, I drove home from work to hear the dulcimer tones of Dead Mama's generator. This is a sad, salvaged item that hops, skips and jumps its way through life and is so loud that my Nephew's rock band would probably go over ask them to turn it off during a set.
I also note Rum Son and his niece, her boyfriend, the yardman friend and a stranger are outside having an argument that is louder than the generator. I opted against picking up the mail.
Rum Son had been filling me in on his niece. The boyfriend is allegedly an out of work EMT. The niece works but not at anything with any real money. They have been living there rent free for years. The boyfriend, stays up all night and sleeps most of the day and expects Daddy, who was well into Dementia at this point, Dead Mama and Rum Son to watch the 2 year old and the infant, while his girlfriend is at work.
I am told, they had a 1200 dollar electric bill. Rum Son expected the niece and boyfriend to pay half or at least pitch in a significant portion. She goes to the office and pays on the bill, 50 bucks. The shit hit the fan. They fought over it. Things became horribly messy when in an attempt to get even, the niece called the Department of Children and Families and reported Rum Son as abusing and neglecting his parents.
Out comes a poor DCF worker who Rum Son tells me finds no sign of elderly abuse, but in a vindictive turn, Rum Son files a DCF complaint against his niece and boyfriend for the same charges against their 2 little kids. And to top it all off, starts legal eviction proceedings on them. He proudly told me he taped the eviction notice to their bedroom door.
Meanwhile, while they were busy filing DCF charges and eviction proceedings, no one paid the electric bill and it was cut off. Hence the lovely sounds of the overloaded and tired generator, puttering away and the meltdown between the family in the driveway.
The next day, around dinner time, we had a friend over who had brought over tickets for a charity event we were attending. Through the front window, I see Rum Son, shirtless, dirty and smoking a cigarette, making a bee line for our door.
"Rock, paper, scissors?" I asked. Recently we have added "Lizard, Spock" to the game, since The Big Bang Theory started that routine. Ed volunteered to go and I was left to explain to our friend. I still don't understand someone coming over to tell their woes when it is very obvious that company is over. I guess he was hoping THIS would be the time we invited him in and offered him a drink.
After about 5 minutes outside, Ed comes back in and Rum Son paddles off to his house. Understand, Ed 'yadda-yadda'd' a lot of the conversation. I am not sure what the point of the visit was either, unless Rum Son was hoping we'd make a monetary contribution to his cause.
The stranger from the day before was DCF, who was sick and tired of constantly being called into the middle of the family battle. In true form, that led to a battle with DCF and both family members. He also explained that they had 2 water mains coming into the house and the water company had turned the wrong one back on. Yes, no power, no water and 7 adults and 2 children in the house. I'm so proud at this point. Then he was whining about the Electric company needing another deposit before turning the power back on. I don't know if he came over to explain the fight from the day before because he was embarrassed or just felt he needed to tell someone lucid his side of the story.
Somehow, either by canvassing the rest of the neighborhood or some other means that I don't want to know about, the power came back on later that night. Old spark and putt generator was turned off and every light in the house was on. They wonder why they have a 1200 dollar electric bill. Evicted niece disappeared for a long time, until suddenly showing up again with children and a new boyfriend in tow. And by children I mean a new baby too.