Friday, October 31, 2008

"We Love You Miss Hannigan"

Have you ever had a neighbor that just drives you batty? Here at work we've got one. I'm going to call her Miss Hannigan. She doesn't look a thing like Carol Burnett, but in actions alone, they could be twin sisters. Before I say anything else I would like to point out that we were here first. Our nursery was here years before she built her house, and there should be a grandfather clause somewhere that allows us to plug our ears and ignore her.

Back in the beginning she complained about little things:

"Umm...there is a tiny bit of water from your sprinklers that is getting on the roof of my goat's pen. Could you adjust the water?" - We adjusted the water.

"I saw a drop of water this morning on my kid's playhouse. Remember I asked you to adjust the water?" - We adjust the water again.

"I think my goat has a cold from the sprinkler water." - We turn the sprinkler head completely off.

"The music your crew plays is too loud." - I talk to the hombres and tell them to please keep the music down.

"...It's just that the music is giving me a headache." - Guys, turn down the music!

"You know, if you had to listen to that music all the time it would make you a bit touchy too." - Guys, the neighbor is loca I realize that, but turn your dang music down!!!

"Are you ever going to do anything about the music?" - That's it. I'm sorry. I realize it's your culture, and you would rather DIE than not listen to this ranchero stuff you call music, but new rule: No music allowed, unless you have earphones. End of discussion.

***In Miss Hannigan's defense, she did bring over a treat basket filled with all sorts of Latin goodies...her way of making nice. It was too late. The biggest treat basket in the WORLD wouldn't make up for the fact that the guys now have to spend ALL DAY in silence.

"Can you build a new fence? I don't like that you can see into my yard." - A request we ignore initially.

"Seriously, I want a new fence. And I want it to be white vinyl." - We laugh a little, because does she not know that Dad is 150% opposed to anything vinyl? And we ignore her request.

She sends a letter respectfully requesting a new fence. "I don't like my kids to sleep in the playhouse at night because of the fence issue." - Why? Are they afraid of trees? That's all they see from their side of the fence. Rows and rows of trees. No customers ever wander down that far, we don't even wander down that far. "Trees are the answer." Just ask anyone...except Miss Hannigan.

"Okay, if you don't want a vinyl fence maybe we can do a wood fence."

One day I was out in the nursery and I saw a goat...HER goat, eating some of our plants. I sent it on it's way and didn't say anything about it. A few days later I saw the goat again. I threw something at it and it disappeared to his side of the fence. The third time I saw the goat I called Miss Hannigan.

"Miss Hannigan, I'm calling because I'm concerned about your goat. I worry for it's safety. I'm afraid that if it keeps coming over to our side of the fence, my guys might kill it and eat it for lunch." - Yes I really said that. And it gave me great pleasure. I think I may have pushed her over the edge though.

We eventually replaced the fence. She bought the materials and my guys installed it. She had a vine growing through and around the old fence and there was no way the guys could get rid of the fence without taking out the vine as well.


My response: "Miss Hannigan I don't know if you remember this, but we are a nursery. I happen to have access to more vines. If it's that important to you, I think I know where you can get another one."

"Oh..." she said in a small voice. I never heard anything else about the vine.

Her latest complaint is the most petty one yet. In a two week time period we heard this from Miss Hannigan:

"The fan on greenhouse 3 is too loud and it's disturbing my sleep." - That was a message left on the answering machine.

"I really wish you would do something about that fan." - That was a conversation she had face to face with my brother."

"I've respectfully asked you to do something about the fan. If you had to listen to it at night maybe you would be more inclined to fix it." - This in a hand written letter taped to our office door.

***Now, here's the thing. It's not THAT loud!!! Cars driving by her house at night are louder than the fan. Kids squealing are louder than the fan. Her husband probably snores louder than the fan.

We adjusted the fan, tweaked some things, and made it so that it barely hums. If you stand in front of her fence you can barely hear a thing. The guys' music is louder than the fan. (I no longer tell them to turn it down. In fact, maybe I'll encourage them to turn it up!)

Miss Hannigan is still not pleased. She went to the city office building to complain. We got an email from Mr. Lindon City himself telling us that they had a woman who was "visibly upset and distraught...the noise is obviously a problem for her" or something like that. Umm...hello? Maybe she should move to Brooklyn, give her a little perspective on noise levels.

We have enough problems with Mr. Lindon City as it is (I swear he's out to get us), we do not need Miss Hannigan feeding the fire.

A few days ago I listened to a message from Miss Hannigan: "Maybe you could plant some trees all along my fence line. That way the trees will block out the noise." THERE IS NO NOISE!!!

Mr. Lindon City paid us a visit. He went and stood in front of Miss Hannigan's fence and said, "You're kidding right? THIS is what she's complaining about?"

Mr. Lindon City's boss called us yesterday. "We are getting complaints..." Sure you are. Have you talked to Mr. Lindon City? Well, no. Why don't you talk to him before you get in our face again.'s what I'm wondering. Would it be too obvious if I bought a pack of ear plugs and left them on her porch? I'd even create a cute treat basket to go with them!


Karen said...

Oh my goodness, what a PAIN in the you know what!!!!!!!

Aaron and JaLae said...

Do it Noelle! Please send the "treat basket"...for all of us - DO IT!

Could you also make a special section on your blog with Miss Hannigan updates? I haven't laughed that hard for a while...

David G. Woolley said...

I like this Miss Hannigan. She's got talent. Anyone who can get under Noelle's skin has got to be inventive, quick on their feet, persistent, maybe even dogged, no nonsense, unrelenting, smart. Very impressive Hannigan. Does she tight rope walk too? Sign her up. Put her in charge of the nursery's ivy division or maybe the small animal sales. I hear goat milk sales down and she's just the one who could beef em up. A little secret on that one. Goats lactate better after a few weeks of exposure to Latino samba. Maybe you should keep Hannigan in ivy sales. She's got schmaltz. She's got chuzpah. She's a keeper. Who could ask for anything more?

Hannigan. Hannigan. Hannigan.

What a woman.


Noelle said...

Dave, I think people only read my blog to see if you've made some wisecrack comment. Thanks for not letting them down! :)

David G. Woolley said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
David G. Woolley said...

Does Hannigan do outdoor potty worm clean up? She can turn a sprinkler on that and never worry about where the water falls.

If you send her a treat basket, include some chicken drum stick soup. Mmm, good.

And keep Hannigan away from the customers. I have this feeling her talents are better suited to non-customer service jobs. Which takes us back to the outdoor potty clean up.


Noelle said...

Dave, you're scaring the kids.

Anonymous said...

Speaking of kids, did you read what Ryan wrote over at the Top of the Morning. He named you by name. Shameful!