What's Your Next-Door Neighbor Story?

I am certain that my next-door neighbors, a quiet but observant gay couple, think I belong a mental institution.

They're always outside tending their garden or refilling their bird feeder at the worst moments, like when I'm kicking my front door because it won't unlock, or when I'm muttering to myself about my car. I look over my shoulder, and there's one of them--or both--gazing warily in my direction. Sometimes they simply stare at me from their kitchen window.

Once, there was a stray golden retriever strolling up my walkway. As with most strays, I tried to lure him into my house with a piece of lunch meat. When my husband works late, I get very lonely, and I often look to wandering pets for company. I had just about gotten this golden retriever to come inside when one of the men next door approached, saying, "Um, excuse me? That's my dog."

I laughed it off, embarrassed, and explained that I thought it was a stray. He just nodded and took his dog home. I was mortified.

Another time in early October, I'd just been shopping for Halloween costume accessories and decorations. I had so many sacks to carry inside that I ended up wearing my new witch's hat on my head so I could carry it all in one trip. Feeling playful, I cackled out loud as I unlocked my door, only to discover that both of the men next door were observing me over their hedges.

They've also been witnesses to many melodramatic arguments with my husband that took place outside. They have even seen me getting my mail in the most ridiculous outfits. Sometimes I wonder if they sit inside their home and say, "Guess what the lady next door did today? You won't believe this!" Basically, they've seen it all, and I have yet to discover them in an embarrassing situation in return.


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Have a Next-Door Neighbor Story?

As part of our new webcomic, Next-Door Neighbor, we thought it appropriate to have a little contest. Tell us your best true next-door neighbor story, and the winning tale will be matched with an artist and transformed into a webcomic and included as the final installment of Next-Door Neighbor.

About Next-Door Neighbor

No matter how close or how far, we all live next to someone, and we all have a Next-Door Neighbor story. With that in mind, editor Dean Haspiel asked some of his favorite storytellers and cartoonists to create their favorite NDN stories so we could share them with you.

The Fine Print & Contest Rules

By submitting an entry, you are granting SMITH the right to reprint or republish that entry online or in print, as well as make any necessary edits. See SMITH's terms of service for complete details.

This contest ends September 1, 2008. Prizes are not redeemable for cash and must be accepted as awarded. Winners are decided at the discretion of SMITH judges and all decisions are final. SMITH reserves the right to change the contest rules. Enter as often as you want. SMITH reserves the right to reprint or republish all entries.

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