Author Topic: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)  (Read 8615 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Knitterly

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1559
    • That other knitting blog
Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« on: April 11, 2013, 08:58:16 AM »
I sometimes worry about being the "weird neighbour".  After all, I am perfectly aware that I have more than a few oddities about me.  Just last night, I pulled over the car on the side of the road to hop out and grab a twig off the sidewalk (in the pouring rain!!).  I'd spotted it and it was the perfect size and shape for whittling.  (Yet another hobby.)

I want to do something, but worry it may be flat out weird.

I live in a neighbourhood with LOTS of trees.  There are 3 halves of the neighbourhood.  My section is the newest.  Directly next to my section, starting about 10 houses down, is a *very* established section that was built between the 50s and the 70s.  Beside that is a quasi-newish section that was built between the late 80s and early 90s.  As the neighbourhood has been built up, every house was given a tree, starting in the 50s.  They are maples and oaks.  The 50s-70s houses now have these huge and beautiful oaks and maples in the front yards.  So every spring, many houses have bundles of branches for "yard waste pickup".

How weird would it be to collect some of these branches?  I don't want to mess up people's tied up bundles (city won't collect a bundle that isn't properly tied up). 
Would it be very strange to go around on a Saturday afternoon and knock people's doors with very large trees (with obvious falled branches) and ask to collect some from their yard (I'd explain why I'd want the wood).  Or do you think it would be better to find a park with lots of big trees and try stalk the park for fallen branches or keep an eye out for city workers cutting down stray branches.

The thing is, any old twig won't do.  It should be a nice wood that is good for carving and isn't too flexible when dry.  Maple and Oak are ideal for natural wood carving, as they cure easily in a home oven and look so lovely when finished.

I would appreciate thoughts and direction from other ehellions, crafters and non-crafters alike.

edited to let newcomers to the conversation know that I've decided to limit my interactions to those neighbours who are already outside doing yardwork on a sunny day, but would still appreciate input on the overall etiquette of approaching people in your neighbourhood.  :)
« Last Edit: April 11, 2013, 04:07:43 PM by Knitterly »

Margo

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1556
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #1 on: April 11, 2013, 09:03:49 AM »
I don't think knocking and asking would be rude, provided of course that you politely accept whatever the answer is.

In terms of how 'weird' it might be, it wouldn't seem weird to me, but it might seem less odd if rather than knocking on doors, you ask if you happen to see someone working in their garden, as it might come over as less 'pushy' if you are stating a covnersation when someone is actually working on the trees.

Redwing

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 342
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #2 on: April 11, 2013, 09:41:01 AM »
Too bad you don't live near me, Knitterly.  I have at least four 100 year old maple trees throwing their twigs, branches, etc. into my yard all the time.  My husband would be thrilled if you came and asked for the wood.  In my town, you pay for waste management to pick up your yard waste, except in April and October.

WillyNilly

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 7490
  • Mmmmm, food
    • The World as I Taste It
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #3 on: April 11, 2013, 09:41:17 AM »
If I were your neighbor, yeah Id think you were weird. But not in an objectionable way and I wouldn't mind at all.

Outdoor Girl

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 13666
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #4 on: April 11, 2013, 09:49:22 AM »
If I were your neighbor, yeah Id think you were weird. But not in an objectionable way and I wouldn't mind at all.

I agree.  But I'm also the weird neighbour.   ;D  I'm turning my front 'lawn' into all gardens and I have a huge veggie garden in the back yard, with mulch down instead of grass.  My grass was mostly weeds and with the cosmetic use pesticide ban, it was going to take a lot more work to keep a lawn in good shape than it is going to take to maintain the gardens once I have them in.

I have an oak in my back yard.  If you are ever up my way, drop by and see what you can find.  And since the dang thing could always use a trim, I'd even cut a branch off for you.   :)  (I'm an hour north of TO.)
I have CDO.  It is like OCD but with the letters in alphabetical order, as they should be.
Ontario

sparksals

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 17337
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #5 on: April 11, 2013, 09:57:28 AM »
I would think it strange.  I think it is better to go to  a public park rather than door to door.   If I saw you going door to door I would think you are selling something and not answer.   

bloo

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1269
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #6 on: April 11, 2013, 10:06:51 AM »
If I were your neighbor, yeah Id think you were weird. But not in an objectionable way and I wouldn't mind at all.

Yeah me too! I'd think you were weird in a cute, charming and eccentric way and then offer you some coffee and ask about your whittling! :) But I approach strangers all the time and start conversations when it strikes my fancy - a trait shared by my son and that embarrasses my DH and DD...so I'm one of the weird ones too (strange combination of introverted and extroverted I guess).

Happy whittling!

*new*mommyagain36

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 258
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #7 on: April 11, 2013, 10:25:42 AM »
Doesn't seem weird to me and I think this is a situation where it can't hurt to ask.

As an aside, my parents neighbor is from Thailand and one day she saw my Dad outside cleaning fish.  She asked him for the heads.  Turns out she fertilizes her (very awesome) garden with them.  Dad said at first he was a little shocked by the request but after a very pleasant conversation he did give her the heads and then started saving all future heads and giving them to her.  I can remember carting fish heads to her in a little plastic bucket as a kid.
In return we got lots of fresh veggies and spring rolls.  Yum!
"Oh people can come up with statistics to prove anything.  14% of people know that" - Homer Simpson

Surianne

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 10783
    • Prince ShimmerShine Moondream's Blogging Adventure
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #8 on: April 11, 2013, 10:34:01 AM »
I don't think knocking and asking would be rude, provided of course that you politely accept whatever the answer is.

In terms of how 'weird' it might be, it wouldn't seem weird to me, but it might seem less odd if rather than knocking on doors, you ask if you happen to see someone working in their garden, as it might come over as less 'pushy' if you are stating a covnersation when someone is actually working on the trees.

I think asking when you come across people outside is a great idea.  It wouldn't bother me if you knocked on my door to ask, but if there are neighbours you don't know well yet, I'd worry about disturbing a baby or meal or someone in the shower or something similar. 

Whittling is very cool, I'd love to see some of your pieces -- do you have any photos up in the crafting section at all?

Lynnv

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2488
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #9 on: April 11, 2013, 10:36:45 AM »
If I were your neighbor, yeah Id think you were weird. But not in an objectionable way and I wouldn't mind at all.

I agree.  There isn't anything wrong about being a little weird.  And what you would be asking me isn't annoying, rude or creepy, so I would be fine with it.
Lynn

"Anyone who considers protocol unimportant has never dealt with a cat."  Robert A. Heinlein

Knitterly

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1559
    • That other knitting blog
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #10 on: April 11, 2013, 10:55:35 AM »
I don't think knocking and asking would be rude, provided of course that you politely accept whatever the answer is.

In terms of how 'weird' it might be, it wouldn't seem weird to me, but it might seem less odd if rather than knocking on doors, you ask if you happen to see someone working in their garden, as it might come over as less 'pushy' if you are stating a covnersation when someone is actually working on the trees.

I think asking when you come across people outside is a great idea.  It wouldn't bother me if you knocked on my door to ask, but if there are neighbours you don't know well yet, I'd worry about disturbing a baby or meal or someone in the shower or something similar. 

Whittling is very cool, I'd love to see some of your pieces -- do you have any photos up in the crafting section at all?

Only one so far.  :)

I will try keep it to the weekends and look for people actively working in their gardens to avoid disturbing people who may not want to be disturbed.

Glad to know it's not completely weird to ask neighbours for what is essentially their garbage.  ;D

Poppea

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2457
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #11 on: April 11, 2013, 10:58:20 AM »
I wouldn't mind but I would think it was a bit weird

magicdomino

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 4615
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #12 on: April 11, 2013, 11:05:50 AM »
If I were your neighbor, yeah Id think you were weird. But not in an objectionable way and I wouldn't mind at all.

Same here.  Shame you aren't in my area, though.  I had a 50 year old plum tree cut down.  The branches ended up in a chipper, but I keep thinking that the wood is too pretty to burn in the fireplace.  The bigger logs and the stump may end up on Craigslist for any wood carvers.

Knitterly

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1559
    • That other knitting blog
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #13 on: April 11, 2013, 11:14:48 AM »
If I were your neighbor, yeah Id think you were weird. But not in an objectionable way and I wouldn't mind at all.

Same here.  Shame you aren't in my area, though.  I had a 50 year old plum tree cut down.  The branches ended up in a chipper, but I keep thinking that the wood is too pretty to burn in the fireplace.  The bigger logs and the stump may end up on Craigslist for any wood carvers.

Oh, yes it is a shame!  Plum wood is stunning!!!

Barney girl

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 328
Re: Neighbourly weirdness? (ie, not being the "weird" neighbour)
« Reply #14 on: April 11, 2013, 11:36:46 AM »
I sometimes worry about being the "weird neighbour".  After all, I am perfectly aware that I have more than a few oddities about me.  Just last night, I pulled over the car on the side of the road to hop out and grab a twig off the sidewalk (in the pouring rain!!).  I'd spotted it and it was the perfect size and shape for whittling.  (Yet another hobby.)

I want to do something, but worry it may be flat out weird.

I live in a neighbourhood with LOTS of trees.  There are 3 halves of the neighbourhood.  My section is the newest.  Directly next to my section, starting about 10 houses down, is a *very* established section that was built between the 50s and the 70s.  Beside that is a quasi-newish section that was built between the late 80s and early 90s.  As the neighbourhood has been built up, every house was given a tree, starting in the 50s.  They are maples and oaks.  The 50s-70s houses now have these huge and beautiful oaks and maples in the front yards.  So every spring, many houses have bundles of branches for "yard waste pickup".

How weird would it be to collect some of these branches?  I don't want to mess up people's tied up bundles (city won't collect a bundle that isn't properly tied up). 
Would it be very strange to go around on a Saturday afternoon and knock people's doors with very large trees (with obvious falled branches) and ask to collect some from their yard (I'd explain why I'd want the wood).  Or do you think it would be better to find a park with lots of big trees and try stalk the park for fallen branches or keep an eye out for city workers cutting down stray branches.

The thing is, any old twig won't do.  It should be a nice wood that is good for carving and isn't too flexible when dry.  Maple and Oak are ideal for natural wood carving, as they cure easily in a home oven and look so lovely when finished.

I would appreciate thoughts and direction from other ehellions, crafters and non-crafters alike.

No comment on your question, but the bolded reminds me of my aunt who described her parents as living in a three sided square. I know exactly what you mean even if the maths doesn't work.  :)