Author Topic: SO on dog brushing rude  (Read 4046 times)

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darkprincess

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SO on dog brushing rude
« on: October 04, 2013, 02:11:07 PM »
I was just reading the other post about a person complaining about a non-neighbor brushing their dog on the public sidewalk. Most people seem to think that the dog brusher wasn't rude. I actually don't think he was rude either but I feel uncomfortable with the idea of someone doing this outside my house.
Assuming that the action does not include littering, property damage, illegal behavior, blocking the entire walkway, and trespassing is there any action that would be rude to do on a public sidewalk that is not your neighborhood or the neighborhood of your host.
For example, what is the etiquette of driving to a neighborhood that you dont live in and are not visiting any people who live there and park and then play music and dance on the sidewalk? Sunbath? sit down on the curb and knit? Let your children play with chalk on the sidewalk? Teach your child how to ride a bike? Non emergency Car maintenance?

In my neighborhood which used to have a drug problem we would be very unfriendly to people who we didn't know who would park in the neighborhood and then not visit a neighbor. We worked with the police on our tactics and it was very effective. I have heard you can do similar tactics if prostitues are looking for business in the neighborhood. To get the dealers out of the neighborhood we even resorted to taking pictures of people like the dog brusher, writing down their license plate numbers, and asking them questions. "Why are here? Who are visiting? Do you need directions? Is there a reason you need to do whatever you are doing in this neighborhood?" It wasn't just one neighbor who would do it. Multiple people would come outside of our houses and harass the person as a group. You would be surprised by the things dealers would do to be in the neighborhood. Some would even walk their dog, play cards on the corner, once several grown adults played hopscotch.

gen xer

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #1 on: October 04, 2013, 02:36:23 PM »
 I walk and bike in other neighbourhoods and I wouldn't be too happy if I was hassled because I didn't live there.....I'm in Canada but last I checked it was still a free country.  If you are within the bounds of the law you can go where you want.  I think it would be very rude and presumptuous to question them.

Unless you know all your neighbours really well, stay home and watch out the window all the time how does anyone know who's who anyway?

Mental Magpie

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #2 on: October 04, 2013, 04:21:53 PM »
I walk and bike in other neighbourhoods and I wouldn't be too happy if I was hassled because I didn't live there.....I'm in Canada but last I checked it was still a free country.  If you are within the bounds of the law you can go where you want.  I think it would be very rude and presumptuous to question them.

Unless you know all your neighbours really well, stay home and watch out the window all the time how does anyone know who's who anyway?

Walking and biking are completely different than the prolonged presences the OP mentioned.  I agree I would be pretty peeved if I was just passing through and was harassed, but I can see where strangers playing hopscotch on the sidewalk would raise eyebrows.
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Lynn2000

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #3 on: October 04, 2013, 04:30:21 PM »
I think if your (general) neighborhood has a crime problem and you've resorted to working with the police on tactics to reduce this, that's beyond the scope of etiquette. I know there are "Neighborhood Watch" groups, for example, that are trained to take down license numbers, etc., of people doing suspicious things in their neighborhood. But again, I don't think that really has much to do with etiquette at that point.

I'm not a very confrontational person. If I saw someone who "seemed weird," I would either ignore them or call the police (non-emergency line probably). There's nothing in between for me.

On the etiquette spectrum, I think it's generally fine to approach someone carefully and ask, in a polite tone, if they need help. Like if they're lost or looking for a certain house or something. But if they say no, and they keep standing there doing whatever you thought was weird, I'm not sure there's much else to be done within the scope of etiquette. Either you think it's suspicious enough to call the police about, or you decide to ignore it. Multiple neighbors hassling a stranger might be an approved technique from a safety point of view, but not etiquette, I think.
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Twik

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #4 on: October 04, 2013, 05:06:19 PM »
I walk and bike in other neighbourhoods and I wouldn't be too happy if I was hassled because I didn't live there.....I'm in Canada but last I checked it was still a free country.  If you are within the bounds of the law you can go where you want.  I think it would be very rude and presumptuous to question them.

Unless you know all your neighbours really well, stay home and watch out the window all the time how does anyone know who's who anyway?

If you've never lived in a high-crime or red-light area, you may not realize just how your freedom to "go where you want" is infringed upon by criminals and their customers.
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Tea Drinker

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #5 on: October 04, 2013, 05:21:28 PM »
If we stipulate that this isn't already a high-crime area, and most areas aren't, one of the things that is likely to help keep the crime rate low is having lots of people out on the streets doing ordinary things like walking to the store, reading a book, playing jumprope or basketball, gardening, or talking to each other, all of which adds to the number of eyes on the street. The stranger walking down the street looking at your garden, admiring the architecture, or trying to figure out what kind of bird they hear is also a potential witness to suspicious activity. The idea that I should stay out of a quiet, low-crime neighborhood because it's a quiet, low-crime neighborhood may seem intuitively valid, but my avoiding the area doesn't actually make the residents safer.

Where I used to live, I both was and felt safe walking home through the park at 10 or 11 at night--because other people were likely to be doing the same, or out there with their dogs, or using the playground. If the park had been deserted, I might not have felt safe at 11 in the morning.
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gen xer

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #6 on: October 04, 2013, 07:45:44 PM »
I walk and bike in other neighbourhoods and I wouldn't be too happy if I was hassled because I didn't live there.....I'm in Canada but last I checked it was still a free country.  If you are within the bounds of the law you can go where you want.  I think it would be very rude and presumptuous to question them.

Unless you know all your neighbours really well, stay home and watch out the window all the time how does anyone know who's who anyway?

Walking and biking are completely different than the prolonged presences the OP mentioned.  I agree I would be pretty peeved if I was just passing through and was harassed, but I can see where strangers playing hopscotch on the sidewalk would raise eyebrows.

I can't really see why people would bother to go to another neighbourhood to do so....but all things being equal I wouldn't be able to tell who is a stranger and who isn't.  For all I know the neighbour has friends from out of town staying with them - I can't presume to know everything that goes on in a neighbourhood.

darkprincess

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #7 on: October 04, 2013, 09:25:16 PM »
I am not trying to be snarky but are people saying that it is not rude for me to go to someone else's neighborhood, set up a chair in the public area between the sidewalk and the street and knit while I let my daughter ride her bike up and down the sidewalk, which is legal in my city. I could listen to music, sunbath, pick dandelions and make daisy chains and then hop back into my car and drive away?
I am not sure why but it just seems weird to me.

esposita

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #8 on: October 04, 2013, 09:34:43 PM »
I am not trying to be snarky but are people saying that it is not rude for me to go to someone else's neighborhood, set up a chair in the public area between the sidewalk and the street and knit while I let my daughter ride her bike up and down the sidewalk, which is legal in my city. I could listen to music, sunbath, pick dandelions and make daisy chains and then hop back into my car and drive away?
I am not sure why but it just seems weird to me.

I don't think anyone has said that at all. The only specific activities mentioned were bike riding or walking.

And then I think the point Gen xer was making was that if someone else were doing those things, gen xer wouldn't really have any way of knowing whether they were a neighbour or not...and therefore wouldn't be able to know if it were weird or not.

darkprincess

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #9 on: October 04, 2013, 09:45:34 PM »
I am not trying to be snarky but are people saying that it is not rude for me to go to someone else's neighborhood, set up a chair in the public area between the sidewalk and the street and knit while I let my daughter ride her bike up and down the sidewalk, which is legal in my city. I could listen to music, sunbath, pick dandelions and make daisy chains and then hop back into my car and drive away?
I am not sure why but it just seems weird to me.

I don't think anyone has said that at all. The only specific activities mentioned were bike riding or walking.

And then I think the point Gen xer was making was that if someone else were doing those things, gen xer wouldn't really have any way of knowing whether they were a neighbour or not...and therefore wouldn't be able to know if it were weird or not.
Good point,  I am actually curious about this. Our neighborhood because of our history is very suspicious of people we don't know. I want to know what is acceptable behavior now that we don't have the problem.  :D
I know it may be hard to believe but all of us on our block do know each other. Many of us have each others cell phones. If an unfamiliar car is seen on the street we do ask each other about it and if someone is having guests for a few days they usually mention it to the closest neighbors. I actually live within 1/4 of a mile to the downtown area of a middle sized city and we are very proud of the clean up we did. We don't want it to go back to how it is.

TootsNYC

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #10 on: October 04, 2013, 09:56:15 PM »
I would say that the thing now is to approach people still, but perhaps not as aggressively.

"Hi, How are you, are you new to the neighborhood? I'm sorry, but I don't recognize you." Then you say, "What brings you here?" Etc.

And just be nosy in a friendly way. You'll figure out what's up based on their answers.

If they say, "oh, no, I live 6 blocks over, but my daughter needs to practice her bike riding, and your sidewalk is smoother than mine," that gives you info. And you can see what might be true.

You also can say things that make it clear that you DO know everyone, and that this is a generally alert neighborhood.
So if they say, "I'm visiting my friends over there," you can say, "Oh, I was just talking to them last week. They hadn't mentioned you were coming. How do you know them?" And listen for if they use the right names, or if their story just sounds about right.

A very friendly interest in someone who enters your neighborhood is always appropriate. And what you hear can help you.

As to whether it's rude or not--I think it's borderline "not done" (i.e., not "rude" the way we normally use that term, but "not good form," which is *also* the purview of etiquette).


snowdragon

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #11 on: October 04, 2013, 10:33:51 PM »
Quote
From the OP: For example, what is the etiquette of driving to a neighborhood that you dont live in and are not visiting any people who live there and park and then play music and dance on the sidewalk? Sunbath? sit down on the curb and knit? Let your children play with chalk on the sidewalk? Teach your child how to ride a bike? Non emergency Car maintenance?

 "park and then play music and dance on the sidewalk"  If I can't hear it in my house with the doors and widows closed, and you're not trespassing on anyone's property - enjoy your dance.

Sunbathe- Rude and unless you were trespassing you'd be blocking the sidewalk

sit down on the curb and knit?   rude, and dangerous. with the 6" depth of the curb here and the fact that people park against them, you'd be blocking traffic, and likely on someone's grass.

Let your children play with chalk on the sidewalk?   Rude, why should someone have to look at your kid's artwork because you don't have a place for them to play/don't want it on your sidewalk,/ whatever scenario would inspire this.

Teach your child how to ride a bike?  Please do. As log as you are on the side walk or in the street ( we have a dead end street that is not used for anything but access for the one house on it here) - go for it. I'd welcome you-might even offer you both a bottle of water.

Non emergency Car maintenance?  Not a problem...but you'd be doing it in the street which is not safe - for your own safety I'd tell you to go down to the dead end.

The only thing I really would resent are the street racers that blast their music so loud the walls in my house vibrate, the chalk art or someone sitting on my lawn.



KenveeB

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #12 on: October 04, 2013, 11:12:17 PM »
The only one of those I'd have a problem with is the car maintenance, just because I'd be peeved at a puddle of oil or something being left behind. Still nothing illegal, just inconsiderate. I've walked my dog in other neighborhoods if I was trying to kill some time or out and about. As long as you're not blocking the street or sidewalk, causing damage or something that requires cleanup (like the car maintenance), or being really loud or obnoxious, I don't see anything wrong.

gen xer

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #13 on: October 04, 2013, 11:31:10 PM »
 I don't mean to be snarky either but is knitting, sunbathing, other weird activities etc really an issue?  I am kind of thinking it was just meant as a general question about being in other neighbourhoods other than your own.

Don't get me wrong I am not trying to be dismissive of issues in high crime neighbourhoods - I am just having a hard time wrapping my head around being able to have that kind of intimate knowledge of your neighbours and their doings that you would actually be able to question a stranger in that manner.  I have good friends in the neighbourhood but I don't know "everything" about them and who they associate with. 

I just can't imagine that kind of hyper-vigilant monitoring of the neighbourhood.  Would it not take up an extraordinary amount of time?
ETA...

There is another part of me that thinks it would get really intrusive to be queried about comings and goings all the time.  Of course we all appreciate common sense and looking out for each other but that could cross the line really fast.  I don't think I would always want to explain everything :

"Hey vigilant neighbours - this week I will be having my co-worker give me a ride on Monday, my MIL come over for dinner, the plumbers coming Tuesday and if you see a new red car it's because my best friends just traded her black one in."

There's looking out for each other and then there's not minding your own business and getting in someone's face.....and that is rude IMO.
« Last Edit: October 04, 2013, 11:42:10 PM by gen xer »

snowdragon

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Re: SO on dog brushing rude
« Reply #14 on: October 04, 2013, 11:44:14 PM »
I don't mean to be snarky either but is knitting, sunbathing, other weird activities etc really an issue?  I am kind of thinking it was just meant as a general question about being in other neighbourhoods other than your own.

Don't get me wrong I am not trying to be dismissive of issues in high crime neighbourhoods - I am just having a hard time wrapping my head around being able to have that kind of intimate knowledge of your neighbours and their doings that you would actually be able to question a stranger in that manner.  I have good friends in the neighbourhood but I don't know "everything" about them who they associate with. 

I just can't imagine that kind of hyper-vigilant monitoring of the neighbourhood.  Would it not take up an extraordinary amount of time?

Not really. I now live in a low crime area but we just had an INS bust because someone noticed that there were people she did not recognize going in and out of an apartment across the street. It takes being aware and being willing to interact with people. Some are better at than others.