By on August 26, 2020

ford

Your author was backing out of his parking spot last night when something stopped him in his tracks. A glimpse of something in the side-view mirror led to a moment’s hesitation… and some serious, judgmental eyeballing.

While yours truly will always stop to admire a Fox-body anything, there was plenty wrong with this example. An example that may have been closer than it appeared. Seems the kids across the street have a visitor — or perhaps even a new ride.

Due to a lack of taste on the part of the owner, or perhaps a prior one, your author hopes this automotive outsider doesn’t linger too long in the ‘hood.

Picture it: a black, last-gasp Fox-body Mustang, only with cheesy chrome side and wheel arch trim befitting a Grand Marquis, underscored by a mismatched and severely dimpled body kit. Those side sills looked like a pie plate following a hailstorm.

On its own, an early ’90s Mustang is something to feel good about, but someone went ahead and ruined this thing — at least until someone decides to undue the damage done. Imagine having to look at it every day. Imagine having to look at it every day and maintain a friendly relationship with the owner, which, thankfully, yours truly does not have to do. People don’t talk to their neighbors on this street.

But you might find yourself in a different situation. The vehicle that offends your sensibilities might just live next door or across the street. It might be an ostentatious status symbol that gets under your skin, a complete wreck that $50 at Pep Boys could at least make more presentable, or someone’s kid’s ride with a rifle volley for an exhaust that jolts you out of bed at all hours of the night.

Tell us: Is there a problem in your neighborhood?

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62 Comments on “QOTD: There Goes the Neighborhood?...”


  • avatar
    Rocket

    Older Dodge Ram Hemi, modified, or more likely broken, exhaust, lift kit, fender flares, light bar, push bar, cheesy broken chrome grille, chromed window deflectors only partially adhered, rust and/or damage on every body panel but perfect chrome wheels wearing knobby off-road rubber. You can hear this thing coming from miles away. Don’t know where it calls home, but it rumbles through the neighborhood several times a day. Absolutely grating.

    • 0 avatar
      gsdupont

      Yeah I’ve got something similar in my neighborhood except it’s a early 2000’s Ford F-150. I keep thinking it can’t run much longer sounding and looking as bad as it does but somehow it has.

  • avatar
    Lie2me

    Did you ever spend an afternoon routing around Pep Boys? It’s a trip to see all the automotive do-dads you can peel and stick to a car. Although I am all for creative expression, like clothes or home decor you’ve got to know when to stop.

    On the other hand there is a Hummer H2 on my street that’s straight stock, because what can you do to that overwrought beast that GM didn’t already do?

    • 0 avatar
      ktm

      “On the other hand there is a Hummer H2 on my street that’s straight stock, because what can you do to that overwrought beast that GM didn’t already do?”

      Go to Miami or LA. Chromed-out and riding on 22s is just the start.

  • avatar
    karonetwentyc

    The Subwoofer Family has moved in next door. I believe that the vehicle in question is an early-to-mid-2000s Chevy Malibu.

    The idea of going out there in the middle of the night and loosening certain rattle-prone pieces of trim has occurred to me, but then we’d have to live with that noise at 2am as well.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      Subwoofers are the worst. Sound pollution at it’s finest. I am grateful no one in my neighborhood has any

      • 0 avatar
        sgeffe

        My condo building and another building, which share a common parking area, have a few inconsiderate drivers who come in with the “ho-s and b——es” filth blaring from an overtaxed sub or stereo system with the bass cranked up to the maximum. The “boom-boomboomboom” stuff is especially annoying!

        It was even worse back in April, when I had just started working from home, where I called the police a couple times after I had to interrupt a few videoconferences because of the noise, which was primarily caused by visitors to a rental unit in the adjacent building. The day before Easter, I walked over to my patio door which faces the driveway, intending to start using my phone to record the cars and license numbers of the seeming wagon-train of visitors to the unit with filthy music blaring. Turns out that a kid who was living in that unit part-time with the daughter of the occupants was dealing dope to high-school-aged kids who were pulling into the lot.

        After that piece of trash was arrested, things have improved; the week before I was suddenly (with 16 hours’ notice) called back into the office last Thursday, the two toddler-aged boys also at that unit were outside constantly, and those two kids have only one voice volume: ear-piercing SHRIEKS!

  • avatar
    MiataReallyIsTheAnswer

    Let’s hear from my neighbors, pretty sure *I* am the problem.
    Even with 3 acres, there’s a lot of vehicles around :)

    • 0 avatar
      jack4x

      This is pretty much me as well.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        I have a huge driveway and currently along side of my shop is my son’s lifted F150 with a blown front diff. He has a new pickup box strapped to the top of it. In front of it is my buddy’s 70’s era lifted V8 Jeep CJ but at least that is currently running and street legal. My son’s Colorado is in front of one of my garage bays with a smashed grill and front end parts for the F150 filling the box.
        With that being said, I have a young neighbour with a mildly lifted Ram 1500 with big tires and loud exhaust. He enjoys entering the subdivision at full throttle even though he has young children.

        • 0 avatar
          ktm

          I had (sold last July) a 1972 240z with an LS1. No resonator, shorty headers, Flowmaster 40 (almost NO baffles) exhaust. I live at the very top of a hill in my neighborhood. I tried to baby the throttle driving up to my house on a Saturday morning after a C&C outing, but I would set off all the car alarms for the 0.6 mile drive.

    • 0 avatar
      Land Ark

      Me too. 6 cars for 2 people – 2 car garage.

      Fortunately all of them are operable or at least LOOK like they are. Our driveway can hold all 4 outdoor cars but most of the time at least one is in the street, at least when I actually have to go to work. I know there are people out there that have a real problem with people parking in the street. But our road is wide enough and only people in the neighborhood should be driving on it.

      There is also a guy who rides a minibike up and down the street at a high rate of speed and it’s loud. I know folks hate that. And then there’s the guy with the slammed ~07 Civic Si sedan with a loud exhaust and subs but he generally drives during the day and it doesn’t really cause a disturbance.

      • 0 avatar
        highdesertcat

        Most jurisdictions allow you to park a vehicle or trailer on the street as long as it is properly licensed and insured.

        Other jurisdictions will not allow a pickup truck or trailer parked on the street or even in your driveway, even if it is currently licensed and insured. My sister had to built a separate tall-door garage for their truck to keep it out of sight.

        Why would people move into such a restricted neighborhood in the first place?

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @Land Ark – my 18 year old got a 4×2 Colorado last year from a neighbour as his first vehicle. Once he graduated and had a steady income he wanted a 4×4. He bought a 1996 F150 with an 8 inch lift on 35’s with front and rear lockers. It’s a piece of sh!t but the lift, lockers, winch and new 35’s cost more than what he paid for the entire beast. His grandfather gave him his mint 1998 Jelly bean extended cab F150 as a grad gift.
        I probably will have to add one more vehicle once my 16 year old starts to drive. I’m telling my older son that he’ll have to offload the Colorado to my 16 year old when the time comes. He protested but “bank of Dad” has a cash investment on all three.

  • avatar
    JMII

    There is a guy on my block that has what looks like a decent Nissan 240SX… but its apparently non-functional as it hasn’t moved in years. A large block of wood is wedged under the front tires so it doesn’t roll down the driveway. I feel sorry for it and can’t believe someone hasn’t offered to get it all fixed it up. It really needs to be saved.

    Two houses away there are some punk kids always thrashing on some project car and “testing” it by using the street as a drag strip. Its loud, annoying and of course not safe. Thankfully they wrench on the car in the garage so its not an eye sore (yet).

    The biggest problem in my neighborhood honestly is the lack of parking. As a result we basically have become a one-way street with cars constantly blocking a travel lane. However you never know which lane will be blocked since the only rule is cars must be pointed in the travel direction. Its like a slalom course which sounds fun until you have to deal with a trailer, delivery vehicle or garbage truck.

    • 0 avatar
      Dan

      +1 to bad parking. You expect this in the city, but even 20 miles out the standard new development has become a 5000 foot McMansion which would comfortably host 30 people, with two driveway spots and 35 feet of street parking until the next one.

      • 0 avatar
        Lou_BC

        @Dan- the new “fad” is massive houses filling almost every square inch of tiny lots. Driveways are tiny.

        • 0 avatar
          JMII

          Yep – welcome to south FL. This is the second home I’ve lived in with a zero-lot-line configuration, this means you only have a yard on 3 sides of your home. The side between me and my neighbor is just a 6 foot easement. However I do live on a small lake which is nice. My driveway is so small that a full size truck with a winch and a tow hitch would encroach on the sidewalk.

          I’m double screwed because I have fire hydrant on my property so I can even park in front of my own house.

          • 0 avatar
            Lou_BC

            @JMII – My ex’s cousin’s house had a driveway so short that my F150 parked with the bumper touching the garage door encroached onto the sidewalk. No one seemed to mind since everyone had similarly small sized driveways.

        • 0 avatar
          ktm

          …and the garages are built too small and are usually full of spillover storage, so on the driveway the SUVs go.

          My house was buil in 1967. My driveway will fit 4 cars, 2 side by 2 side) and still have room on the sidewalk. The garage is fairly spacious as well.

          When buying (in Los Angeles), I only looked at these older homes to get away from th zero-lot line, cookie cutter boxes with no driveways.

        • 0 avatar
          loner

          Dingbat down the street from me has a 3 car garage. However it is filled completely to the brim with crap.

          Meanwhile his family’s 7 cars are crammed into a tiny driveway where 1-2 of them need to be sideways to fit.

          Like a teacher on Saturday. No class.

    • 0 avatar
      randyinrocklin

      I saw an article that said a 240SX went for 30+K.

      • 0 avatar
        Arthur Dailey

        Where I live, a city on the outskirts of Toronto, no overnight street parking is allowed. You can get an emergency permit for up to 3 days. But even those are not issued from December through to the end of March. So you either fit your vehicles in your garage/on your driveway, or you have to find someplace else to park.

        And a neighbour down the street got a ticket because his project car was up on blocks for an extended period, which is also not allowed.

        • 0 avatar
          Lou_BC

          I’ve had a few people leave cars on the street in the winter. I was surprised that they were not towed. The city snow clearing crews did completely bury one car over a month period until he got told to move it. it took the dude hours to shovel it out.

  • avatar
    e30gator

    I live on the main thoroughfare that winds through our neighborhood. We have two attention seekers that love to make as much noise as possible. The first one is a guy I call “Boomer Bob.” Bob drives a red Fox body convertible with some sort of aftermarket exhaust. The speed limit in our little deed restricted community is 20mph. Bob peels out of his street and guns it to about 40 in first gear EVERY time he leaves. The other DB is “Millennial Matt” who drives his raised jelly bean F-150 exhaust delete, and massive subwoofers through the neighborhood at 2am rattling windows and setting off car alarms. Too bad they don’t sell spike strips on Amazon.

  • avatar

    Neighbor across the street, allow me to set the scene.

    -Their downspout to get water away from the house, instead of being buried, runs through the grass.

    -The grass gets too long every time before they cut it, then they don’t always trim around the aforementioned black tubing.

    -One of their four cars is a crap gen 2 Explorer Limited, in dark purple minus clear coat. And it’s loud.

    I saw the homeowner once a couple years ago,as he was pulling his pristine brown early C4 Corvette into the garage. Had on a blue dress shirt with white collar and cuffs, like it was 1986. It’s a weird place over there.

    • 0 avatar
      Arthur Dailey

      @Corey In quite a number of cities including Toronto it is now illegal to run your downspouts underground into the storm or waste water lines. Many cities will actually pay for the cost of disconnecting your downspouts and running then out into the lawn/garden or into a rain barrel.

      In some areas, including multi-million dollar earning professional hockey coaches the dress shirt with the different coloured collar and cuffs is still considered ‘stylish’.

      As to vehicles in our neighbourhood how about a late model high performance domestic muscle car? That shakes the windows every time it starts up? However the owners are such nice people, that far outweighs any petty annoyance. Besides we all enjoy any chance to see/ride in/watch them work on it.

      • 0 avatar

        @Arthur While it may be illegal some places, it’s not here, because he’s the only one with such an exposed tube. Mine’s buried as well.

        Maybe he was displaying his sartorial elegance, but I’m thinking more stuck in a time warp. The rest of his place is not a good look.

    • 0 avatar
      FreedMike

      One of my neighbors has barrels under his downspouts to catch rainwater. Considering how much rain we get here in Denver, I don’t see the point.

      And in the driveway…a C4 ‘Vette, two tone gold over brown, with houndstooth cloth seats.

  • avatar
    Steve Biro

    The problem in my neighborhood is that it is populated by lemmings. One person buys a boring CUV and, within a year, a third of the houses on the street have the same make and model vehicle parked in the driveway. Sometimes even the same color. A true microcosm of American society.

    • 0 avatar
      Arthur Dailey

      With the large number of retirees and stay-at-home wives in our neighbourhood we seem to have an inordinate number of Dodge Journeys and Pontiac Vibes/Toyota Matrixs (Matrices?).

      Plus quite a few classics. 60’s muscle cars, Italian ‘coupes’, quite a few 20th century Porsches. There is a house that has a Citroen Deux-Cheveux, original Fiat 500 and classic VW Beetle in its extended driveway, all under car oovers. One neighbour who recently moved had a Cadillac CTS-V wagon as his daily driver and a mint ’56 T-Bird which lived in his pristine garage.

    • 0 avatar
      fn2drive

      This post just drips with arrogance and contempt. So does the racially insensitive title of this topic.

  • avatar
    Dan

    My neighborhood is awfully mellow from a vehicular standpoint. A couple of rust buckets parked on the street, which don’t bother me at all, but nobody runs straight pipes or listens to vibrant music. One of the swarthy bastard kids at the end of the cul de sac couldn’t keep it under 50 mph but he couldn’t keep it out of jail either so that one’s solved for a couple of years now.

    But they make it all up and then some with the hired Mexicans running leaf blowers for four hours every single day. Whoever invented those things should have one inserted in his azz and run until he explodes.

  • avatar
    geo

    My mother’s elderly blue-haired female basement tenant owns a purple PT Cruiser, complete with flame package, which she parks prominently out front. She paid a lot of money for this vehicle a couple of years ago (I believe $5000) and she continues to pour money into the vehicle, which requires constant mechanical repairs.

    Sometimes I wish people would talk to me before buying used turds. Another nearby friend just spent $4000 buying a 2002 Taurus with an unsolvable fuel system problem.

    • 0 avatar
      Lie2me

      My 91 year old mother has the same exact PT Cruiser. She loves that car. Bought it new 20 years ago and now has 44K miles on it. She’s never had a problem with it

    • 0 avatar
      MoparRocker74

      I owned one a first-year GT Cruiser with a manual. It’s essentially a Neon SRT-4 hatch with a few differences and a bodystyle that’s actually useful for things. AND, a total sleeper. I put the hurtin on more than a few tuners who didn’t even see it coming.

  • avatar
    Kyree S. Williams

    The pre-2010 Charger and 300 are my bitch-eating-crackers cars. I cannot stand them.

    • 0 avatar
      MoparRocker74

      I think the first run 300’s are the best looking ones. The single paone quarter windows give them a cleaner, coupe-like look. REALLY sharp
      If the rear door handles are shaved.

      As a fan of all LX cars, I have to pretend the early V6 models don’t exist. They’re usually run down and absolutely trashed with cheap garbage mods like stick on chrome, ghastly 22” wheels, lambo doors etc. Hemi cars of that vintage are often clean and well kept.

  • avatar
    MoparRocker74

    Some would definitely say me, as I’ve been in my condo for nearly 9 years and have owned 7 different vehicles in that time, all but one loud, brash, and a little ridiculous. Of course all have been maintained, clean, and I don’t go out of my way to do WOT rips down the road or rev my engine needlessly. A cold start by an uncorked hemi probably isn’t music to the ears of the neighbor who has some egg shaped hybrid minivan thing in the driveway but we all get along.

  • avatar
    Yankee

    As the neighborhood mechanic (they call me The Hooptie Whisperer) the cars I hate are ones people buy without getting them checked first (I offer to do it for free for all the people’s cars I work on so I won’t be stuck working on junk). I hate it when someone spends their money and I have to give them the bad news they are about to part with way more of it to keep their purchase on the road. As far as annoyances, two fat balding old men trying to recapture lost virility with deafeningly loud crap Harleys blasting up the street multiple times a day on the weekends are the ones I’d really like to see put their organ donor cards to good use (since neither wear helmets). It’s amazing to me they are allowed to drive something that unbelievably loud. But just like the similarly insecure guys with lifted pickup trucks with wheel spacers that let their stone-throwing knobby tires hurl gravel at all angles, they get away with it because the police everywhere long stopped caring about enforcing the vehicle code.

  • avatar
    Jon

    I dont care what the neighbors drive or how it looks as long as their crap doesnt keep me from sleeping or as long as they dont speed up and down the street when my kids are playing out front.

  • avatar
    Art Vandelay

    Probably my oldest’s car. But it is at least quiet and all the same color.

  • avatar
    Russycle

    Kid across the street had a diesel pickup he liked to start at 6:30 in the morning then let it idle for a few minutes, not my favorite time to listen to diesel clatter. It’s been gone for a few months, guess I should count my blessings.

    I’m in a college town and just down the street from the high school, so I get to hear a fair number of fart cans pass by every day. Not so many these days of course.

  • avatar
    ajla

    I don’t live very close to people by design.

  • avatar
    tankinbeans

    My neighbor directly next door has 3 dead cars in his driveway that have sat, unregistered, between 12-18 months. The same neighbor routinely has about 10 other people all driving singly who visit and block most of the street. It’s wide enough for 2 cars to drive past, but these guys park on both sides and mess with traffic flow.

    The rules in our neighborhood are that street parking is prohibited, but nothing ever happens.

    Never mind the subwoofer crowd who stroll through and don’t turn them down. I generally have no issues with subs, and went through my short faze where I had some. That said I only had them turned up on the freeway, and I turned them way down when driving through neighborhoods.

  • avatar
    55_wrench

    Life’s great now. I’m in a quiet neighborhood with an occasional hog going down the street a couple of blocks over.

    30 some years ago in another world we lived in the last of 3 rented shotgun houses in a row. The guy next door was a cheery John Candy kind of guy who had a faded orange Jeep Wagoneer with the Navajo tape stripe job and 2 or 3 burnt exhaust valves.
    After grinding the starter for at least a minute it would finally catch and he’d rev it with that triple staccato misfire at least another minute or two before mercifully leaving for work.

    At 6.30 AM every day.

    He worked for a food distributor and was always offering to give us stuff which we politely declined..turns out he got sent up for embezzlement which nearly brought his employer to its financial knees.

    David Tracy over on the other site would have stayed awake nights dreaming about that rig…

  • avatar
    Luke42

    There’s a house in my neighborhood with an early-2000s Ford Expedition.

    Not my cup of tea, but it’s fine.

    The problem is that the tires on the thing have been deflated for most of the 3 years they’ve lived there. I’m tempted to march over and offer them a set of tires, just so I don’t have to look at the damn thing sitting on its rims all the time.

    To be fair, they do pump up the tires every few months. And I specifically did not want a HOA, because *I* am the one who’s most likely to have a half-finished automotive project in my driveway. [shrug]

    But, yeah, it’s almost worth buying them some [email protected] tires so I don’t have to look at it.

  • avatar
    Verbal

    I tend to be the neighborhood derelict vehicle nazi wherever I have lived. Cars that are parked on the street and haven’t moved for months or years, coated in filth, debris piling up underneath, tabs long expired. I phone them in to the city and the cops come and tag them. Then the owner has to do something with them.

    I don’t get why people keep a car that is clearly not running just sitting on the street indefinitely. Either fix it and drive it, or fix it and sell it, or call a scrapyard to tow it away.

  • avatar
    ToolGuy

    Most of the vehicles in my immediate neighborhood are well maintained. No HOA and I like it that way because sometimes I’m the weirdo doing unusual stuff.

    Many ‘outsider’ vehicles tend to stand out. The streets I’m near don’t go anywhere useful, so what are you doing here? (Makes Jack Byrnes “watching you” motion.)

    When the kids are home from college we have vehicles parked on the grass, but not in the front. We almost never park in the street, especially not overnight.

    Harley guy moved away. Next-door neighbor has a slightly-loud dual exhaust on his pickup, but that lets me keep track of him – grin.

    My noise issues are blower- and mower-related. Sometimes it’s tolerable. (One Saturday morning was lying in bed listening to the old neighbors – who we loved – try to keep their riding mower running. Walked outside and pointed to the defective seat switch – he thanked me.)

  • avatar
    STS_Endeavour

    In my condo complex there is this mid-2000’s Grand Marquis that looks like a total piece. Both the bumpers are munched, the paint is falling off on the hood, the roof, the trunk… Basically everywhere. The roof has a rust spot as well. Plus the owner decided it would be cute to put Gravity Falls stickers on all the windows which look childish, as does the Jabba the Hutt Beany Baby in the rear window (who does that anymore – didn’t that fad die in the 90’s?). The car’s only non-offensive add-on is the Israel Kamakawiwo’ole sticker. A matching set of Michelin Premiers suggest the car gets some mechanical love, but I’d sure hate having to park next to that eye-sore.

    In other words – I have the ugliest car in my condo complex.

  • avatar
    -Nate

    Gol – Durned KIDS ! .

    Harrumph and other cranky old man noises .

    -Nate (be glad they didn’t paint the poor thing PURPLE)

  • avatar
    Garak

    I live in the woods, there’s no complaining busybodies.

  • avatar
    N8iveVA

    My neighbor parks his ’05 Mustang V6 convertible next to my Mustang (townhouse w/2 dedicated spots)and he’s got the 20″ rims with rubber band tires, slammed suspension, “Stalker” body kit, and a matte vinyl wrap that would be best described as the color of pollen, with carbon fiber vinyl wrap inserts. I appreciate he’s a “car guy” too and takes care of it, but it’s a bit much for the eyes to take in.

  • avatar
    Boff

    There’s a house with a flat-black-wrapped Hummer H2, F30 328i with peeling flat-black plastidip on the rims, a C5 Vette, and murdered-out Camry — all with farty exhausts, all with autotragic trannies, all driven too fast through our leafy neighbourhood by semi-employed millennials. The exhausts on my cars are obnoxious too, but in a good way dammit.

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