Home 'n' hearth

By - 7/23/08 - 11:30 pm

Carolyn reports that when she got a rain barrel to collect water for a vegetable garden, she had to figure out how to prevent mosquitoes from breeding in it. And rather than use chemicals or BT, she invested in some goldfish, figuring they would eat any mosquito larvae:

... This has worked really well. The fish, which were previously designated as food for larger pet fish, have 55 gallons of space, both fresh bugs and dried fish food for dinner, and no predators. It's a bit boring in there, but I'm guessing it's suitable for a fish-style attention span. They've grown appreciably in the past couple of months. I think they're happy. At least they haven't complained. Or died. Yet. ...

By - 7/17/08 - 10:16 pm

David Prior reports what happens when one of your dogs gets loose and decides to go after a skunk, which does what skunks do, after which the dog runs right into the house. You know it's pretty bad when National Grid shows up because the downstairs neighbor called to report what he thought was a gas leak.

By - 7/17/08 - 12:10 am

Maybe the guy just couldn't wait to get inside and the front porch was oh so convenient:

... To Nick's great relief, the man was wearing underwear, but his relief was quickly replaced by horror as the man whipped himself out of his briefs and proceeded to pee off the front porch in broad daylight. ...

By - 7/15/08 - 8:43 am

Are rarely a good thing, especially when one of them forces his way into your place.

By - 7/9/08 - 5:30 pm

Mance01 reports her apartment is overrun by like a million baby spiders:

... So, I'm sitting on the couch, holding a can of bug spray, jumping a mile everytime a strand of hair brushes my shoulder. And my foot itches. I assume it's a spider bite.

So, if I disappear for another month, it's probably a safe bet that I'm cocooned somewhere in the house. Send help.

By - 6/29/08 - 7:53 pm
Sutherland Road, yikes

Brad Kayal lives on Sutherland Road in Brighton, which, you may recall, is where several thousand gallons of mineral oil leaked out of an Nstar electrical conduit this past Thursday and wound up in the Muddy River on the other side of Brookline.

Kayal took the photos here to show what the street has been like since that incident. He writes:

Have you ever thought to yourself, "I wonder what it's like to live in a strip mine?"

If so, I welcome anyone to swap apartments with me because since that pipe/conduit/whatever broke and leaked all that oil over a week ago Sutherland Rd. in Brighton has become one impressive construction operation. They've dug 15' holes up and down the block, erected wood shacks (that they're pumping nitrogen into), rented themselves some tents, got some cranes, dumpsters, port-a-johns, and they have been working non-stop , around the clock, since last Thursday.

Sutherland Road, yikes, redux
By - 6/28/08 - 10:53 am

Burly construction guys jackhammering at 7 a.m., no water at all and crazy neighbors who, when not busy breaking their windows, leave kitty litter all over the apartment stairs, can leave a person an unwashed, unhappy urban-dweller.

Via Allston City Limits.

By - 6/4/08 - 12:26 pm

Any experts out there in ID-ing the poison stuff? Anyone know an individual who can ID and eliminate it in West Roxbury/Rozzi area?? Thanks!

By - 5/9/08 - 9:11 am

Some painter took a look at our house, determined we are in immediate need of his services and left his business card, which has a bullet list of his qualifications, including:

Serious and guaranteed

Because, you know, those grinning, laff-a-minute contractors who burst out of their VW Bugs with their 20 employees in greasepaint are just so annoying (but he's right - the old manse does need painting, so if you know of any good house painters in Greater Roslindale, I'm all ears).

By - 4/10/08 - 8:02 am

When last we discussed Upton Street, it was to point to a South End News story about neighbors bemoaning the ruination of their tiny street by a Pine Street Inn proposal to convert three houses that had been used as transitional homes for people with problems into permanent housing for them.

Now the News reports:


By - 4/9/08 - 12:08 pm

Jade Sylvan reports:

Someone broke into my apartment yesterday and stole my computer, my phone, my camera, and my whiskey. Pretty much all I had, they took. The worst part is I had about 25 or so unbacked-up pages of my new novel on there. Pages I just hadn't gotten around to backing up yet. They were really good. ...

By - 4/8/08 - 2:29 pm

Ms. Bart sits on her condo board and her report on recent issues is like something out of Del Boca Vista, phase II:

... When I took out the trash on Sunday afternoon, I saw a bag dead center on top of the dumpster. I tried to climb up to toss it in the trash, but the dumpster was wet with rain. My neighbor (and employee of the management company) Wally got the bag down. Rather than toss it immediately into the dumpster, he opened it to see if the owner could be ascertained. (Our dumpster isn't exactly difficult to use. It's got sliding doors about four feet off the ground and is in excellent repair. This improper disposal was on purpose.) Well, the trash had unshredded paperwork in it. The trash belonged to Captain Recycle, a rabblerouser who once ordered a giant recycling dumpster for the community without asking anyone. His fiancee performed a 'go recycling - let's save the Earth' cheer at our last annual owner's meeting. He purposely, improperly dumped his garbage (in a manner that could have resulted in trash all over our communal gardens) AND HE DIDN'T RECYCLE!!!!! ...

By - 4/3/08 - 8:14 pm

Tom Fulry reports on an interesting discussion this afternoon with an elderly neighbor who'd come over to alert him to an NStar "service upgrade" tonight:

... I pulled out my blackberry to set an alarm.

"Don't point that device at me! I don't want to catch the death rays!"

I thought she was joking. I pointed it at my crotch, laughing that I can feel the waves penetrating me.

"Stop! You'll kill all your swimmers. You should not carry that radioactive brick anywhere near your down there," she said. ...

By - 3/18/08 - 8:35 pm

NOTE: The post has been removed from public view, so I've taken out the link.

Marcus was the road this morning, about 15 minutes after leaving his home, when his wife called to ask about weekend plans.

... We were talking when I heard the dogs start to bark in the background and she said, "Shit, someone is in here, I just heard the front door close." I told her to make a bee line for the safe down in the basement as she hung up to call 911. ...

By - 3/18/08 - 9:31 am

Ezra found himself yesterday dealing with conundrums involving both.

By - 3/12/08 - 3:47 pm

The Boston Zoning Commission voted unanimously today to limit apartments to no more than four unrelated college students.

By - 3/11/08 - 3:58 pm

Philip Greenspun comes clean:

... In an effort to become the consummate condo-dwelling yuppie, I replaced my 10-year-old (mid-priced) Whirlpool dishwasher, whose cleaning power was beginning to fade, with a $1200 Bosch. The new Bosch leaves food on silverware and dishes and can't clean pots or pans. The Whirlpool, at age 10, did a far better job. Compared to the Whirlpool when new (throw in any dirty dish, without scraping or rinsing, and pots with all kinds of stuck-on crud), the Bosch is a joke. ...

By - 2/28/08 - 3:58 pm

Chris Lovett reports on a meeting of the mayor's Foreclosure Intervention Team yesterday morning:

"We're not as bad as '93 and '94, but we never want to get there," said the mayor. "And all the predictions we get are the worst is yet to come."

Lovett also provides a map showing properties which not only have been foreclosed but for which the owning banks have been unable to find buyers.