Posts filed under ‘notorious opponents of exactitude’
Oh! I know there are others that share my thinking but could it be they are afraid of the “ducking/cucking stool ” which censors our opening of our mouths ( locally and nationally)? As if the bad mouthing, concrete crashing Neanderthals weren’t enough of a deterrent.
I have seen it too many times over the years of advocacy and I seem to have come away from those years half drowned ,soaking wet and getting more and more weary of trying – life here can do that to you. So I now find myself walking away, not raising the volunteering hand – and have left most of the “community” – I just don’t fit in .
As I “escape” from Lorain and the world into the realm Roku watching murder, mayhem and mystery I supplement with programs such as “Escape to the County” and the land of my birth where there are still pockets of the idyll and people looking to find their dream in the country.
It was during one such viewing this morning and the town of Leominister
http://www.leominster.co.uk/ and the story of Jenny Pipes (1809) the last woman to be legally ducked. She pronounced a “scold” by her community and the magistrate passed sentence
“In the common law of crime in England and Wales, a common scold was a type of public nuisance—a troublesome and angry woman who broke the public peace by habitually arguing and quarrelling with her neighbours. The Latin name for the offender, communis rixatrix, appears in the feminine gender and makes it clear that only women could commit this crime.
….. being placed in a chair and submerged in a river or pond. Although rarely prosecuted it remained on the statute books in England and Wales until 1967.
Francois Maximilian Misson, a French traveller and writer, recorded the method used in England in the early 18th century:The way of punishing scolding women is pleasant enough.(ED NOTE spoken like a true man )
They fasten an armchair to the end of two beams twelve or fifteen feet long, and parallel to each other, so that these two pieces of wood with their two ends embrace the chair, which hangs between them by a sort of axle, by which means it plays freely, and always remains in the natural horizontal position in which a chair should be, that a person may sit conveniently in it, whether you raise it or let it down. They set up a post on the bank of a pond or river, and over this post they lay, almost in equilibrio, the two pieces of wood, at one end of which the chair hangs just over the water. They place the woman in this chair and so plunge her into the water as often as the sentence directs, in order to cool her immoderate heat.
Jenny Pipes came back from her ducking still “scolding” and her claim to fame of telling it like it was has outlasted the magistrate. http://www.jennypipes.org.uk/
“the idea of ducking was to curb the tongue of the offender; the ducking to continue until the culprit either gives up or was exhausted”
Of course where there is a pond there is also pond scum and “ducking the scold” does disrupt that “gathering and rising to the top” if only for a little while. I have noticed the pond scum usually multiplies!
I have seen the “cucking stool” happening (metaphorically speaking) locally so many times and THAT Lorain is one of the problems and the why the view we have is of this (rehabbed????) “cottage”
To those who have been ducked, and lived to walk away and tell the tale _ you will be missed by those that got wet with you
-to those that have returned to the bank of the pond to join the crowd – it is understandable-
-to those that keep trying -may it only be your feet getting wet…..
for those of you still “piping up’ like Jenny Piper and facing the wrath of the duckers and the chair I will have a towel waiting for you and a different sort of chair in front of the TV!
Every time I read of accusations on facebook , social media etc I do so with a wariness. I wouldn’t have had a few years ago. In my last post
I mentioned our 11 months of hell caused by an elderly neighbor who truly believed her accusations. Before her dementia she had been a good neighbor, wanting to help with the community and did so , her talent as an artist used more than once with neighborhood events .
The family made no effort to help and so this neighbor literally took down her favorite tree, glass blocked her windows and put up fences . She was scared , frightened and alone in the fact she did not get the help she needed and that fact rippled through our lives. Due to her actions, we could not help – our attorney forbade any contact- so we had to leave her to her own terrifying nights until at last, after being found by another neighbor wandering the street in her night attire, something was finally done. The damage to our family was already done-
I wrote about that time on another blog The WoM Blog 10 years ago – I would like you to read this tale of accusation – 11 months of proving innocence- this could happen to you –and the years between have not erased the helplessness and yes anger at the family we felt.
J’Accuse- The Cost of Innocence
It is 6:00 am. in Lorain – Do you know where your attorney is?
John Paul Sartre got it right when he stated in his play – No Exit
”HELL IS OTHER PEOPLE!”
The accuser and the accusations:
A neighbor, elderly and alone (who fully believed in her accusations) and since she wasn’t a known trouble maker or on anyone’s radar was totally believable- so the complaints made to the various authorities seemed reasonable.
1. a male neighbor throwing things at her house
2. male footprints in the freshly fallen snow leading to her front door from the neighbors
3. weapons being hidden between the houses
4. a male neighbor exposing himself through the fence
5. a neighbor opening the fire hydrants on the street
6. a male neighbor pointing a gun at her through the back door
7. a male neighbor hiding in the shrubs
8. intruders in her basement
9. intruders inside her house
10. up on her roof at night
11. neighbors cutting her phone lines
So I would ask you – you are the Lorain Police Department – you are getting these calls from an elderly woman, all alone- starting in June and carrying through to May of the next year. You send patrol cars -you check – you wake people from a sound sleep at all times of the night to make sure they are home and not harassing an elderly woman.
You respond when a citizen complains, it is documented. The elderly woman tells the rest of the neighborhood what it happening to her, enlisting their aid. The “family” of the accuser calls the accused family “perverts”-among other insulting remarks.
ARE YOU FEELING SYMPATHY AND OUTRAGE FOR THIS POOR WOMAN?
The REST of the story :
1. the things being thrown -tennis balls- coming across and into her yard as the kids in a neighboring home are playing ball.
2. footprints in the snow- the mail carrier coming from one house delivering to another
3. weapons ( supposedly being hidden to hit the neighbors on the head) – fallen tree limbs from her own tree
4. THE DE -FENCE NO. 4 -in the Accusations list
Oh! and the “exposing of a male part of the anatomy through the fence (from two properties away I might add)
It was the first accusation – I remember it so well another neighbor phoned,
NB. where is your husband?
ME: He is at the store –
NB: Oh good Sally phoned to say he was putting his penis through (another neighbors fence) ( two doors away)
ME: WHAT???? Is this some sort of a joke??
NB: No she is claiming your husband is sticking his penis through a knot hole in the fence….
AND SO IT BEGAN –
The elderly lady was fixated with the knothole and the penis and called out the police on another fine summer day. I asked the officer who was a little sharp with me at first to please come and look at the fence. He reluctantly did so – I showed him the knot hole and its position in the fence and then I said
“officer if you can put your penis through that hole I will personally put the handcuffs on my husband “
A little grin did flicker across his face as he remarked ”
” No thank you ma’am I am more endowed than to fit that opening.
I then took him to the other side of the fence where we have a pond. and where in order to expose oneself you would have to lay on your side half in the water.
The officer wrote up a report which was pretty laughable- the Chronicle Telegram and their reporter saw the police report, thankfully we were spared our names in the article – Shawn Foucher wrote the article : If The Fence Don’t Fit You Have To Acquit!
5. Opening Fire Hydrants – The fire dept. was called by the accuser, and the LFD were very irate, it was in fact the Lorain Water Dept. as they had a water line burst on Oberlin Avenue. So when the Fire Dept then turned off the gushing fire hydrant the water dept. guys from the Utilities Dept came running down the street waving their arms as they were now having to deal with gushing water .
6. The gun , after three such calls and reports it turns out, when questioned further, that the “gun” was actually a “RAY GUN” and this wonderful invention (invented apparently by the accused) could make her steel back door disappear for 8 seconds at a time and she had to blink to get it back!
7. The shrub – was an over 70 foot maple tree, which not only did the accused manage to climb, in the dark – but did so in a DRESS. (ouch!)
8. The intruders (now there were two) the accused and his wife- apparently getting in through the vent in the glass block window
9. Picture this if you will. The police are called the “intruders” (we now have two again) are in the house, armed . One officer arrives, he has called for back up however there is a serious problem elsewhere other officers are tied up on another call. With caution the officer calls to the intruders to come out of the closet. Nothing, silence- weapon at the ready he throws open the door to a closet???? no one
Ma’am are you sure they went in here?
What is the matter with you ? Can’t you see them- they are hiding under that lampshade!
Call for back up was cancelled!
10. Up on the roof (raccoons and squirrels using her roof as a route from one tree to another )
11. The phone lines were cut as a truck making deliveries to More for Less caught the overhead lines and ripped them down.
NOTE – pretty funny isn’t it??? but these plausible complaints were harrowing to us at the time and terrifying to her – AND WE HAD TO PROVE EVERYDAY – EVERY COMPLAINT THAT WE WERE INNOCENT!!!!
The EFFECT😦 Due to these accusations):
1. Hundreds of dollars were spent by the accused on lawyers letters, dealing with the accusations, building higher fences . Family members of the accuser making insulting and damning remarks (rather than seeing the problem- again lawyers letters)
2. Months of harassment, being woken from a sound sleep at all hours of the night with the police at the door responding to the accusations. Not being comfortable and able to relax in your OWN home.
3. Documenting your every move for over a year. Because when someone makes an accusation that you were doing something at a certain time you better have proof that you were elsewhere and have a reliable witness.
So you keep a daily/hourly diary, where you were, who was with you, if you go to the store alone -you keep the time stamped receipt. You cannot even go into your back yard without a witness or companion. Your reputation is shot! Your life becomes about PROVING YOUR INNOCENCE every day, just because “J’Accuse”.
4. The embarrassment is bad enough but the stress takes its toll, infact this living on the accusatory knife-edge ( and people will say – hmmmm where there is smoke…..) effects you emotionally and physically you become ill. You can’t sleep, you are on the defensive, your life is turned upside down and the lives of your family, you are angry, bewildered and hurt .
YOUR HOME, YOUR SANCTUARY BECOMES A PRISON
Everyday you have to prove innocence because someone made an accusation, that on the face of it, was believable. You spend your days “explaining” and your nights waiting for the next phone call or knock on the door wanting to know what you are doing and where you have been .
It is only when you look into the “rest of the story” that you realize that as ridiculous as these accusations really were the suffering, expense and the toll on a family -wasn’t funny.
AND NOW – the hedges are grown deliberately- so the daughter and husband who had their say as I was screamed at by the “construction king ” and ironically wanting MY HELP in their “estate court case” can no longer peer into my garden- let them inspect the alley–
You see the grandfather also had issues before he passed only at that time it was another neighbor who bore the brunt of his “visions” – those ” good ” neighbors eventually moved…… So before accusations are made – and believed remember sometimes all is not so cut and dried…………………………THIS PROVING OF INNOCENCE CAN HAPPEN TO ANYONE ……….
In one very serious instance it was NOT because of what I wrote and the target was not initially me. An elderly woman – a neighbor- was suffering from mental issues- and left to it by her family- her weapon of choice was the Lorain Police Dept . Eleven months of hell for us and her. I wrote about that time on the old WoM Blog. I will reprise that post.
A few days ago, once again, I was accused and accosted by a foul mouthed and obscene rant- threatening behavior – a male face , puffed up and shouting in rage, whilst his wife and his mother looked on.
Also, looking on and having their say – their neighborhood “friends”. As I listened to what was being shouted at me by a young man, whose command of the English language was grounded in obscenity and filth, I looked into the face of the woman , the daughter of that elderly mother. The mother, who had been trapped in her own mind and whose peculiar visions had caused so many months of concern to this family and the neighbors. We had the added expense of lawyers letters, out- reach to the family members by LPD etc. had failed to get the elderly lady help.
In the end the lady was found wandering the streets in her night clothes and the LPD and Social Services stepped in. The family members had done very little to help the mother or the neighbors. ( I have all the documentation, from that time, the diaries we had to keep- it went on and on for 11 months.)
I found it ironic, since they( the daughter and her husband) moved into the mother’s house they had wanted MY help. The daughter had their attorney contact me a few months ago wanting ME to testify on their behalf as to the conduct of the sister with regard to the mother .
Maybe they had their nose out of joint ( she and her husband) because I told their attorney that our own attorney had told us not to have anything to do with any of that family ever and that the family, in my opinion, left their mother in a pitiable state scared of the visions she thought were real.
In the last year the weapon of choice by “irate accusers” has been the Lorain Building Dept. The Lorain Building Dept. who have been written about as well, critically, for many years, on this blog –
“Administrations, councils come and go but the Building Dept is a common thread and the glut of decrepit housing/buildings in this city lays firmly at the door of lack of enforcement for many years”
Do they too have an axe to grind – one has to wonder? The Building Dept. under Richard Klinar claim they will not get into neighborhood disputes, have been manipulated to do so ,in my opinion, at least TWICE in a year!!!! I am apparently “RE- inspected” for issues that were non- violations in the first two inspections! This complaint driven dept. should, imho, switch to zone inspections and not just drive by outrageous violations because no one complained??? to get to the petty ones.( Oh! and in Lorain a rolled roof on a pitched roof is legal- how about that slum lords- no longer will you have to put up a real roof!!! You can exchange the old blue for the new black)
And it has continued, not only effecting my property but others, as the rushing to file petty retribution complaints in the “alley” has recently happened .
Let me state here for the record I have never filed a “formal complaint” with Building, Planning and Housing- I have written on my blog about issues faced but I haven’t filed any formal complaints.
I have been accused of so doing. Do these holier than thou self righteous – do no wrong think I would be the only one objecting to their placement of construction/ commercial vehicles and travel trailers.
No sorry ! there are others who do not wish to live in a construction parking lot and look at rv’s on the grass. But apparently according to “he of the foul mouth rant” –
“Nobody fu#king cares this is a fu#king hood. YOU are the only one that fu#king cares….. you fu#king bitch”…. this is fu#king Lorain
yelled at the top of his voice . This wasn’t the first time, he yelled obscenities from his parent’s front porch three weeks earlier for the whole street to hear- and hear it they did!
Well at the risk of more concrete through the window , or worse, I will not be silenced. The act of spewing obscene venom at me for at least 10 minutes, aggression and veiled threats apart from the label of
“fu#king c$nt” … I am going to blog about you … you shamed me on your fu#king blog”.. I am gonna park my fu#king vehicles in front of your fu#king house
( such a mature way to deal with his anger – makes a mother proud apparently) )…
and you fu#king bitch put your husband in hospital”
as I walked away . His parting shot was he was going to run for city council- seems I am the catalyst to get people involved in local government 😉
I will continue writing. I will not be cowered by the lack of intelligent and civilized behavior. Little did they know as the tirade continued it was being witnessed by a neutral individual; of course there are now cameras as well .
Of course, I wished he had gotten rid of it years ago- but it has now become like the downspout named “Don” a matter of principle.
Three times we have been inspected in two years – 2014 on a zone inspection ( which we passed)- then the “Dye’ diatribe and the insistence we were inspected (2015) ( using her position on the Design Review Board) and even she was insulting about the boat – and the Lorain Building Dept. responded very quickly – no less than 4 working days- to find the boat in compliance then – the weeds at that time belonged to the City of Lorain 😉 and the next door lot
…..are you hiding your junk boat?… My roots go back further in this town more than you riding the boat over to ellis island. is that the boat in your back yard…..
and included in a filthy email sent by another of the “posse of putrid language”
“your back yard have and old fu#king boat” who he did suggest further in his tirade “what you need is I real man to fu#k your fat ass pleople of lorain when you get a clomplain from the city is this woman going around sucking the city’s departments di#k”
NOTE: do you see a language pattern here – such brilliance and command of debating skills 🙂
AGAIN THE BOAT!!!!!
We have been in compliance with the “boat” for years……
Underneath the tarp is a Chrysler Sport Satellite 15′ and original 70 hp motor
photo source http://www.ralphsrapidtransit.com/71SprtSat.html
Chrysler boats were far ahead of their time. The full foam flotation that was standard on all Chrysler boats, later became federally mandatory on all
You can read about the Chrysler Marine Division here
A quick internet search to see if this boat was crap or a classic ( as my husband swears it is) turned up prices that were in at least one case more than we paid for it and the average price was about $400 less than we paid for it all those years ago.
It is now deemed a “classic”
So the boat and me are staying put for now – but just incase anyone else decides to use the Lorain Building Inspectors as their weapon of choice here is the evidence of compliance
But the weeds referred to ( all duly planted by said husband for my mother’s recipes) and those morning glories to cover the chain link fence (which I hate) – allows viewing by those who wish to find fault!!!! – and that is going to change, if I have my way………. But maybe I should save the city time and money and have my property inspected by them once a year to make sure we are in compliance- save them the paperwork and time !
to be continued……. J’ Accuse –
The 501C3 of which I am Co – Chair ( Charleston Village Society Inc) ( if you have been reading this blog has been around since the late 1980’s and a 501C3 since 1993) was invited to meeting on grant applications etc. for historic preservation funding
CVSI is completely reliant upon donations, cash and in kind. We are an ALL volunteer organization.
Introductions were made in that crowded room ( they weren’t expecting such a large turnout)- boding well for historic preservation one would think. The list of communities with “Historic Preservation Districts” included Lorain- I don’t believe 90 percent of those attending “knew” where those are – BUT I can tell you where at least one district is found. The state designation encompasses the area of Lorain’s oldest neighborhood and the area Charleston Village Society oversees ( AN ALL VOLUNTEER ORGANIZATION) IN PLACE BEFORE THE STATE DESIGNATION.
My optimism changed quickly to DEJAVU – as the power point presentation got started. Wait a minute! I have seen the same sort photos, different years and different locations , the same power point presentation , even the same jokes when people filled Lorain City Council Chambers in 1993.
The historical rhetoric continued -how to apply – what you need to do, what the benefits are etc. Yes, same spiel I heard nearly a quarter of a century ago. We were excited then, the state was excited there was already a “community based preservation group”( Charleston Village Society Inc) – fully involved with city leaders and the county . The speech I heard today by JEFF SIEGLER
DIRECTOR OF REVITALIZATION
Jeff attended Ohio Wesleyan University where he received his bachelors degree in economics management. While working for a historic tax credit developer In Richmond, Virginia Jeff completed his Masters of Urban and Regional Planning at Virginia Commonwealth University with a concentration in urban revitalization. Prior to becoming the Director of Revitalization at Heritage Ohio, Jeff worked as the Director of the Lancaster Special Improvement District and Main Street Lancaster.
I had heard in essence heard before – you see we had his predecessor of long ago Kevin Kuchenbecker “talked” us- the BOD of mainstreetlorain”- into joining a Main Street program that was unwieldy , in 1999/ 2000 and was not designed for the area , Lorain is an entitlement city- which means we can’t get the same benefits non entitlement cities can access ( Funny that was never brought up when we were being “courted”)- “mainstreetlorain” organization 1996 had already encompassed an area far bigger than what a Main Street usually covers and I and my Co – Chair Rich Robbin did bring that up and told
not to worry it would be handled!
. Oh the problems were surmountable we were informed ( only they weren’t)
Maybe a time to revisit that piece of history as Charleston Village Society Inc was a founding member of mainstreetlorain and on the board of the Main Street program in Lorain and at one time I was a volunteer director for 7 months so the organization didn’t go belly up. Main Street ( Lorain) eventually became Lorain Growth Corporation http://www.loraingrowth.com/ .
I have been involved up to my eyes in Lorain
but it was almost insulting to see that nearly a quarter of a century on these “historical preservation ” way forwards are stuck back in the last century and can only regurgitate the rhetoric
a healthy down -town has to have a healthy neighborhood and vice versa-
now what decade in the past was that ever mentioned??? ( sarcasm ) ,
you have to work together with local officials
To people who have, over the decades , been there done that, worked with 8 administrations, countless number of council people , not to mention police chiefs, fire chiefs civic organizations, educational institutions, we are not any farther ahead than when we met in the meeting room of the Broadway Building with Heritage Ohio in 1999/2000 and in 1993 when we went under the architectural review. In fact, we have lost a lot of significant homes and buildings and our downtown- well what can I say Channel Five said it all
So let us see what benefits we, as a neighborhood ,have derived from being in a state recognized district for these many years.
Oh and yes one with a hairnet controversy -Broadway Building, another with promises not fulfilled as the rain comes down – Eagles Building – look at them now (with fresh eyes).
How can that be? What doesn’t seem to be told or at least made very clear is that IF PRIVATE MONEY IS USED to rehab , tear down, paint a building pink there is nothing “Historical Preservation” can do!!!
The only time they have teeth is when “public monies” are used at any level. Have ANY of the historically significant homes in this neighborhood been cherished by the “Historians from Ohio”? We can’t even find funding to preserve the headstones of Lorain’s founding families in the little cemetery on 6th.
( not historically significant except for maybe the window connection and the artisan who came to Lorain )
Captain Wilford’s Home
There is the Captain Wilford House, which housed the Captain his wife Fanny Gillmore of the Gillmore Civil War letters
and we haven’t even touched on the rest of the Gillmore family although you can find the series here .
Just take a walk and look at that house now.
Admiral Kings’ birth place – you may remember Admiral King
( Gov. Kasich sent a lovely proclamation when we designated the “tribute site across from his birthplace Gov Kasich wished him well in his retirement – hmmmmm not sure his office staff knew the history of the Commander of the US Fleet (WW2) as he had been dead 50 years – can you retire from death??? We informed them of their error and we received another proclamation but without the fancy gold seal 😉
The little historic park- the earliest surviving green space in the county 1807 saved from condos ( you know the importance of a public square statement) not by Ohio but by a bunch of “history boneheads of Charleston Village Society” – history boneheads – designated by Editor John Cole (Morning Journal)
The only thing I can see we benefit from in being a state preservation district is the fact if public monies are used in our neighborhood to rehab then there are standards to be met eg. windows unless the house is historically insignificant and when the city or country needs to demo a property we ( CVSI) are usually asked to provide a letter stating why we as an organization ,whose mission statement includes preservation of the neighborhood, don’t object – see an example file here
CVSI Gow House
Then to be told by the speakers, Oh it is a local issue, get ordinances passed, accountability is local and you need to take before and after pictures etc. etc. well that was it- accountability HA!
I had to leave before I regurgitated…… I have 25 years for publicizing before and after and before and it has become “history’!
The Charleston Village Society Float in the international parade and the big blue box from 1992
Ah and 24 years later ……https://thatwoman.wordpress.com/2016/05/17/money-where-your-mouth-is-part-one/
Time to get off the soap box.
How is it that “I” the discharging dangling- donspout” have to be connected in 6 days in the middle of winter
and my neighbor up the street, who has been “hanging” around for 10 years was up for debate on council floor and
River. “It doesn’t send a very strong message to the rest of the community.”
City inspectors for months have been waiting for action on the building, Ritenauer said.
City inspectors viewed the site and listed multiple violations during a review Sept. 25, 2012. A notice of violation was mailed out the following month.
In February officials from owner Spitzer Great Lakes Ltd. Co. asked for more time to make repairs due to weather. The city granted the deadline extension to June 30 and stated the property would be reinspected on Monday.
It was unclear if city officials went out yesterday or exactly what enforcement action the city will take.
However, violations still are visible on the building and it appeared no work has been done, Ritenauer said.
Some of the violations were aesthetic, such as growth of weeds and faded paint.
But the building also has broken windows and its parking garage is “in poor structural condition,” the inspection report stated.
“Columns show signs of deterioration,” the report stated. “Repair required or provide proof from structural engineer indicating otherwise.”
“That parking garage is falling apart right now,” Ritenauer said. “It is unsafe.”
“It’s a safety risk,” Schuster said.
The building’s facades facing Broadway and Erie Avenue also are in need of repair. The building has an exterior net around it.
Ritenauer and Schuster said they would support any reasonable plan to restore the site.
“If it comes down or if it’s fixed, something has to happen,” Ritenauer said.
Then we waited for the development bus to stop at “Hairnet and Time”
AND we waited….. but apparently the wheels ( like the façade on my friend the Broadway Building) came off the bus
“About a year and a half ago, Spitzer entered into an agreement with ReTown to turn the building into market-priced apartments,” he said. “From there, the project was awarded a state historic tax credit of $440,203 as well as several federal tax credits, totaling a couple of million dollars.”
Giardini said that’s where the wheels came off.
Who is the “Driver” in all this wondering “Donspout wants to know”? You see my owner “fixed ” me in the allotted time- responsibility for one’s own “dangles ” comes to mind!!!!
And the Notorious Opponent of Exactitude Award goes to Spitzer / Giardini