If Arizona ever becomes any kind of model for America, watch the hell out. Spend enough time here, and you’ll come to understand phenomena like the Maricopa County sheriff, the governor who stuck her finger in the president’s face, Tucson schools dropping Mexican-American Studies, and a whole lot more. I know it’s wrong to tar the whole state for the sins of however few, but damn, do they ever make it easy.
I’m here in this particular mobile home retirement community (i.e., trailer park)—home of the alleged “enviable 55+ retirement lifestyle”—to do whatever I can to get my 90-year-old mother’s double-wide cleaned up and sold. (For those of you who haven’t been following the Helen Chronicles, she’s in a secure memory unit staring into space while slowly dying, and I’m successor trustee.) If only it were as “simple” as that. Three days ago, for example, the local property owners association went beyond the usual “weed violation” threats and told me I have 30 days to get Helen’s trailer painted… so today I visited the office and explained that my mother was dying, her house is on the market (“as-is”), we don’t have money to spare, a potential buyer might not like the color I’d choose, etc., etc., and could they please give us a little consideration?
Hahaha. Needless to say, things did not go well. Considering that this is a place where fat white guys ride around on golf carts with big American flags, I guess this long-haired New Mexico freak did well enough just not getting lynched. I can’t for the life of me understand why any normal person would want to live here though. Oh, right.
[These images explained below...]
I tried mightily to appeal to their humanity, pleading poverty and all the rest:
“Can’t you at least wait a few months until the house is sold?”
“No, because the violation is in process.”
“How much would you fine me if we can’t get this done?”
“That’s up to the violations committee.”
“But what kinds of fines have been levied in the past?”
“It could be $10 a day, $50 a week, I just don’t know.”
“But on my way over here, I saw plenty of houses in worse shape than my mother’s…”
“Well, I’m sure they’ve received a violation notice, too.”
“This doesn’t make any sense. Don’t you take into account the family situation, a homeowner dying in a nursing home, the finances, and all of that?”
“The violation is in process, there’s nothing I can do.”
“Well, WHAT ABOUT ALL THE RACIST SLEEPING MEXICAN STATUES?!?”
“What sleeping Mexican statues?”
[Bending my head down and folding my arms] “They’re everywhere!”
“Those? What’s racist about that?”
Whereupon I scooped up my papers and departed. I guess the only Hispanos they encounter here are scrubbing out their bathrooms. I know, you might not think the things are so offensive. But what if Hispanic families here had little statues of fat white guys riding golf carts sitting in their yards? I wish they did!
The images above are some that I shot in about 10 minutes riding around this place. I didn’t have to cover more than a few blocks. As a special bonus, the last one is a little different and might mess you up in Taos even worse. Same cultural ignorance, though.
No related posts.