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The Duck and the Meercat

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  • The Duck and the Meercat

    Firstly, hello to everyone here and thanks to the organisers of this site for providing such a great forum for us people unfortunate enough to have a Neighbour from Hell.

    My own story started with a bang a month ago. I live at the end of a row of private terraced houses in a private road and, for the past 7 years, it has been a wonderful place to live. The neighbours (without exception) were all well behaved, friendly, civil and respectful of the neighbourhood. There was (and still is) no problem with children, you never heard blaring music, nobody caused a disturbance in the middle of the night. It was a great, safe place for a single 30-something woman to live (me!).

    That all changed when the Meercat moved into the street. Actually, to be accurate, it started 3 days before he officially moved in. We residents knew something was wrong when we discovered two radiators, a large amount of bricks and some car wheel trims suddenly dumped in the hedge bordering the communal garage block next to my house. It turned out that the Meercat had gained entry to the house before completion and had been carrying out some works which included the removal of the radiators. He couldn’t be bothered to go to the tip (about half a mile away) so just piled the stuff in the hedge. He also brought with him some fairly large Koi Carp which he carried in in huge polystyrene containers. These containers were broken up and stuffed behind the garages. The weather has done its bit and chunks of the boxes now litter all the hedges and front gardens of the street.

    Several neighbours asked him about the rubbish since he had been seen dumping. Those neighbours were told to “F-off” and had the door shut in their faces. The rubbish was removed by us and we all realised we had a potential NFH on our hands.

    The day the Meercat moved in was the day my life (and others) turned to hell. I arrived home from work to find that, not only could I not use the driveway leading to the garages (because the Meercat had parked across it) but I also could not get to my garage as the Meercat had parked another of his cars (he has two and a red Escort van) on the driveway in such a way that I (and anyone else trying to get to their garage) would have to drive straight across my lawn. The van had been left in the communal visitor space. His own garage (and the space in front) was empty. Feeling a bit bemused and putting it down to him being new to the area, I went up to the Meercat’s house to ask him to move his cars. To cut a long story short, instead of apologising and moving the cars (as a nice person would do), the Meercat folded his arms, leant against his door and asked in a really slow voice like I was thick or someting “Well where do you suppose I park then little lady?” (Yes, he’s American, from Florida apparently judging by the wealth of Stars and Stripes and “Florida-and-F*****g-Proud” stickers he has painted and stuck all over his vehicles. I said it wasn’t a matter of where he parked but he was obviously blocking off the garages and access to my house (I nearly added a “DUH!” after it). After staring at me for a bit (and smacking his gum) he said he would move them “later, after dinner” and started to go back inside. Has anyone else experienced this kind of attitude? I kind of stood there not knowing what to do so, instead, I rang the bell again, he answered and I told him that I wasn’t prepared to wait for him to decide when to park sensibly and that I wanted his cars moved now (in any event he had jammed all the available parking spaces so I had no alternative parking option). I told him that I knew he was new and I didn’t want to fall out with him but I wanted to get my car put away and get myself some dinner. All the time he’s smirking at me and the next thing out of his mouth pretty much summed up what the future held. He said that he didn’t give a damn if he fell out with me or anyone else since he had just come from an area where he had raised so much hell, he’d made 4 of his neighbours move. A little “Brit-b*tch” like me wasn’t going to cause him any problems and, if I had anything else to add I should “bring it on”.

    I dived into my immediate neighbours house where he gave me a large gin (I was shaking) and we waited to see if the Meercat would move his cars. After an hour, he did. He sauntered down to the car dressed in a t shirt with a picture of two stick men on the back. One of the stick men was lying crumped in blood and the other was stood over it in a victory stance. The one on the ground was holding a Canadian flag. The victory one was holding the Stars and Strips. Nice huh?. He wandered down to the car and stood there looking about while he smoked a fag. Then he flicked the fag onto my neighbours lawn and go in the car, started it up and moved it back. He then laid on the horn. He laid on the horn until I came out of my neighbour’s house. The idea was, you see, he would consent to unblocking the drive but, as soon as I’d moved my car in, he was going to park right back there again thank you very much. I put my car in the garage and hoped that I wouldn’t need it again that evening since it was effectively imprisoned.

    I’d had to drive over my lawn because of his other vehicle blocking the path.

    This has continued to happen and has affected the neighbours badly and everyone who has asked him to move has received the same treatment. We are all so shocked that someone so dreadfully antagonistic has moved in. We just don’t know how to deal with this.

    Aside from this we are now subjected to loud country and western music whenever he’s out in the garden. He can’t even have a garden without being intrusive it seems. Of all the ridiculous things to build in a garden 45 foot long and 18 feet wide he has chosen to build the biggest ornamental bridge you have ever seen. It stands at least 4 feet high in the centre and the Meercat has taken to standing on this bridge for hours, listening to the Dixie Chicks blasting out and staring around. That’s all he does: stare (that’s why we’ve called him the Meercat). We all have 5 foot fences and that has never been a problem with regard to privacy but now we have this plonker perched on this enormous bridge looking directly into everyone’s gardens. Even if you sit down he can still look down on you (and, by golly, he does! He makes a total point of looking at you). Everytime I go out in the garden he just stares at me. I was pruning back a pyracantha and he didn’t take his eyes off what I was doing for a minute. Have you any idea how intimidating that is and how nervous it makes you feel? He stared at my elderly neighbour for so long he went back in his house. He stared at the children behind his house for so long the mother came out and asked just what he found so interesting. He never answered, just took a long drag on his fag and kept on staring. She was unsettled as us and went back in the house.

    The final straw came on Tuesday evening. I was in my living room waiting for a friend to turn up when the Meercat appears outside my window. Exhaustingly, he’s not content with the music/attitude/parking/tipping but also wants to announce his presence by making his way to the garage by walking very slowly across all our front lawns and flower beds. Can you believe that? We all have footpaths. He has a footpath and using it would take approximately 5 seconds more to get where he’s going but, no, the Meercat must interfere with people even more by doing something that ordinary people just don’t do. It’s the first time I’d seen him do it but it explains the damage to my plants and the dents in my lawn which I’d put down to foxes. No body has EVER used the lawns in that way. My elderly neighbour said he often gets a start when the Meercat suddenly appears outside his window but he is too frightened to say anything.

    I wasn’t though! Ha ha!

    Despite the fact I’d already had a mouthful off him regarding the cars, I decided to ask him to stop his foot-dragging meandering across the lawns. My belief being that, if I didn’t tell him then, how soon before he started driving across the lawns? I’d also sort of figured he’d got away with stuff like that before because his attitude was so in your face and brazen that it does make people hesitant about making a stand. He comes across as a nutter and who wants to confront a nutter? Not my elderly neighbour, not the pregnant lady and her husband opposite and not the asian guy right next door to the Meercat who has already heard the work “Paki” from the direction of the Bridge over the River Koi. I, however, went out to see him and asked - incredibly politely - if he would “stop walking across the lawns and ...... “ I got interrupted at this point. The Meercat started shaking his head disgustedly like he was looking at a dog turd and, in a loud slow drawl, shouted over me repeatedly with “F***k off, F***k off, F***k off”. It was mad. It was like listening to a lunatic or the foul mouthed equivalent of someone sticking their fingers in their ears and going “la la la la la”. I was determined to finish what I was saying so did so, saying I wouldn’t tolerate such disrespect for me or my property, and turned to leave. As I did so, he stopped his swearing and hawked up a huge gob of phlegm which he spat at me. It missed, but only by about an inch.

    I then saw him walking back across the lawns (he took his time to pause and stare right through my window though) treading right through my bed of anemones, my neighbours little gold border shrubs and alpines on the way. When he got into his house, for some reason I cannot fathom, he decided to hang a huge Conferderate flag in his window.

    This is the position up to now and I’m left with mixed feelings of anxiety, fear and dreadful anger. His attitude suggests that he actually relishes the thought of causing trouble and my response isn’t exactly one of backing down. I’ve lived in the street for 7 years and it has been a great 7 years with no trouble. We all get on great. We all help each other out and look out for each other. Now we have this one moron causing so many problems. My view is that I’ll be damned if some pig-ignorant thug is going to do exactly as he pleases, stop me from using my car or anyone from visiting, ruin my quiet afternoons in the garden and trample on my property but how, exactly, do we deal with this? Talking to him obviously is pointless and the spitting incident is not one I can forget easily. He has a wife (she has a bizarre little waddling skip when she walks – hence we’ve called her The Duck) but she appears to be as mad as him. She often stands on her front steps calling in her 4 cats. No, sorry, not calling but screaming. She stands and screams at the cats for them to come in. I am wondering if they are maybe a bit brain damaged to behave in such a peculiar and anti-social fashion but have to believe they are just what is known as Trailer Park Trash since she works and he is a self-employed decorator.

    This is a bit long winded I know but I couldn’t make it any shorter. I have had mixed advice from people ranging from “getting someone to sort him out” to calling the Council about his parking. I have called the police who are coming round this evening just to check out the parking situation (I am more worried that an ambulance/police car/fire engine wouldn’t have access to my property than anything else) and they say they’ll be quite willing to have a word with him. I mentioned the spitting incident and they were more than a bit ruffled by that. I have the feeling, however, that that could initiate a full scale revenge attack from the Meercat.

    If anyone has any advice on how to stop this situation getting out of control, it’d be much appreciated.

  • #2

    you are not alone, with either the situation or the feelings of intimadation,

    I will reply tomorrow as work is calling..sigh!

    You are guarnteed support here and you have done nothing wrong.

    keep strong



    • #3
      Hi Jeannie

      I just wanted to say a quick hi to the board, glad you're with us here.

      This guy is something else, I can understand your nickname for him too. As well as the staring, he obviously behaves in an inhuman way! As well as being a harassing, bullying neighbour he also is trespassing on other people's lives and other people's property.

      I'm with Badger on this one, you sound like all the neighbours are supporting each other with this and they also fear this chap (e.g. with your elderly neighbour being scared when he crops up unexpectedly etc) - together you can be a real influencing force. Being spat is so personal, as well as vulgar and a criminal offence - it is threatening behaviour and as far as I'm aware would be classed as a violent act. Your NFH is also a racist, prejudice individual who seems to possess no morals or afterthoughts on how his actions will affect others!

      Your NFH sounds dangerous and I think in this circumstance you should always keep yourself safe - I know it may be an obvious thing to say, but when the adrenalin is rising and we get nervous, it's often easy to put ourselves in dodgy situations inadvertantly. Again, as Badger says don't hesitate to call the Police for help if you have to, however 'silly' it may make you feel.

      Thanks for your long post and I hope you find it helpful here


      • #4
        Hi Jeannie.

        Yep. It sounds like you've got pure trailer park redneck trash as the NFH.

        Badger has pretty much summed up what you need to do. However a BIG plus with your case is that the other neighbours are clearly with you on this one.

        With that in mind, I would suggest that you meet with them with a view to obviously recording everything but also writing a joint letter to your local councillor AND your local MP.

        The council will probably offer their mediation service which you should all agree to. Like all typical NFH's, yours will almost certainly turn this down. However it strengthens your case enormously at a later date if it ever came to court.

        Chin up and at least with this one, you know you'e not alone.

        Now, these creatures are bringers of death and misery. They will never eat, they will never sleep, and they will never stop.

        We are part of an ancient secret society. For three thousand years we have guarded the Cities and Towns. We are sworn at manhood to do any and all in our power to stop the NFH from ever being reborn into this world.

        So what's the plan?

        Rescue the damsel in distress, stop the bad guys, save the world.


        • #5
          Thanks for the advice Badger. Am working from home today and was going to go to the garden centre to get a new filter for my fish tank. However, the Meercat is having building work done and one of his cronies has parked a smashed up looking white Cavalier bang outside my garage. I can't get my car out. I keep expecting Jeremy Beadle to jump out. They've also removed some fence panels from the back of his garden and it seems they've brought them round to the front of my garage to smash them up. The ground is littered with splinters and the odd nail. Plus he has decided to put his rubbish out. About 6 bags at the moment and their all on the path (everyone else puts them at the edge of their lawn). I guess we should be grateful he's using the bin-man service instead of fly-tipping. The problem is we don't have our rubbish picked up til next Wednesday.

          Have wrestled with my temper for about half an hour now and have now begun to hope that the car stays there - at least until the police pay a visit this evening anyway. I guess he'll use the excuse that he thought I was out at work. I am just wondering how many times this has happened whilst I am out.

          As regards the wife, a couple of my neighbours are trying to "cultivate" her. It seems she works with my neighbours friend so we've managed to get the gossip that apparently she seems ok but no-one knows a thing about the Meercat. She makes a joke about how she allows him to keep all his fish as long as he disappears if she has a friend round. Whether or not her being "ok" refers to not being as obnoxious as him remains to be seen.

          I feel exhausted. This shouldn't be a battleground.


          • #6
            Hi Jeannie and welcome to the board.

            I sat in open mouthed shock reading your story. What a foul mouthed PIG!! I wonder why he's living here as he obviously has nothing but contempt for the British? Of course this might just be a defence mechanism gone wrong! (sorry, just playing devil's advocate here).

            It's good to hear that all your other neighbours are of the same mind as you about this thug. He is committing criminal damage if he is destroying your plants and lawns and I think you should ask the police to investigate this.

            As Badger says, keep a record of each and every incident and persuade your neighbours to do the same. Using obscene language and spitting at you constitutes an assault. Has ever made any threats? The constant staring is, in my opinion, threatening. Certainly, the walking past your window bit could be construed as prowling, especially if he is looking in through your windows. I was wondering if he would have to have planning permission for the bridge? Maybe one of the other members might have some info on this.

            Hmmm, Confederate flag? Trailer park trash? Are you sure his wife isn't his sister? Calling you a 'brit-b*tch' is a racist statement but it doesn't surprise me as he seems fond of the Confederate flag which is looked upon as a racist emblem to many in the States. Perhaps you could mention to the police that you find this flag offensive. I've certainly read of instances of pupils in US schools being suspended for displaying this flag.

            My son was with me as I was reading your story, and his suggestion was that you and all your neighbours come out into your gardens and stare back at him whilst lobbing water balloons at him But personally, I woudn't recommend that He sounds like he might be a dangerous man!! He certainly lives up to the stereotype of the loud mouthed, trailer park trash American but I'm sure there are many Americans who would be as horrified as you are by his behaviour.

            I'm sure the other members will have lots more good advice for you. In the meantime, don't forget that diary and come back often and let us know what is happening. Good luck


            PS, Wow, three other people have posted while I was composing this
            "Almost anything you do will seem insignificant, but it is very important that you do it. You must be the change that you wish to see in the world." Gandhi


            • #7

              I also meant to say in my last post, if you've not seen Tim Field's fantastic website, Bully Online, you must take a look:


              Tim's stuff is excellent and he has just added an update to his link to us from his site too


              • #8
                Thanks for all the support. It really, really helps.

                As you say, having good neighbours is a blessing. Not only that, it's had the added benefit of introducing people to each other as a sort of "coalition force". A woman I didn't know very well joined us for a chat (Meercat parks one of his vehicles on the pavement directly outside her living room window ( - no-one has ever, ever, ever parked there! You just ..... wouldn't you know?). She said she didn't realise how depressing it could be staring out at a rusty Vauxhall Carlton all weekend.

                Anyway, the conversation moved to gardening and plants and she gave me some fuscia cuttings so have made another friend in the street.

                I think starting a surveillance sort of thing is the thing we will have to do. One thing I would say is that I admire everyone here for being so civil! I was reading the York Stage website and seriously couldn't believe how he kept his temper. I have been on the verge of murder for days. I think this is why so many NFH get away with being what they are for so long - because people like us may have the thoughts of revenge but we do the decent thing and tread the correct path to a solution. I am sat here wandering why I don't take a stroll across HIS front lawn and kick over his plastic wishing well in return for my damaged anemones. I am really wondering what's stopping me. I guess it's all about respect and upbringing and not stooping to the level of others.

                I shall update you on the police views (unless WW3 erupts in the meantime).


                • #9
                  Horrendous, absolutely horrendous.

                  Hello Jeannie.

                  First of all this man sounds dangerous and however riled you feel, I would say don't rise to his bait. Everything you describe is of someone who doesn't care what you or anyone else thinks or does.

                  Everyone else will say and it's already been said - make notes of everything, but more importantly get the other neighbours to do it also. Use a dictaphone also, as Badger has said.

                  Why don't you and the other neighbours make an appointment to see local police. That way it shows you're all suffering, you're all worried about the situation and there's a serious ongoing problem here. You can put your points across in a stronger, more precise way than if you'd called them out after, or because, of an incident.

                  Also, as already mentioned - it's vital you get some sort of video survellience system, targetting your own property. We just bought one for under £150 quid from QVC - to watch wildlife actually - but it's sold as a home security item, and would obviously work perfectly for that.

                  This man is definitely not sharing planet sane.

                  What I'd really like to put across strongly is be safe Jeannie, don't take any risks with this one.

                  Looking over other peoples gardens from a bridge? What the....???

                  As for the Confederate flag malarky. He's showing his ignorance big style there. Maybe if he could read a few books, study history, he'd know what that flag really represented, but that requires application and intelligence, which is obviously a bit lacking in your NFH.

                  I know you'll get some real advice here, my bet is before I get to post this other members will have jumped in.

                  Here's wishing you the beginnings of some sort of a resolution in the not too distant future.

                  Kind regards



                  • #10
                    Hello Badger,

                    I don't feel strong enough to ask him to move his car at the moment. I know he won't do it immediately. He loves to make people wait and, if he's busy in the garden, he may "forget". You have to realise that he won't be told to do anything. Or asked. He does as he pleases. Right now I won't give him the satisfaction of knowing he's causing me inconvenience. I am thinking that maybe reverse psychology would be the best bet. Maybe ask him to please leave his car there as it was obviously a good security measure against anyone trying to break into my garage. He may well break his red-neck to move it.

                    The neighbours are also all at work so no back up.

                    The land with the garages is owned/maintained by 10 householders. We all have access (including Meercat).


                    • #11
                      The land with the garages is owned/maintained by 10 householders. We all have access (including Meercat).[/b]

                      He may have access but he is denying you access. I like the idea of reverse psychology He sounds so thick he just might fall for it

                      "Almost anything you do will seem insignificant, but it is very important that you do it. You must be the change that you wish to see in the world." Gandhi


                      • #12
                        Quickie update:

                        Have just logged on to and found four addresses with his name in the area. If anyone doesn't know about this site, you can use it to trace an address of anyone on the electrol roll as long as you know the name and rough address or town. Surprise, suprise one of the names came up as being registered in, not just one of, but THE roughest estate in the town. Unless the site has caught up with his move, it may be him. It wouldn't make for a very pleasant neighbour visit to find out about past histories I think ...

                        I am beginning to feel like Columbo doing all this detective/surveillance work


                        • #13
                          Hi Jeannie and welcome to the Board

                          Good grief, what a nightmare this person sounds. You have given a really good description of what you and your "normal" neighbours are suffering from at the moment, and I'm pleased to spot that your sense of humour is still alive and well (the Bridge over the River Koi... ).

                          (I've just seen that whilst I'm trying to write this you'vew had loads of replies!!)

                          Parking problems really got to me. I got so incensed that our nfh could even contmeplate parking his monstrosity in OUR space. It is a complete invasion.

                          This person, from what you say, appears more than a little "unstable". Have the Police been out before? Are they aware of any history of him?

                          Badger has given some great advice and I can't really add to it. All I will say, is keep strong and sane, chat regularly to your normal neighbours for support in all of this, and of course, come back here often to let us know how you're coping.

                          All the best.


                          • #14

                            I think the expression you used as "unstable" is the one that worries me as that is exactly what we think he is. He's obviously "Not Quite Right in the Head". We've been made fully aware that any form of mediation (i.e. spitting at a simple request not to walk on a lawn) will be met by his unfaltering nastiness and it doesn't lend much hope to solving this situation amicably. Everyone agrees he wants a fight. Problem is, no-one wants to have one as everyone suddenly realises they're dealing with something so unpredictable. Everyone realises they've got nice garden ornaments, cars with undamaged paintwork, children and pets. There's a big courage factor involved and it says a lot for the average psyche that people may well suffer in silence to keep whatever peace there is rather than live in constant fear that, when they wake up in the morning, the car has developed an interesting scratched pattern. I am not saying the neighbours will all back down, it's just that I feel exactly the same - probably more so as I live alone. However, common decency and good old true Brit Grit keeps shouting its mouth off in my head.

                            I've never wanted to be AT ALL before, but right now I wish I was a 6 foot 5 hairy-a*sed Hell's Angel! Now, that's saying something


                            • #15
                              The feelings that you are having are completely normal and what probably most of us have felt at some point.

                              It does take guts to stand up and confront people, but if you do that, it's advisable to ensure that you still have your guts at the end of the confrontation.

                              I'm not sure with this nfh. Well, I am actually. He is definitely unstable, of that I am sure. The thing is, is it all an act? Would he back down if he were confronted by a 6ft 5 h-a Hell's Angel? Possibly. But his behaviour would undoubtedly continue in some shape or form. I would not try to hold ANY conversation with your nfh. I don't think it is particularly safe to do so.

                              What you need to be impressing on the Police is that you belive this nfh to be a "danger to others" - he is a scary person. I'm frightened of him just reading your posting, never mind living near him. If the Police accept he is a danger, then they can detain him under the Mental Health Act of 1983 - I can't remember which section the initial holding is under. (This is not a nice thing to happen to people, but I think valid in this instance). It is worth considering Jeannie.

                              Scooby has had "Staring" problems from their nfh (Madhatter) and the Police have served an Order on MH under the Protection from Harassment Act 1997 - this is also another avenue to try. I'm sure Scooby will be along to offer further advice on this in the near future.

                              Let us know how you get on.