My Neighbor Built it, but Will They Come?

All of the houses in our areas have 2-10 acres, most of them being around 5. Except for the lawns, they’re all wooded areas. About 5 years ago, our neighbor bought a skidsteer and proceeded to push all of the trees and brush down on his land. This went on just about every day for 5 years. He cut the big trees down with a chainsaw. We’d hear huge pines come crashing down all weekend long. He then had what looked like a war zone in his back yard. It was all dirt. He pushed everything back to his property line in a huge pile (I think coyotes live in it now!).No one knew why he did it. He was asked and didn’t have an answer. I think it was an excuse to use his skidsteer. He had a huge sandbox to play in. After he had it all cleared, he continued to drive his skidsteer around, smoothing his dirt out. There were days that he had 10 loads of dirt dropped of (industrial sized dump trucks) per day. He spent hours and hours - days and days pushing that dirt around. For 5 years we heard a constant “beep, beep” every time he backed up. I think he drove in reverse more than forward.

The other day when my husband was on our trail, he saw the neighbor throwing grass seed on the back side of his dirt field. He asked him what he was doing. The guy said he was building a sand lot and he was seeding the outfield! My husband took me back on our land so we could see a better view of the neighbor’s “yard”. I could not believe my eyes. He has a professional looking baseball diamond with actual canvas base bags! My husband asked him who was going to use it. He said - the kids. He and his wife have been retired for at least 10 years. They never had kids so there are no grandkids either. In the 24 years we’ve lived next door to him, we have never seen any kids visiting. There are just a few kids that live close by but I don’t see them going over to play baseball. It is the weirdest thing ever.

At least he’s enjoying himself!

Sounds like my neighbor. He drove a tractor/backhoe for a living, 8 hours a day. He’d come home and drive his little tractor around for another 5-6 hours. His 2 acres are smooth as a billiard table.

Keep an eye out for a guy in the outfield with no shoes…

That’s the kind of crazy that more people should be. He’s keeping himself occupied and not harming anyone. Any utility beyond that is purely bonus.

Perhaps next year, he’ll plant corn, to give the spectral baseball players a place to walk out of.

For varying definitions of “harm.” His property, his right. But I’d be beyond annoyed to live next to that sort of guy. I don’t want to live next to a perpetual construction site.

And yet you let him live. I truly admire you! :flushed:

While I love the idea of a guy building a baseball diamond on his property…I agree with this. As the OP describes it, it was five years of daily tree removal, and another five years of grading and filling in dirt.

Calling @Shoeless!

I am going to look up what a skidsteer is right now…

EDIT: Ohhh!

It’s been 5 years total.

And believe me, it’s been ridiculous at times. Some days I could ignore it, but some days that f’n beeping would just grate on my nerves. Not that we’re the Cravitizes, but we contacted the police and city hall a few times. The cops went to talk to him, but there was really nothing they could do. As long as he didn’t start before 8 and shut it down by a certain time. He always followed those rules. My husband asked him if he could turn off the beeper. He said - No, that it’s an OSHA law. Well, I assume it’s an OSHA law if you’re on a worksite, not in your backyard.

Apologies for misunderstanding – but, even so, five years of that must have been ridiculous, as you note. Even if he was within his rights, and following the law, it still makes him an annoying neighbor, IMO.

It’s unlikely that MLB will hold the 2023 Field of Dreams game due to construction at the site, so, hey, there’s an alternate field for them to play on.

Jesus? Gandhi?

A friend of mine got a good deal on a used one. He cleaned it up, repainted it, added a back up camera, etc.

He loves that thing. He bought some accessories for it and claims it has paid for itself. He taught me how to do the basics with it and gotta admit, it’s addicting.

Yeah, you don’t want me out there playing baseball. Trust me. :wink:

He’s just testing missiles. :smiley:

Maybe it’s like the candy house in the Hansel & Gretel story…

It’s like a Bobcat, right?

He harmed the trees, and everything that was living in them. He contributed twice to climate change, once by destroying the trees and again by the fuel he used to do so. He contributed to air pollution. He made unpleasant noises audible by the neighbors, day after day for years.

One of the parks just a few kilometers from my apartment in Beijing has a kid-sized one, along with some other kid-sized construction equipment (backhoe, etc.). The tykes love it. They are operated with adult supervision, so it’s not that scary that the kids are operating them.