My wife Pat and I were recently at the 1866 Italianate brick home of some new friends. Their home is in good shape but has three interior, exposed brick walls in the kitchen. They showed me where all the mortar is crumbling, which in turn leaves this nasty grit all over their counter tops. "We would like to keep this old look. What should we do?" they asked.
I know most folks think squirrels are cute and adorable. Not me, I consider them to be no more than rats with bushy tales. Not only are they pesky, they've had trouble adjusting to city life. It seems they like to play with moving vehicles, giving them the dubious distinction of being one of the top urban road kills.
In the mid-1970's some clothing designer came up with the brilliant design for polyester leisure suits. For about five years everyone just had to have one. Why, you wouldn't be groovy if you didn't wear one to work, the disco or even church.
In the past, nothing epitomized neighbor helping neighbor more than a rural barn raising. Today, in our central city, historic neighborhoods, a modern day version of a barn raising is bringing neighbors together, old house unveilings.
I was recently chatting with a neighbor who asked, " We love our 100 year old home. However, it sure is a drafty old place! We're interested in blowing insulation into the walls, what do you think Bob?"
Some people will tell you that if you live in a historic district or the community is thinking about making your neighborhood a historic district, the world is coming to an end. They say things like, "It's nothing but a left wing conspiracy to take my property rights away" or "The paint police are coming to tell us why we can't cover our old house with plastic siding".