The Fun Hating Nosey Neighbor

Taking oneself seriously does not inhibit hilarity.


Being an adult doesn't require being a fun sponge. What is a fun sponge? Is a fun sponge someone who's soaked up so much fun that they leak a little out every time they're squeezed? It sounds similar to being tickled, how just being touched in ticklish areas makes one ooze out laughter. Maybe it's gross to compare laughing, something so beautiful and natural, to a common sponge, something crawling with bacteria and filthy stink. Still, if that's what it is, I suppose I'm OK with a fun sponge, as even though it's gross, it's still fun, right?


A fun sponge is someone who soaks up all the fun so that no one else can have any. They're like a dry sponge. Not a clean, dry sponge, but a dirty, moldy, professional, I-hate-children-I-was-born-an-adult sponge. Fun sponges aren't small kitchen sponges, either. Imagine a disgusting sponge the size of a king size mattress. Now imagine that sponge is enthused about their 401k and owns a condo. On top of that, that sponge hates dancing and never eats sweets because it's more of a savory person. Savory as in never sweet, never ever sweet, not savory as in I want savory and sweet. On lovely spring days when everyone is happy and floating about like a butterfly, fun sponges are hanging from the shadows like a bat. A hissing, pretentious bat. A bat that owns a condo.

Could a fun sponge ever be exposed to so much fun that despite its tremendous size it actually fills up and does release some of the fun, which essentially would be the sponge being fun? This I don't know. It is a rather dangerous experiment. I fear that to get to this point one would have to sacrifice all of the fun they could possibly muster. Although we can assume it would come back out when the sponge has reached capacity, the threat is too great of that capacity being even higher than all available fun to test it with. Another frightening possibility is that fun sponges can only release boring forms of fun, like interest in new khaki pants or trips to Cape Cod.

Are fun sponges so effective at soaking up everyone else's fun and so common that there's no hope, no point in even having fun as an adult in the first place? No, absolutely not. When a fun sponge is at work, it becomes floppy and lethargic. The sponge is just as exhausted with its working against a good time as those exposed to its doing so are. So, when a fun sponge gets going, the rest can simply leave it behind and move on. Also, even though any one individual sponge could potentially soak up and ruin all available fun, if allowed to, there are still way more people having fun and way more fun options than a single sponge can soak up. Furthermore, fun sponges tend to congregate, so rarely will one find oneself in a situation where they are having fun and everyone else is a sponge. It is usually the case that sponges are ruining a good time together only among sponges, like an entire cave of condo owning bats.

The silver lining of spongedom is a SpongeBob. A SpongeBob is a real life version of SpongeBob SquarePants. They are happy people that soak up fun and squeeze it back out for all to have, regardless of capacity. SpongeBobs are like the first hypothetical I posed in answer to the question "What is a fun sponge?", only funner. They're like a person who, when tickled, not only laughs, but makes everyone else laugh. SpongeBobs are great and we're all blessed to have them.

A final champion of fun in the world of spongedom is perspective. We can all agree that fun sponges like to have a bad time and make a bad time for everyone else. When someone tells a joke at the water cooler, fun sponges love lecturing everyone why the joke's not that funny and actually is wrong because if dogs really could talk they would tell us all about the woes of oppression, making us all think WOOF in a very different way than a simple bark. However, while having and making a bad time, fun sponges often have funny things happen to them. They certainly don't find it funny, but we can. And we should. Imagine if while teaching us about dog enslavement, ruining the nice little break we were trying to have, the fun sponge slips on some water that's dripped from the cooler and falls into the cooler, making the whole thing fall down and pour all over them. That is funny, and not just because they're a sponge so they'll grow super big from all that water.

It's just extra funny seeing people that take themselves too seriously have something silly happen to them.


I have a nosey neighbor. Her name is Sarah. I don't know her last name and I don't really care to know. Sarah is a lovely first name and I know many Sarahs that I love. Not my neighbor Sarah, though. She is a total chafe and I really dislike her.

I don't know what Sarah does for a living, but I do know what she does in her place of living. She spies. I don't know how she does it--I never see her looking out her window or over the fence or anything--but she seems to know every little thing I do in my little town house. And she hates it, all of it.

Last year the police came to my house seventeen different times in response to complaints. Seventeen. They were mostly noise-related, which is why I now only listen to music through my headphones, but also included all kinds of crazy complaints. One complaint was that I was a likely arsonist, drug dealer, AND child thief. The police officer who responded to that call was quite surprised to see that the fire was not in my house but in my burn pit, and that the drugs I was dealing were not pills but Kraft Jet-Puffed Miniature Marshmallows, which we were toasting over the fire. The stolen children? My seven year old nephew and some of his friends for a birthday party in my backyard.  A birthday party that all of their parents were at. What better way to steal a child than to steal their parents, too, eh?

By the seventeenth complaint, the police didn't even check on whatever it was they were responding to. "Do you know who's making these complaints?" asked the officer, quite angry.

"Isn't it the lady two houses down, Sarah something?" I asked.

"They're all anonymous and from different numbers," said the officer. He pointed to her house. "From that house?" he asked.


"That's what I thought and what many of us have thought, but there's no one home there. There never is when we get these calls."

"Really? I'm sorry, that's just who I assumed."

"If you figure out who it really is, please ask her to stop. She's wasting our time," said the officer. He turned and left, disgruntled.

I closed the door, went to my back porch, and sat down. I looked over at Sarah's house. She was looking at me through the window.

Surprised and uncomfortable, I looked down at my feet. What the... I thought. I looked back at her window. She was gone. Crazy old bat.


One morning a few days later, I woke up to yelling.

"Excuse me! EXCUSE ME!" It was coming from out back.

I got out of bed, put on some slippers, and went to the back porch.

"I know you can hear me!" It was coming from the alley.

I walked to the back of the yard and looked in the alley. A blue city garbage truck drove down the narrow street. A woman wearing a faded pink robe with curlers in her hair scuffled after the truck. She held a small garbage can in one hand and waved with the other. A garbageman in a black jumper rode on the little platform at the back of the truck. He was wearing radio earmuffs and moved his head back in forth to some beat.

"How dare you ignore me? I know you purposely left my trash, you scumbags!" yelled Sarah, chasing faster now.

The truck slowed to a stop. The garbageman hopped off, grabbed a full can and turned back to the truck, still bopping his head to his music. Sarah came to the truck at the same time as he did. As she walked up to him, he turned and lifted the can upside down above the open truck. She stopped right in front of him.

"Do you have any idea who--"

The most amazing thing happened in that instant. Seeing her all of a sudden must have startled the garbageman, as he sort of jumped back right as the can was at its peak. The garbage momentarily clung to the turned over can like ice in the bottom of an empty glass, then plopped out, all at once. The man's jump threw off his aim at the back of the truck. The garbage fell onto my nosey neighbor Sarah. All of the garbage.

"Oh, my, AHHHHHHHH" yelled Sarah, her pink robe splattered with green, brown, and yellow slime. All kinds of wet, gooey crud was in her hair and on her face.

The garbageman took off his headphones, a look of complete horror on his face. "I'm so sorry, mam. You really scared me out of nowhere like that, I'm... You're--"

"I'm soaked in garbage!" yelled Sarah, pulling a decaying banana peel off her shoulder.

I turned and went back into my house, trying my best to hold in the giggles. It looked like it was going to be a great day.


There are three things on TV in the morning: the news, SportsCenter, and cartoons. The news is usually boring. It's especially hard to watch in the morning, too, as it's just such a brutal start to the day. SportsCenter is fun and exciting. However, after a while it's just the same stories and highlights with different players and teams. Now cartoons, they're always good. They're not only colorful and fun, but they make you laugh while sometimes learning something important, too.

The best part about cartoons is you don't have to be a kid to watch them. A lot of the funny stuff is actually written just for adults, which is quite satisfying.

It's good to laugh and healthy to laugh at yourself. If you're too grown up to laugh at yourself, hopefully someone else saw it, because it's a shame to let something funny go unlaughed at.