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Neighborhood Association Procrastination Blues by Geoff Dutton
 

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  • Based on a friend's true story. To be sung in four-part harmony to the refrain of Alice's Restaurant.


    We found a pretty house to buy
    When we moved uptown
    To a neighborhood that had a
    Homeowners association
    They welcomed us with a pat on the back
    And informed us we must keep our tract
    Shipshape like all the rest
    According to our pact

    Our suburban home had a lawn
    That was poorly tended
    With shrubbery and a little fence
    That needed to be mended
    Our lives were busy and so we forgot
    To improve the appearance of our lot
    And who would see it anyway
    At least that's what we thought

    Then came one day a note in the mail
    That brought unwelcome news:
    We better put our place in shape
    Or else we would be sued
    Besides our shrubs being too long in leaf
    The state of our lawn was beyond belief
    So fix it now and fix it good
    Or face the consequences

    We made a plan to do yard work
    When spring rolled around
    It made no sense to spruce it up
    While frost was on the ground
    Back we went to work and to school
    Assuming that the golden rule
    Applied to us and our neighbors too
    So everything would be fine

    And then one day the Sherriff wrote
    Wanting us to come in
    To explain to him why we had not
    Committed suburban sin
    We had no time or thought to obey
    So we tossed his letter away
    And went right on minding our biz
    Until spring rolled around

    Then one morning the doorbell rang
    As we were getting dressed
    There stood two of the Sheriff's men
    With a warrant for my arrest
    They hauled me off to the county jail
    Telling me I had to raise bail
    Of fifteen hundred smackaroos
    To get back on the street

    At my trial I faced the judge
    Some neighbors were there too
    The prosecutor's pictures showed
    All I'd failed to do
    He added there could be no defense
    For a board missing from our fence
    The judge looked at the evidence
    And said he thought so too

    Five hundred dollars was the fine
    The judge deemed fair enough
    To motivate my lazy butt
    To get things up to snuff
    Thinking that this was not a good deal
    I told the judge I was gonna appeal
    So I paid the court for its costs
    And hired me a lawyer

    You can get anything you want
    In my neighborhood
    You can get anything you want
    If your place is looking good
    So move right in and buy you a tract
    Spruce it up and don't show any slack
    You can get anything you want
    Except to be left alone.
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