The Hoarder Next Door

I have a friend who lives next to a very nice man. Unfortunately, he also happens to be a hoarder. His yard is full of junk cars, and his backyard looks exactly like that compound in Sacramento where the kidnapped Jaycee Dugard was held for 18 years.

My friend says she’s never heard any signs of life back there, fortunately. And he doesn’t seem to be the type of person who hoards animals or urine, because the place doesn’t seem to smell. Who knows what it’s like inside, though.

I firmly believe that people have a right to live exactly as they please, as long as it’s not harming anyone else. My friend isn’t detecting any kind of health hazard, and this man isn’t hurting anyone or anything but himself. In the Seattle area, nothing short of a nuclear waste dumping ground seems to negatively impact property values. He’s also the neighborhood’s go-to guy when someone needs to borrow a tool.

But I can’t help but feel sorry for the man. Clearly he has an anxiety disorder, and the accumulation of crap is his way of soothing himself. But it doesn’t seem to be working for him. Even though he’s pleasant enough, I detect this underlying tension and unhappiness. I hope someday he gets help. And I pity whomever has to deal with that house and its contents once he’s gone.

The compound where Jaycee Dugard and her children were held for 18 years.

A big thanks to StoryCorps for inspiring this blog and my first book.

2 thoughts on “The Hoarder Next Door

  1. Am kind of a hoarder. One of the friendly people I knew in Lincoln, Neb. was Dad T.
    Techincally, he was my brod in law’s dad. Trabert originally from Alsace Loriaine. The
    family was Troibert before it was changed. He was a retired teacher. Dad would call me
    when he needed an extra hand” I learned Am. tools. Dad would especially call me when his
    apple tre4e was full. He would ask me to harvest it give me a bushle ? It was too much for the
    4 of us. He suggest3ed turning it i n apple pie, which we never did. we gave it way to neighbors,
    who had apple trees. We took it the the nursery where my wife works. Going back to the Traberts, they homesteaded the a small Nebraska town. His younger brother Karl was the
    mayor there. DAD TRABERT was pack rat. He had all kinds of junk in his basement.
    He also had a “till” there, we susprcted..

    Dad was so nice, he took me to the airport.

    Dad rented out his apartments to out state students. We would repaint the houses
    and raised the price..

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