Almost exactly twelve years ago, these cheerful-looking Stepford Wives & Children were celebrating their non-individuality and neighborhood “sameness.”
“SAN CLEMENTE-On Optima, as on all the surrounding byways, there is no room for ostentatious individualism.
The houses in Richmond Pointe are neatly packed and hygienically Mediterranean. Strict codes prevent homeowners from adorning their places with nonconforming colors or add-ons, or parking cars in front of their own driveways. Each house has one of four floor plans.
But the neighbors who live behind the stucco facades say the exterior conformity has bestowed a special neighborhood-ness – a secure, tidy, friendly feel – upon their little community.
Check out the whole article, it’s a hearty helping of that old-time Orange County xenophobia. Whenever you find yourself thinking that “OC”-fueled satire like Weeds or The Real Housewives Of Orange County might be going too far, just remember that the reality is probably far stranger. At the very least, you need to know who you’re sharing the planet with.
If you had asked me back then what I thought would happen to these people, I probably would have shrugged out a “dunno” or two with a side commentary about repression exploding unexpectedly. Of course, the reality is indeed far stranger and San Clemente has it’s share of oddness. It’s the home of Richard Nixon’s Western White House, the setting for the movie Brick, and a place where the locals don’t want an In-N-Out.
The formerly peaceful neighbors have declared all-out war in a neo-Ballardrian spectacle of public namecalling, “abortion” graffiti, and gallons of human shit and rotting animal parts. The OC Register is back on the case.
SAN CLEMENTE – Rick Collins said his children were shunned at the beach and the word “Abortion” was splattered on his house when he added a second story.
Al Cullen said 10 gallons of human feces and rotting animal parts were thrown into his yard after he began circulating a petition to ban the addition of second stories in the Shorecliffs neighborhood.
The two are on opposite sides of a festering dispute in Shorecliffs that has pitted neighbor against neighbor, disrupted city government and spilled over into county Republican politics.
Jane Graff grew up in the community and she is raising her three children in Shorecliffs. Graff is active in the faction that wants to maintain one-story homes.
“I received a threatening e-mail; it said ‘we should settle this the old-fashioned way, out in the alley,” she said. “These are bullies.” She said the neighborhood had prided itself on neighbors respecting the ocean views of others.
Brian Opp said he recognized that his family was being shunned after he built a second story and supported others who wanted one.
“We’d invite all the children in the neighborhood to our children’s birthday parties, but all of a sudden, our children were never invited to the birthday parties of other children,” he said.
I guess this is where my greying O.C. roots start showing. My hometown of Laguna Beach has had a planning commission in place for years and for the most part it’s been pretty effective. Why screw up something that benefits everyone? If you don’t like it, don’t move there. Do your homework ahead of time and don’t be like this dumbass:
Tuesday Price moved into Shorecliffs in 2004. She said she found herself ostracized by “the clique at the beach” after she revealed she wanted to remodel her home.
“We spent $1 million on a 40-year-old home and then found out there wasn’t much we could do to improve it. We thought we had found our dream house, and we’re totally disillusioned that government can do this,” she said.
I suppose the best summation of this entire fiasco come from this political campaign manager (natch):
“As much as everyone appreciates an ocean view, there is no constitutional right to have one”
Translation: The world is ME ME ME, and my neighbors and everyone else can go hang. Pretty much the state of USA2006 if you ask me.
In case you were wondering if there was an old Indian burial ground that would helpfully suck all of these people into the Netherworld, there isn’t. However, there is radioactive water leaking from the nearby nuclear power plant. It all makes sense somehow.