June 14, 2009

Can You Hear Me Now? Go Ahead, Cuff Me!

Right down the road from the Cleaver compound, there's a little town named Herculaneum. The population of the town is 2,800, give or take a few. Now, I've only been here about a year, so I was not aware of the problems brewing in this seemingly sleepy hamlet.

Lucky for me, we get the county weekly newspaper delivered to our mailbox every Thursday. Now I can be in the know about the crime spree that is taking place literally in our own back yard.

Apparently, the folks in Herky (that's what the locals call it) are a loud, raucous bunch. They've always had a noise ordinance (most communities do), but it was difficult for the police to determine whether the peace had been disturbed. The updated ordinance now is much more specific in what.will.NOT.be.tolerated. Police Capt. Mark Tulgetske said, "The ordinance basically breaks down the violations into several categories, which makes it easer to define what the violation is."

Among the no-nos are:
  • Horns
  • Whistles
  • Radios
  • Compact disk players
  • Yelling
  • Loud animals
  • Loud mufflers
  1. Construction work cannot be done prior to sunrise or after sunset.
  2. Loud music, yelling, shouting, hooting, singing and whistling in public is verboten if it can be heard 50 feet from its source.
  3. Loud barking, yelping and howling are unlawful.
  4. Vehicles without mufflers are prohibited. Also prohibited are unnecessary grating, grinding and braking noises (so roll right on through that stop sign, if appropriate).
  5. If you want to have a large gathering IN YOUR OWN HOME, and you think you'll be generating noise, you must get a permit.
Violations could result in a misdemeanor conviction. The penalty from these crimes range from $50 to $500.

Ok, now that I've listed the infractions and the penalties, I must also let you know that I am a scofflaw at heart. I don't think the government has any business telling me what to do, as long as I am not harming anybody.

I've been thinking about what future updates to the ordinance (and life in Herky) may be coming. Here's what I came up with:
  • Kazoos will be banned. In fact, the SWAT team will storm into everyone's house to remove combs and waxed paper. Pots and pans will need to be registered with the Noise Police - lid banging is strictly discouraged.
  • Beans, beer, and other gassy foods will be subject to mandatory collection and disposal, lest someone rip a big fart.
  • Citizens will be issued Breathe Right strips, to prevent snoring.
  • Homeowners will begin to hoard cardboard egg cartons in an effort to create a soundproof room in their homes.
  • There will be a glut of drums and other loud musical instruments at local yard sales, since playing them at home is out of the question. (Scheduled city, school, church and sporting events do not fall under the order, so kids in the band can continue to make their music, and parades will still take place).

We drove through Herky today. From the passenger seat of the van, I:

yelled "Hey" several time out my open window
Whistled as loudly as I could
honked the Mister's horn a total of six times

And you know, during the next full moon, I will be doing a drive-by howling.


  1. LOL Good grief, they'd run my dryer and me out of town!

    Seriously, I think I saw a neighbor walking past my house with ear protection this morning.

  2. That is crazy...it sounds like something out of a 'Twilight Zone' episode. Weird, and a little creepy too.

    I would love to see the drive-by howling though!

  3. I guess we'll have to cross your town off our Places-to-Live list as The Husband and I are champion snorers.

  4. But the Kuhn's don't live in Herky!


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