IN FOCUS: Neighbour Who Loves a Leaf Blower

Since their inception, leaf blowers have been tearing more suburbs apart than the St Andreas Fault. Statistically, every suburb will have at least 10 blow enthusiasts and the quickest way to summon one is to over-fresh yourself the night before. 

They emit less of a noise and more of an aural existential crisis. It’s almost like your early bird neighbour is performing a rectal exorcism on a possessed mechanical anteater. It’s unmistakable, powerful and also sets every dog off on your street. A real orchestra of migraine inducing noise. 

Naturally, to achieve the ultimate level of leaf blowing shitheadery, one must activate the winds of nuisance as early as humanly possible on a weekend morning. Every local council has their own bylaws on when you can use it. 

As a general rule if they can operate from 7am they’ll start her up at 6:50am. What are you going to do, call the ranger for a 10 minute breach? Operating in the grey area of the bylaws is what the leaf bloweratti do best. 

Of course, professionals gardeners working against the clock can be forgiven for relying on the blower to clear larger properties. However, your New Balance wearing pest of a neighbour doesn’t fit that bill. 

Oh no, despite clearly doing nothing with their day, they definitely couldn’t spare the time to use a good old fashioned broom to clear their 8 by 3m driveway. Perhaps even being so bold as to sweep the leaves up and discard them rather than blowing them into your yard and waiting for them to come back. 

Naturally, the leaf blowing kings don’t see this as an issue at all. As when the leaves return it gives them another fantastic opportunity to whip out their beloved blower and repeat the vicious cycle of redundant gardening work. 

They also have no fear of suburban confrontation. Why should they have to consider other people’s enjoyment when they are kinda operating within the bylaws? They live by the bylaws, and they’ll die by the bylaws. 

If you’re really lucky, a vigorous Sunday morning of leaf blowing will turn into a lunchtime power tool session as your neighbour engages in tradie-cosplay in his shed. He doesn’t know what he’s doing so you know you’ll be hearing 45 minutes of angle grinder for a 5 minute job. 

After several years of being a power tool himself, the neighbour will generally become increasingly villainous in their carry on. As the council complaints stack up against him he’ll only strengthen his resolve to blow.

Surely they would be accepting of neighbourly noise given their favourite pastime? Wrong. Just watch them call the police on you the moment they can if you’re playing music from your house on a weekend night. After all, some people need to be up early, to leaf blow. 

Documenting the Human Zoo is thirsty work, so if you enjoyed what you read how about buying Belle a beer, ay?