At the end of my street lived a woman in her 80’s and a her nephew. The Nephew was a middle aged man with typical habits, but nothing about him looked too strange.
He had a train set in the garage and he wanted to show it to my kids a few years ago. I thank gawd every day that I met him when the kids were toddlers.
The rule has been this:
You are allowed to walk down the street and around the corner but under no circumstances are you to talk to creepy guy. If he says hello, you keep walking, don’t even nod your head.
Everyone called me crazy and I didn’t care. In my mind he had all the flags of a pedophile, and my gut told me he was bad news. Predators don’t look like the boogeyman, predators look like nice guys that kids would want to trust. Until a few months ago, I’d let my kids walk the neighborhood, but look out the window to be certain they were clear of creepy guy’s house. A few months back Creepy Nephew was kicked out of the house. The work crews reported to all the neighbors that his area was strewn with pornography and hypodermic needles. I was sadly correct in my assessment of our neighbor.
This afternoon something even more hideous happened. My 28 year old neighbor with her two children came over to talk about Creepy Guy. She’d heard about the porn and the needles, and she was surprised by it.
“It didn’t surprise me one bit. I’ve been checking with Megan’s Law and even called a friend at the Sheriff’s Department.” I began.
“Really? He seemed so nice to me, he was always asking about the kids, and visiting a lot.” The Young Neighbor told me.
“Uh, do you think it’s strange that a forty year old man lives with his elderly aunt, plays with toys and asks you about your kids?” I began.
“Oh my gosh. I’m so naive!” She exclaimed, “Maybe when I’m nice and mature like you are, I’ll be able to sense this stuff too.”
And then she proceeded to tell me about her nose job. Cuz, ya know, she’s not mature like I am, and apparently can’t focus.