My mind is a dangerous place. Make sure you wear a cup.

Friday, April 14, 2006

Is this anything I should be worried about?

So I come home the other day and Mrs. Fab asks me if I know anything about the flags that our neighbor has put up.

I hadn't noticed any flags when I came home, so she takes me into the bedroom and has me look through the window at his house next door:

Beats me. Our neighbor is a little strange. We call him Used-To-Be Howard because I can't remember what his real name is. When we first moved to the neighborhood a guy named Howard used to live in that house. When he moved away, it just seemed easier to call the new guy Used-To-be-Howard.

Used-To-be-Howard served in Vietnam. I don't know if that means anything. But the very first time I met him he worked the fact into the conversation by the fifth sentence. That always seemed a little odd to me.

I mention that because I went out the next morning and took better pictures. The flags seem to be Far Eastern in origin I would guess:



Anyone have any ideas what these signify, and why he feels the need to hang them up between our two side yards?

It's not that he has any Far Eastern sensibilities. There is nothing Zen about this guy.

It's a puzzler.

Of course, I could just go ask him. But that seems like a lot of trouble. For one thing, I'd have to get out of this chair. And it's very comfortable.

Plus, that's probably what he wants me to do.

These flags seem like the sort of thing that smart, soulful folks like Jozee, Merlin Princesse, or Ginny would know about...

42 Comments:

Blogger Lorraine said...

Ok, I'll visit...love the flags, good photos!
You and Ben share that lazy quality that cracks me up ;)
Ben sent me!!! well he threatened me with an axe...

4:58 AM  
Anonymous Nunya said...

Maybe he was too lazy and didn't feel like planting shrubs to act as a barrier between properties.

5:42 AM  
Blogger Ingrid said...

they're tibetan prayer flags arent they? or something like that.

6:37 AM  
Blogger Matthew S. Urdan said...

Like Ingrid said, they're prayer flags. If you look at climbing expeditions in the Himalayas, you will always see prayer flags at Base Camp. They are used as offerings in mountain climbing to appease the gods so that successful summit bids can be made, especially on peaks like Mt. Everest.

They are also used in places like Alaska for Denali Summit Attempts, and a display of them can be found at the Talkeetna Ranger Station, which is the staging area for all Denali Mountain Climbs.

If you read John Krakauer's Into Thin Air, you will get a really good description of prayer flags. Or alternatively, you can rent the VHS or DVD of the IMAX film "Everest" at your local library or Blockbuster and you can see massive displays of Prayer Flags and other rituals, such as the spinning of prayer cylinders, the lighting of butter lamps, and more.

There are several links to Denali on my blog under the Alaska Travel Section on my sidebar if you would like to start exploring from there.

7:37 AM  
Blogger CanadianSwiss said...

Right. Well, no need for me to comment here. Mathhew beat me to it. I was going to send you over to Ginne (she had a post about these prayer flags just recently). So there you go.

7:50 AM  
Blogger Mimi said...

Well I am glad Ingrid and Matthew knew cause I was stumped like you Mr Fab!

8:09 AM  
Blogger Blogarita said...

Everthing's zen.

8:12 AM  
Blogger T said...

I was stumped too Mr. Fab- I was thinking racing- am I a girl or what?

8:15 AM  
Blogger Gary J. Wood said...

Buddhist Prayer Flags. That would be my guess, too.

8:32 AM  
Blogger Attila The Mom said...

Maybe he's planning on doing some nekkid sunbathing and doesn't want to scare the neighbors?

Too weird! LOL

9:06 AM  
Blogger Mindless Dribbler said...

Hell, I'm at a loss. Course, I've always been "sheltered" anyway.

9:13 AM  
Blogger Sandi said...

I had no clue, but am was glad to read about them in your comments section! you learn something new every day.

ummmm, my question is.. why does he need so many?

9:15 AM  
Blogger Mr. Fabulous said...

Lorraine--Lazy? I'm lazy? Oh yeah, I guess I am...

Nunya--That's not much of a barrier!

Ingrid--Ahh...

Matt--My friend, I should have figured you would know. I'm going to follow up and do a little research on these...Thanks!

CS--Maybe that's why they seemed vaguely familiar, because of Ginnie's post...

Mimi--Then I am in good company!

Blogarita--Even Chris Matthews?

T--Yes, decidedly so LOL

Gary--I am kind of disappointed that they're not for signaling aliens or something...

Attila--As far as I know, I am the only naked sunbather in the cul-de-sac...

Mindless--I find that VERY hard to believe...

Sandi--Isn't it obvious? Because he has me for a neighbor!

9:42 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He' praying that you will move away. That fact that their are so many is impressive . You must be a real asshole.

9:45 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

He' praying that you will move away. That fact that THERE are so many is impressive . You must be a real asshole.

9:48 AM  
Blogger Mr. Fabulous said...

Always nice to meet a fan!

10:04 AM  
Blogger Cat said...

Jumping in on the quest. Interesting neighbor you have there. Think maybe he's planning his own expedition or maybe that's to encourage YOU to expedition into his yard and meet him?

Subliminals :)

10:32 AM  
Blogger beadinggalinMS said...

I am sure happy someone answered ya cause beats me what they are.
Thanks for all your get well wishes you left me. I am getting back to my fiesty self and very happy to be out of the hospital. BTW the lemur pics with their long tails left me feelin all warm heehee :)

10:46 AM  
Blogger ENGLISH RANTER said...

I believe that he is recreating an exact model of the village of his final, terrible last acts in Vietnam.
Next thing you know he'll have dug a tunnel under your house and pop his head up through the floor in front of the TV shouting "Die Charlie Die".
Buy him a dvd of Platoon, go round there and introduce yourselves again like good neighbours should with your new gift, and then tell him you're moving.
Before he gets the napalm out.

11:02 AM  
Blogger Pandora said...

The only asshole I see here is an anonymous one who has to post TWICE to make a retarted comment.

11:04 AM  
Blogger CrankyProf said...

They look like Buddhist prayer flags...but it could just be hat your neighbor's PTSD has finally gottenth ebest of him, and he's looooooney.

11:08 AM  
Blogger cherish said...

I think they are flags to thank you for being such a wonderful neighbor. He is praying for your well being. SMILES!

11:11 AM  
Blogger Shannon said...

LOL I am sorry I have no clue..but I am laughing at the whole" Used to be Howard" thing, How cute.

11:23 AM  
Blogger Big Pissy said...

I WAS gonna say they look like the flags I'm using as part of my decorations for my Cinco de Mayo party, but I guess that'd be wrong, huh? ;-)

Like Sandi said: you learn something new everyday!

11:46 AM  
Blogger peebugg said...

Maybe---he is getting ready for Jeff Corwin's "Realm of the Yetti" on tommorrow on animal planet.....

Maybe he is related to the Yetti????

12:14 PM  
Blogger Erin said...

The idea (as I undertand it) is this:
Buddhists place the prayer flags outside, and every time they flap in the wind, it is a prayer.

As a side note, they get ratty pretty fast. They won't stay so nice and colorful, but then, they have more character when it look like they've brought a lot of colorful prayers into the world, no?

12:50 PM  
Blogger DutchBitch said...

Thanks Fab! Then I guess Prayer Flags are the thing that MY upstairs neighbour has hanging from his balcony as well... I too have never gone up to ask him as I too suspect that is really what he wants me to do... And as he more or less is the village idiot I felt I'd better restrain myself from doing that...

1:21 PM  
Blogger Mr. Fabulous said...

Cat--You COULD mount en expedition into his yard. He's not the tidiest fellow...

Beady--I am glad you are back! Now stop slacking off! LOL

English Ranter--Can i get him one of Apocalypse Now instead? I vastly prefer that film...

FCL--Well, it take all kinds! :)

CP--That's why I try to stay on his good side, and I also do not wear black pajamas!

Cherish--I like your interpretation!

Shannon--LOL We have a few Used-To-Be's on the cul-de-sac!

Pissy--Ooh, I'll be looking for my invitation!

Peebugg--He IS rather hairy...

Erin--That is another nice idea. Very thoughtful take!

Dutch--You know, Village Idiots need love too!

3:44 PM  
Anonymous Ed Bacchus said...

Stopped by while on the quest.

6:15 PM  
Blogger Jetting Through Life said...

Your story cracked me up!!

XXOO,
JTL

6:37 PM  
Blogger Matthew S. Urdan said...

Hey Brad, look what you did! You cracked Lorraine and Melissa up. Now we have to put Humpty Dumpty back together again! Sheesh!

Thanks for all the comments and kind words today! You rock my world, Sausage Man!

7:40 PM  
Blogger grainne said...

They are called buddist prayer flags - not only are they supposed to bring happiness, long life and prosperity to the person who hangs them but to anyone in the general area. They are normally hung from the eves of a home or strung on ropes and hung in a horizonal fashion as your used to be howard has done.

However used to be howard has hung them in the correct order so maybe he knows what he is doing not just some decoration for his yard...I hope they bring both of your homes the things they are supposed to...hell play lotto this weekend! Who knows?

7:50 PM  
Blogger Mr. Fabulous said...

Ed--Thanks for popping in, my friend!

Melissa--Happy to help!

Matt--Perfect! Sausage and eggs!

Grainne--Hmm...so he knows what he is doing, eh? I will definitely play the lottery tomorrow morning when I am at the grocery store!

7:55 PM  
Blogger merlinprincesse said...

See! You don't need us honey!!!! Some people are soooo clever! But thanks for the compliment! :)

11:54 PM  
Anonymous Ficklechick said...

Methinks he's playing survivor!

Perhaps you're on the opposing tribe and you just don't know it.

12:16 AM  
Blogger Ginnie said...

As usual, I'm a day late and a dollar short but you probably ARE remembering my post on the
Tibetan prayer flags
.

4:53 PM  
Blogger Mr. Fabulous said...

MP--LOL My pleasure!

Fickle Chick--Gosh, I never thought of that. I hope I don't get voted out of the neighborhood...

Ginnie--I remember that post now. I guess subliminally that's why I thought you would know!

5:45 PM  
Blogger Clo said...

I have to admit I'm a little bit disapointed by the fact that you didn't think of me as a smart, soulful person... :O(

I'm not sure I will ever talk to you again... :O(

Well, have the feeling this is not the first time I say that... :O#

Have you ever see my piggy nose? :@o

BTW, now that we know that those are tibetan prayer flags, could you ask your neighbor WHY he did put those?

Please???????? :O))))))))))

1:34 AM  
Blogger peebugg said...

I have to add more....late..but necessary....

Saw the prayer flags all over Jeff Corwin's deal last night.... Which I might say was a huge disappointment. It was more of a big promo for Disney's new ride than it was the actuall Yeti thing.

But I did see the prayer flags all over.

I do hope it brings luck to your humble adobe.....

12:20 PM  
Blogger JIN said...

I believe those are Tibetan Buddhism flags (or perhaps Hinduism), but I can't be absolute sure since I can't see (clearly on) the manuscript.

2:17 PM  
Blogger Jozee said...

Thanks for the linkage. Where the heck have I been? Oh, yeah Tibet.

3:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

don't forget about "The Thicket"

8:54 AM  

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