Grrr! Nothing but the Grrr!

Summer's Here and the Time Is Right for Grrring in the Streets

I'm guilty of having too many power lawn tools. I have a John Deere that's a combination weed whacker (equipped with my trusty Aero-Flex head), hedge trimmer and leaf blower. I also own a Craftsman ride-on lawn tractor and a Honda lawn mower.

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Needless to say, my weekend warrior antics are loud. But listen, folks, I don't start working on my lawn before 10 a.m.!

Some people out there just start their engines way too early. There's nothing more Grrring then the neighborhood Oblivion who's blowing leaves and mowing grass at 7:30 in the morning.

I know you've got a 9 a.m. tee time, but give me a Grrring break, dude!

And then there's the guy who's been practicing his Fourth of July fireworks show ever since Memorial Day. I know it's safer to get the routine down before you've got a crowd of relatives in town, but enough is enough. Stick that bottle rocket where the sun don't shine.

As if lawn care and fireworks aren't enough, I've got a friend whose neighbor installed speakers under the eaves in the back of his house, so he and his family can enjoy their native music from Armenia — loudly, I might add.

I keep telling my bud to call the cops, but he doesn't want to upset the neighborly "kwan" (as Rod Tidwell from "Jerry Maguire" would say). If you ask me, the "kwan" has already been upset, so he might as well go for it.

Why is it OK for our neighbors to get away with un-neighborly behavior, but if we make a move to correct it, we feel bad? The Oblivions have us by the you know whats, that's why.

For those of you unlucky enough to live anywhere near a beach, you've probably noticed your supermarket is in shambles.

All the good cold cuts and meat are gone. There are shopping carts strewn all over the parking lots. There's no more milk or eggs for crying out loud, and forget about the lines. They're epic.

Whenever people are "on vacation," they seem to turn into bigger Oblivions than they are when they're home. When did the word "vacation" become synonymous with "rude"?

I went to a fancy Jersey Shore restaurant on Memorial Day with the family and the in-laws, and it was like a combat zone. It was sheer bedlam. First of all, the kitchen was in the weeds, and our poor waitress was on the verge of tears.

But the noise level was at an all-time high.

No, I'm not a prude, and I'm not the guy screaming "get off my lawn" either. I'm even becoming sympathetic toward Paris Hilton these days.

But there is a time and place for everything. Just because you and your little monsters have a long weekend doesn't mean you can behave like a moron.

Have some consideration. Now go and enjoy the summer. It's too short.

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Mike Straka is the director of operations and special projects for, and covers entertainment and features on the Sunday program "FOX Magazine." He also writes the weekly Grrr! Column and hosts "The Real Deal" video segments on