The Ugliest House on the Block

Photo: Foamy stuff. Foamy stuff that dripped from the roof to the ground, leaving a trail of foamy stuff allllllllll the way down the front of the house.


One of our animal neighbors is a woodpecker.


He found a particular spot on the house, just above one of the second-floor windows, and decided to spend the entirety of Thanksgiving weekend working on that spot. His workday started at around 5:30am and, despite all of our efforts, did not stop until nightfall.

The Husband, as you can imagine, hates the woodpecker. He googled many solutions for getting rid of the thing. I went for a Write-in for NaNoWriMo and came back to a house bedazzled with strips of shiny foil hanging from the second-story window that the bird has been assaulting. My house kinda looks like a face from the front. So imagine two glittering teardrops coming from the right eye of my house.

“Baby, we look like crazies,” I said.

“The foil keeps the bird away!” My husband said, sounding all crazy.

The bird was not deterred.

“It’s because the foil doesn’t move all the time!” My crazy husband said.


Yesterday morning, my husband woke up and announced that he was going to go get donuts for breakfast. I didn’t think anything of it: I had a meeting at church anyway. I went downstairs, made some coffee, got myself together… didn’t really notice the extended absence until he came back.

“I have a confession,” he said to me as he came through the door with two boxes of Dunk’s. I raised an eyebrow.

“I bought a BB Gun,” he said.

What? At like 8 in the morning? “Like, when? Yesterday?”

“No, just now.”

This dude seriously picked up a BB Gun with a scope. What? Say what? “Baby, you ain’t gonna hit that bird with no BB gun,” I said.

“You wanna bet?”


I didn’t have to go to church after all (long story) so we decided to use our morning efficiently by making our Costco run. We went and, when we came back, we walked up to the house and saw powder on the ground. It looked like gray snow. “It hasn’t been snowing,” I said to myself as I approached. “Oh shit, that isn’t snow.”

It was insulation.

The persistent pecker had achieved his goal. Little bastard.

“I declare a blood feud with the woodpecker!” My husband said. “The house is under full-on assault!”

I wish you could have seen my face, Dear Reader. It was one of those “look to the sky in lamentation” looks and also “you’re fucking kidding, right?” kind of looks. It’s hilarious and ridiculous and omg stupid woodpecker why?

“But can we fix the hole first?”

So, the hole is super high up there. The house is really tall. We have a ladder, but I’m not convinced it would reach that high, and it’s all at the edge of the house… this all just feels dangerous. So I says to my husband, I says: “Why don’t you go to the attic and see if you can repair it from there?”

It took some poking and prodding and yelling from the bottom of the house to the top, but we located the hole and identified a solution. Spray-foamy stuff. Stuff that will expand in the hole and repair it… at least temporarily.

The Husband got the can and sprayed the stuff and I told him when to stop spraying. The stuff expanded while we watched and then seemed to stop at the edge of the hole.

GREAT SUCCESS! HIGH FIVE!! We celebrated our smartness and ingenuity and once again fixing our own house problems without anyone else because we’re so smart and such great partners and oh yeah we are awesome high five again!

Then The Husband took his new BB Gun and sat in the bushes in front of the house and waited to see if the bird would come back. I made meatballs in the kitchen and played out police scenarios in my mind.

After 30 minutes, he came back inside. No kill. Such disappointed.

The boys, who were kept inside for all of this insanity, were dying to get out there. They’d destroyed the playroom and were tearing up the living room. I was all too happy to boot them out for a bit.

They came back in after about an hour and said: “What’s that weird stuff on the house? Is it poison? It looks like poison.”

What? What weird stuff?

“The stuff on the wall in the front of the house. It got on the ground. We didn’t touch it because we thought it was poison.”

The foamy stuff had expanded so much that it came raining down from the hole, leaving a trail that extended from the top of the house to the bottom. It’s light and noticeable and utterly ugly.

So my house looks like it’s crying after having  popped a particularly juicy pimple.

My husband claims he can’t do anything about it until this weekend. I went out there after dropping the boys off at school and scrapped off what I could reach (it wasn’t that hard). Then I went to the barn and contemplated our ladder. It’s… not a basic ladder. It’s big and heavy and weird. I picked it up and I could get it across the yard, but then what?

So I went to my neighbor’s house and knocked on the door. He knows stuff about ladders and stuff.

No answer. I wonder if he was hiding so as to not be an accomplice in my breaking my neck.

Rain is coming. I wonder if the stuff will wash away or melt and become worse or… what.

Basically, what I’m trying to say is:  I need a new house and it’s my husband’s fault.

Also: I need a new husband.

Also, yes: I realize that this is ultimately the damn woodpecker’s fault.

Fa la la la laaa….

How was your weekend, Dear Reader?

Until Wednesday, happy hunting and take care.


One Comment Add yours

  1. Trish says:

    Oh my. It’s better than a movie. Too many things to comment on. I love that the boys instinct was “weird foamy stuff = likely poison”. Boy Scout training coming in handy? I would have expected them to pick it up and have a snowball fight.

    I’ve declared all out war on bittersweet (a plant) so at least your husband has a thinking enemy. Much less embarrassing than being outwitted by something without a brain.

    I do know some church members who have battled a woodpecker…if you want to share ideas.

    One last thought – is it legal to shoot a woodpecker? I dunno.

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