Wednesday, April 24, 2013

A to Z: Ugly Urban Utilities

First, another note on "Defiance" and catching up
They were supposed to publish the "Defiance" preview yesterday, but didn't get to it until today. So here's my preview, along with the first four minutes of next Monday's episode! Also, I'm going to be catching up on comments a bit here and there until the weekend, and especially the end of the month, when I'll be able to catch up on everything. I'll get to commenters on my own articles first, then work my way to everyone else. I really appreciate all the comments and awards and such! I'll be putting up the awards and nominating others soon too! Thanks!

Now, for those ugly utilities
I grew up part of my life on a farm, and one thing I took for granted was the natural beauty of everything. We didn't have any utilities. We had a well and a generator, and built our own water system. We could make our self-made utilities look as nice as we wanted them to look. Even now, living on 3/4 of an acre, there is a nice amount of nature outside my door. Except when I look up at the side of my house and see all the gross looking wires and boxes.

I know some people get to have underground electrical wires, but I get to have these disgusting wires hanging right over the middle of my yard. After some high winds (which we have all the time around here), those wires are now three feet closer to the ground. I can actually reach up and touch them now!

And then there are all the ugly telephone poles. The only thing good about them is the cute little woodpeckers that like to peck at the sides of them. One of the woodpeckers is Woody. He's got the red topknot and everything. Once in a while, a ginormous crow will sit right on top of one of them and give it a few good pecks as well. I hope they peck it right to the ground. Well, not really. They do serve a purpose other than being ugly.

Then there is the ugly Verizon FIOS box, sitting prominently right on the side of my house. Why do they give you such a big, ugly, off-white box? They give you awesome cable and Internet service, so why can't their box look awesome too? For the prices you pay, that box should be fully customizable.

This ugly box isn't even hidden on the back of the house. It's right on the side of the house, where we have our lovely patio set up with nice outdoor furniture. It's right outside the back door. And it's so big!

And don't even get me started on the new "Smart Meter" electrical box, installed by the town. Yeah, it's really smart at blowing out three surge protector strips. I just learned today that I'm not crazy. I was on the phone with Verizon setting up a new box, and they said that they've heard of many other similar cases, and that they probably won't do anything about it until a few houses burn down. Nice. I would love to shove that stupid -- sorry, "smart" -- thing up their you-know-whats!

The water meter isn't the worst thing in the world, except that it must remain accessible, and is an ugly piece of concrete in the middle of my otherwise unbroken natural landscape. You'd think by now they could come up with a better way to do all this metering in an easier, less ugly way. At the very least, they could make these meters and such look cool. They don't have to be gorgeous or anything.

It would also be nice if the buildings where you pay your utility bills, and that provide the utilities, were not so ugly either. I don't think I've ever seen a nice utility building. Why can't they at least come up with a pleasant building that blends into the area, instead of a monstrosity of an eyesore?

14 comments:

  1. Hello, Kristen! Lovely to meet you! This is my first visit to your blog via the A to Z challenge and I just wanted to pop in and say hi. So hi!

    We have our own little collection ugly boxes and wires for our electrical and cable on the side of our house. But every house i've ever lived in has had an ugly electrical meter on it somewhere, I think that's just sort-of the way the cookie crumbles.

    See you around the web!
    Beverly
    http://bev-thebevelededge.blogspot.com/

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    1. Yes, everyone has them. I just decided to use them as a writing opportunity, ha! But I think most people would agree that they don't look very good either. :)

      Thanks for stopping by!

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  2. We have the same collection. Should we have an "Ugly box-blogfest?" HI, Thanks for visiting my blog, and I loved your comment.

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    1. Yes. I will make a new Ugly-Box Blog Hop right away! On second thought, who wants to see more of these ugly things? hehe :)

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  3. Haha. Well beauty does lie in the eyes of the beholder so maybe we could all just pretend that those ^ up there are the most gorgeous things on the planet and who knows, maybe we'll set a trend! :)

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    1. If the ugly came with awesome service, I would fall in love with it. I just wish their service wasn't as ugly as the utilities. haha

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  4. Hello, Kristen! As long as it doesn't interfere with anything, I'm sure there are artists somewhere who can make these uglies look pretty with paint. It might be something to try!

    Happy A to Z-ing! from Laura Marcella @ Wavy Lines

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    1. I don't think you're allowed to alter them. You definitely are not allowed to cover them in any way that makes them not easily accessible. I know I sound upset, but I was half-joking. All this stuff is ugly, but I'm not that bent out of shape about it. Only a little bit. :) Thanks for stopping by!

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  5. Hi Kristen, I love all the naming and shaming. You should take a picture of woody and post it for W tomorrow, I'd like to see him:)

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    1. I wanted to try, but he's so tiny and far away when he's up there. I know I won't be able to get a good picture with my phone. I was going to grab my nice camera and try again, but it may take awhile to get a good picture. Thanks for stopping by!

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  6. LOL. I laughed the entire time I was reading your post. Those utility lines are ugly. We live in a neighborhood with large lots, all more than an acre, and all our lines are underground. We do have the ugly boxes on our house though.

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    1. I'm so glad you got my sarcastic humor in there. :) Thank you, and thanks for stopping by!

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  7. Ugh! I agree, very unsightly. The only thing that can be said about wires, if I must, is that at least pretty birds sit on 'em!
    I envy you, growing up on a farm.

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  8. I'm so with you... Why can't they be more aesthetically pleasing. We take pride in our homes, so the least they can do something on their end.

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