There's trouble afoot in Hillsborough, California. Trouble of the ugly home variety, and one home owner's obsession with the Flintstones is to blame.
Everyone has probably had their own unfortunate experiences with crummy neighbors. If you rent and live in an apartment building, you more than likely have had someone living above you who had an affinity for shoes made out of concrete.
If you live in suburbia, there's always that one guy who just won't stop their dogs from pooping on other people's lawns, or a group of local degenerates who think Tuesdays at 2 a.m. is a great time for either a shouting match or a house party pumping out horrible music.
But have you ever had a neighbor who offended you simply because their taste in exterior home decor was just so abominable it lowered the value of your own home? That's what happened to neighbors of a home in Hillsborough, California. Affectionately dubbed "The Flintstones House," this cartoon-creation-come-to-life was such an eyesore, the town of Hillsborough filed a lawsuit against owner Florence Fang.
Florence Fang might sound like a cartoon villain who wears lion pelts, and her choice in home design is just as eccentric and tragically full of flair. In addition to the Flintstones-Push-Pop inspired color scheme and structures that look like they belong more in The Lorax than real life, she's really driven the Yabba Dabba Doo element home. She literally has Yabba Dabba spelled out on her lawn.
If that wasn't enough to communicate her love for the prehistoric cartoon version of the Honeymooners, Florence also decked out her front lawn entirely in dinosaurs, animal statues, and other weird little lawn ornaments. The "lawn" itself looks like Astroturf and something that any kid would love to play on on a daily basis. I mean she's got a spinosaurus, a triceratops, a mastodon, and a brachiosaurus in her yard.
While I personally think her neighbors should be the ones getting sued for being so darn lame and not appreciating the great wonder on their block, the town ultimately has the law on its side. They allege Fang doesn't possess nor did she seek the appropriate permits for her unique property.
According to the lawsuit, as reported by the San Francisco Chronicle, Fang "created live-safety hazards that required immediate correction to protect visitors to the property."
This isn't the first time Fang's "eyesores" have caused a ruckus. The San Mateo Daily Journal reports the Hillsborough building department has issued citations, $200 in fines, and stop orders to the homeowner for her unwelcome additions to the property. The department claimed the "enhancements" to her wacky estate were "designed to be very intrusive, resulting in the owner's 'vision' for her property being imposed on many other properties and views, without regard to the desires of other residents."
Fang paid that penalty, but she didn't do anything to change her home and I don't see why she should. The businesswoman, former publisher of the San Francisco Examiner, and philanthropist is a wildly successful woman who carved out an amazingly multi-faceted career for herself. I personally think the town's picking a fight with the wrong woman. She's also said she has no intention of backing down, which I think is bad news for anyone opposing her.
Look, anyone who's crazy enough to live in a home like that means business. She's clearly not dumb, either. The woman ran a newspaper and is an insanely successful power broker. Florence's grandson, Sean, backed up her decision to keep the dinosaurs and says they have no intention of removing them. "I think the dinosaurs are beautiful. They make everyone smile and should stay."
I have to agree with Sean here. Everyone should be chasing that wild and crazy enthusiastic kid they were when they were younger. We allow the world to beat it out of us without much of a fight. It's amazing to me to see something out of Pee Wee's Playhouse become a reality. I'm personally siding with Florence on this one. Eat dirt, Hillsborough.