The alternate title to the post is "Feeding the Bureaucratic Beast." The saga of my new wall continues. You may recall that I received a "nastygram" from the City saying that I had not obtained a permit for my new wall which was part of the re-landscaping of my front yard. When I went to get a permit I was told I couldn't get one because the wall was not to code. It was 5' high and the limit for walls in the front of a house was 3'. So I started the process to get an exemption to the 3' rule. I then received a follow-up nastygram saying I had a week to comply or would have to see a judge. I had been down this bureaucratic hole before a few years ago and wanted to avoid it at all costs. Back then I had forgot to renew the licenses for our cats. I just blew it off until I received a nastygram from Animal Control saying I HAD to have licenses for the cats. There was a paperwork snafu and it took longer than it should. In the meantime they sent the matter to court. I blew off the court date because the paperwork was just about finished and the court date was during FC. I returned from the con to find that I now had a warrant out for my arrest because I blew off the court appearance. I quickly went to the courthouse and showed them the paperwork. The judge asked why I didn't appear in court and I told her that I was in San Jose. She just said, "Oh! OK!" And that was it. But if I had been pulled over for something, I could have ended up in handcuff and in jail all because my cats didn't have their licenses. Beware the Beast! It is uncaring and defies logic! So to avoid a similar situation with the wall, I decided to placate the Beast in the most logical way. The nastygram stated that the violation was not because of the wall height but because I didn't have a permit. So let's get a permit! The reason why it was rejected the 1st time was because it was 5' high. With a stroke of my pen I made it a 3' wall. Soon I was walking out of the office with permit in paw. The Beast was satiated! It had my paperwork and my application fee. So all is right with the world? Oh, hell no. I simply kicked the can down the road for a few months. Soon the City will probably send an inspector to see the wall. They'll measure it and see that it is in fact 5' and not 3'. I'll then get another nastygram stating that wall is not to code. It will be at that time that I submit my petition to get an exemption. The Beast demands that its meal is served in the proper order. I was going to jump right to the entrée. It demanded its appetizer! So at least I have regained control of the situation. The first nastygram was a complete surprise to me which sent me into a tizzy of worry. Now that I better understand the Beast, the next nastygram will be dealt with quickly and efficiently. In the grand scheme of things, it really doesn't matter. If I submitted my paperwork today, the hearing would be in the middle of September, right when I would be in Europe. So putting off the hearing for a month or 2 would be to my benefit. There is also that off-chance that there will be a totally incompetent inspector who will just sign off on it. A boy can dream, can't he?