1. Pairs of tennis shoes thrown over the electrical lines.
“Pairs of tennis shoes thrown over the electrical lines.”
2. Broken shards of glass in the parking lot.
“Ghetto diamonds. See broken shards of glass in the parking lot? Those are from thieves crow-barring your car windows, not bad driving.”
3. Murals of 19 y/o males wearing haloes.
“You start seeing murals of 19 y/o males wearing haloes.”
4. Pit bulls everywhere.
“Here in the UK look out for –
• Men or women drinking special brew in the morning.
• Men with Staffordshire Bull terriers everywhere.
• Cars with loud exhausts and even louder Soundsystems.
• Beach towels used as curtains in houses.
• Settees in front gardens.
• Armies of young mums pushing prams with an infant inside clutching a Greg’s sausage roll.
• Men in tracksuit bottoms and rock port boots
• People clearly under the effects of the drug spice (spice zombies).”
5. Multiple burned-down houses.
“Bars on windows is a pretty decent indicator, but those are neighborhoods that are okay in the daylight.
Boarded up houses are much worse.
Even worse multiple burned-down houses. Those are the neighborhoods you don’t want to be in at all.”
6. Random garbage everywhere.
“Random garbage everywhere. You’ll see it all over any open lots, the side of the street, collected on fences like a filter because of the wind, etc. I live pretty close to the West Side of Chicago. When I drive around it’s a pretty clear sign things are starting to get sketchy.”
7. Locks on things that normally don’t have locks on them.
“Seeing locks on things that normally don’t have locks on them: mailboxes, air conditioning units, candy bar racks.”
8. Indoor furniture outside.
“Indoor furniture outside.”
9. Paper roses in glass at gas station registers.
“Seeing paper roses in glass at gas station registers. These paper roses get pulled out and you’ve got yourself a handy dandy crack pipe. Me, not knowing any better, bought one for my 2nd grade girlfriend.”
10. An adult man on a child’s BMX bike is slowly riding in the middle of the street.
“An adult man on a child’s BMX bike slowly riding in the middle of the street.”
11. Lots of Dollar Stores, payday loan, and title-loan places.
“Lots of Dollar Stores, payday loan, and title-loan places. No or few actual grocery stores.”
12. A dude is walking around the street naked asking strangers if they wanted to touch his weewee.
“In my neighborhood someone posted on nextdoor that they woke up to someone standing over their bed.
Then 2 days later someone else posted that a dude was walking around the street naked asking strangers if they wanted to touch his weewee.
Oh and car theft is so common that I no longer lock my car because it’s financially smarter for me to let them have a look around than to pay for any more broken windows.
I might be in a bad neighborhood.”
13. Random shopping carts on the side of the road.
“Random shopping carts on the side of the road.”
14. Pizza places won’t deliver to your house.
“Pizza places won’t deliver to your house/apartment/neighborhood.”
15. Boost Mobile.
“Boost Mobile next to a checkcashing place.”
16. It’s the middle of the afternoon on a weekday and people are just hanging out on porches and yards.
“It’s the middle of the afternoon on a weekday and people are just hanging out on porches and yards, just walking around. It’s a neighborhood with a lot of unemployment. If you are looking to rent or buy, visit in the middle of the work day and at night to see what it’s like.”
17. Random businesses with cages on the doors and windows.
“Corner stores and random businesses with cages on the doors and windows. Advertising is usually painted on the wall or something, and you see ads for really cheap foods and drinks that usually aren’t big product names. Also there are potholes everywhere and random fences tend to be driven into and not fixed. Also where I live in the lower the street number the worse the neighborhood. Also random groups of guys gathered outside of random corner stores. Oh and if there are fast food places with nowhere to sit that’s also how you know.”
18. Bars/bulletproof glass on gas-station windows, and they don’t let anyone in the store past a certain time.
“Bars/bulletproof glass on gas-station windows, and they don’t let anyone in the store past a certain time, you can only walk up to the window.”
19. It’s 2:00 AM and you see groups of what appear to be twelve-year-olds loitering around.
“When it’s 2:00 AM and you see groups of what appear to be twelve-year-olds loitering around.”
20. You see a forty-year-old man in the middle of the street dancing, wearing a Burger King crown.
“You see a forty-year-old man in the middle of the street dancing, wearing a Burger King crown and there isn’t a Burger King in sight. Also, it’s the middle of the day.”
21. Convenience stores with ‘WE TAKE EBT’ signs in handwritten letters.
“Bail bonds offices, hair braiding salons, payday loans on the same street.
Convenience stores with ‘WE TAKE EBT’ signs in handwritten letters.
Weekly-rate ‘budget’ motels.
Gas station locks its doors at 10 PM. If you want cigarettes, drinks, or snacks late at night, you have to tell the cashier what you want and she’ll deliver it to you through a hole in a bulletproof glass window.”
22. Neighbors keep having a yard sale every week and the stuff they’re selling belongs in the trash.
“Neighbors keep having a yard sale every week and the stuff they’re selling belongs in the trash and no one would pay money for it. oh, and there’s a toilet on the front porch.
23. “Street lights shot out.
“Street lights shot out to make some blocks extra dark at night.”
24. Houses have chain link fences around it with either ‘Beware of Dog’ or ‘No Trespassing’ signs.
“Metro PCS store, check cashing store, mini mart with no gas station that’s completely empty, Cedar Market (a check cashing mini mart! Double whammy!), Kennedy/Crown Fried Chicken, restaurants or stores with bars over the windows, school has police cars around it every day, houses have chain link fences around it with either ‘Beware of Dog’ or ‘No Trespassing’ signs, old houses and tenement apartments begin to appear when you go deeper in the city, and finally: shoes hanging on a telephone wire.”
25. The vibe…oftentimes it’s one wrong turn and you are in the middle of it.
“The vibe… that’s the best answer.
I was in Columbus driving once and ended up in one of those neighborhoods. Oftentimes it’s one wrong turn and you are in the middle of it. In my case I recognized it fast enough, but there weren’t many good opportunities to turn the car around without the potential of getting blocked in. Scary feeling when you know you are in the middle of that.”