Those who know me well know of my venomous hatred of home owners' associations. "Plan Bee" was inspired by the baffling denial of a request by my neighborhood home owners' association made by a potential homeowner. All he wanted to do was keep bees on his property. The city and county allow it. The association's denial probably nixed the sale of the property he wanted to purchase.
I grew up in upstate New York in a neighborhood not dissimilar to the one in Kanas where I live now. There was no home owners' association, but everyone kept up their properties and minded their own business. It was live and let live. I knew all my neighbors. One of them, Mr. Tweedie, one day decided to keep bees as a hobby. All the neighborhood children, including me, were fascinated by this. It was not dangerous in the least, and we all learned something about animal husbandry, bees, and where honey comes from. Not to mention, we all enjoyed the best honey in town and had some of the prettiest flowers.
Now I live in an unfriendly, stab-you-in-the-back, miserable Kansas neighborhood. My neighbors routinely rat me out to the home owners' association for various stupid reasons. I don't know my neighbors that well and don't really care to. The home owners' association has bred an uneasy society of paranoia and distrust.
In "Plan Bee," my hero, Mr. Apibus, has his revenge on his home owners' association after he is denied his request to keep bees on his property. His revenge is as sweet as honey and as horrifying of an angry swarm of Africanized bees.
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