Can a crazy neighbor, bored building inspectors, and a complacent city government halt a homeowner’s dedicated preservation efforts— and result in criminal noncompliance charges? Apparently so, according to the owner of an old house in Lakewood, OH, a suburb of Cleveland. In a recent posting on her blog, “1914 Foursquare,” the owner, “Nina,” shares the two-year-long saga of her work to restore a 1914 Craftsman-styled Foursquare while dealing with an intolerant neighbor and a local bureaucracy that seems as inept as it is callous. She reportedly enjoys the support the local historical society, the Cleveland Restoration Society, and all of her other neighbors, yet the owner has received sporadic notices and citations and has made several trips to court in defense of her right to restore her house at (what seems like) a perfectly reasonable pace. Despite vague regulations that make enforcement seemingly arbitrary, “Nina” has supplied ample documentation, including before & after photos, to prove the progress she has made. But to no avail. Allegedly, a couple of officials have even privately pledged support, but then failed to follow through or intervene. So she has gone public with her plea for common sense. From the looks of her blog’s “Comments” section, the owner is apparently attracting support from preservation folks like John Leeke and Bob Yapp, but the issue is unresolved and the owner has requested that sympathetic citizens email her local authorities in her defense. Read the owner’s long (and frustrating) story here.