My neighbor sat shirtless in his yard on Mother’s Day. He had his vodka, his beer, his sausages, his pork chops, his chicken, and he had found a way to amuse himself.

“There’s nothing wrong with it,” he said. “I’m just saying Happy Mother’s Day.” Then his voice got lower: “I’m just saying it to girls who don’t look like mothers.”

Capitol Hill yesterday was full of such women. Each would seem lost in her thoughts as she strolled past the yards bright with roses. Then the voice would boom out of nowhere: “Happy Mother’s Day!” And she would look up from her reflections and see this big-bellied roofer with demon tattoos grinning at her.

Most of the women just blushed. One of them thanked him but explained that she was not a mother. Then the neighbor began to chant lyrics from the metal band Total War. He performed long enough that I got bored with being told to “burn the church” and “crush the priest.” I was grateful when a new woman passed.

“Happy mother’s day!” he bellowed.

She called back: “Same to you!”