The Emoji House Feud: Woman Paints House Bright Pink With Emojis As Retaliation

A woman from Manhattan Beach, California, was reported to the city by her neighbors for illegally renting her house out as an Airbnb. In what some nearby residents are calling an act of revenge, she painted the house bright pink and featured two giant yellow emojis on the front.

Frustrated homeowners and renters in the El Porto neighborhood raised their concerns again at a City Council meeting Tuesday night, marking the latest chapter of a saga that began in May, reported by Easy Reader News.

The home-owner, Kathryn Kidd, was originally fined $4,000 for violating rental laws. Shortly after that in late May, she painted her home with the garish design.

She told Easy Reader on August 1 that the purpose of the fuchsia backdrop, which was done by the local artist known as Z the Art, was just to brighten up everyone's day:

"Instead of everybody being so gloomy, always so depressed, always in other people's business, I just wanted to send a message to be happy, be colorful, be positive, and enjoy. Everything doesn't have to be gray. It can be full of colors. Life is full of rainbows. I get tired of looking at gloomy buildings so I do something that makes me smile and probably makes someone else smile, too. That was my inspiration."

Z the Art posted a photo of the painted home to his Instagram account in May with the hashtags #TheEmojiHouse and #eyelashextensions.

"Are your neighbors constantly ratting you out? Have they cost you thousands in fines? Have you wanted to tell them off lately?" Z the Art's Instagram post said. "Why risk a case, when you can hire me to paint them a pretty message? No verbal confrontations, speedy turnaround, open to photorealism and custom emojis. Hit the dm for a free quote today."

The particular mocking nature of the house, neighbors said to the Los Angeles Times, is in the emojis. An emoji on the duplex's top floor shows one smiling face with its tongue sticking out and eyes looking in different directions, topped off by long eyelashes. Another on the lower level shares the same eyes and lashes but has a zipper across the mouth, representing the "shut up" emoji. Susan Wieland, the neighbor who reported Kidd, told Easy Reader News on August 1 that she was wearing eyelash extensions when she once met Kidd and sees this as a dig at her.

Manhattan Beach emoji war: Kathryn Kidd was reported by her neighbors for illegally using her home for short-term rentals. Then her house was painted pink with emojis. She said it wasn't retaliation but some residents say the emoji war is not over

— ABC7 Eyewitness News (@ABC7) August 3, 2019

Kidd told Easy Reader News in response that the emojis were not intended to mock Wieland and that although people were entitled to their opinions, she was not in violation of any laws.

"I'm trying not to offend anybody," Kidd said on August 1. "I did it for the purpose of being happy, being positive, and I think it's cute and quirky and kind of funny, and certainly was a time for the emoji."

Wieland said that although the situation might seem like a joke to Kidd, it's not funny to residents who feel the city is doing nothing to protect them. She said neighbors had sent letters and numerous emails to city officials in the hope that some action would be taken over the exterior of the house.

Angry Emoji
A student holds up a sign with an angry emoticon to protest against the education policy of the government at the parliament building in Budapest, on January 19, 2018. (ATTILA KISBENEDEK/AFP/Getty Images)

In a video of a July 10 meeting on the issue, City Attorney Mike Estrada explained to commission members that the city had "very little, if any" jurisdiction over murals painted on private property with no public funding or public involvement.