An Open Letter to My Neighbors (My Neighbor Saga Part 1)

Dear Neighbors,
My couch is vibrating from the baseline of your horrible oompa loompa music. 

From what I can hear, this “music” consists of two only slightly different notes played in rapid succession.  Every so often, this insanity-provoking monotony will be broken by a string of different notes which are also repeated incessantly.   It sounds like this:

Ding, dong, ding, dong, ding, dong, ding, dong, (slight, almost imperceptible change in pitch) bing, bang, bing, bang, (change the pitch back again because we couldn’t possibly have had enough of the ding donging) ding, dong, ding, dong, ding, dong, ding, dong, bing, bang, bing, bang, ding, dong, bing, bang, ding, dong, bing, bang, bloop, bloop, bloop, bloop, bloop, bloop, bloop (oh shit, now it is just one single repeating note!) bloop, bloop, bloop, bloop, bloop, bloop, bloop…

This is the kind of music that enters your ear and then proceeds to gnaw a hole in your brain until you can no longer feel feelings. But it doesn’t just go into my ears, does it? Your base is turned up so loud that your music infests my entire body . It is the musical equivalent of being molested.  Please don’t do this to me, it makes me quite uncomfortable.

I have recently discovered that your stereo is not your only means of musically raping me.  

I am talking about you, Insomniac Musician Neighbor.  You stay up until the wee hours of the morning, making incomprehensible noise from what I assume is a guitar.  

You also sing. And I am assuming that you are singing as loud as possible to hear yourself over your guitar. I also assume that you are failing at that last endeavor, because if you were able to hear yourself, you would not be singing. I am not saying this to be mean, but you seriously sound like a cross between a fog horn and a chainsaw. There is no pitch involved when you sing. In fact, it seems that your main goal is to simply be as loud as possible.

While I appreciate the enthusiasm and heart you have exhibited in your craft, it is not conducive to my life and my goals when you practice your art form at 2:00 AM with that kind of ferocity.

“Yellow Submarine” does not need to be remade. If you absolutely cannot suppress your desire to remake this song, please at least learn the rest of the words. I agree that the chorus of this song may be one of the greatest miracles LSD has ever produced, but it is much less awesome when you sing it - in a drunken stupor - 718 times in a row (this really is not that large of an exaggeration!)

Also, it was really creepy that time you knocked on my door and invited yourself in to sit awkwardly on my couch. It was 10:00 PM. I was in skimpy pajamas. You smelled like beer-sweat and failure. And I will have you know that you thwarted my best attempts at conversation. I really didn’t know what to do with you sitting in my living room like that, looking around like you were planning where you were going to stash me when you cut me into pieces. I tried to keep it light. We talked about pets and siblings and how many of each you and I had. I tried to stretch it out: “Does your brother have a middle name?” but your presence outlasted my every pleasantry. Despite my valiant efforts to keep the conversation breezy, you artfully steered it in the direction of your personal problems. Please, please, please for the love of God, don’t do this to people! I really don’t know what to say when you are telling me about how your girlfriend dumped you and you can’t find a job and you broke your foot so now you can only find salvation through your music. I DON’T EVEN KNOW YOU!!! All I know about you is that you like to “sing” a lot and “play the guitar” a lot and I guess now I know that you are depressed - which, by the way, is making me feel like a terrible person for beaming hatred at you when you choose to do either of the other two things I know about you at an inappropriate hour. I remember saying “I am sorry that happened to you” a lot. Apparently this was a mistake because…

…Now, whenever you see me passing by the front of the apartment complex we share, you stop me for therapy-time. This happens at the worst possible times. Like when my arms are full of embarrassing groceries or when I have to pee really bad, or (my favorite) the time you intercepted me after I’d walked 2 miles home from campus in the bitter cold and wind, thinking the whole time about how I was only 10 minutes from my warm house… now only 7… now only 2 and finally only 30 seconds - the warmth of my domicile was easily within reach when you leered out of the shadows with a breathy “how’s it goin’?”

Me: “Good,” (I lied, and with horrible grammar!)

You: “Nice walk?”

Me: “Yeah” (I lied again)

You: “I would go for a walk, but I busted up my foot again. It sucks.”

Me: “I am sorry to hear that.” (I can see the warm lights in my window and all I want to do is be in there, out of the frigid windy cold away from you. What are you DOING lurking out here anyway??)

You: “yeah, I’ve been kind of depressed about the whole thing.”

Me: “I’m sorry.”

You: “It’s okay. At least I have my music, right?”

Me: “Yeah, at least you have that.”

You: “I wrote a new song...”

Me: “Fantastic!”

You: …… (stands in awkward silence)

Me: “Whelp. I have to get inside before I catch my death out here.” (Why is it that I always rely on old-timer expressions to avoid awkward moments?)

You: “Good talkin’ with you.”

Me: “Yep, have a good night!” 

(That was an abridged version of an actual conversation you and I had. Our conversations are usually tragically longer than this, but you can get a rough idea of what I go through when you ambush me like that.)

Once I am reasonably sure I have exited the conversation without being rude to you or trampling on your feelings, I escape as quickly as possible, which is not very quickly because usually my keys choose to get stuck or buried at the bottom of my purse and you are still standing there staring at me expectantly, which only makes me fumble with my keys more, because, frankly, I am starting to panic.

I FINALLY claw my way into my nice warm apartment, deadbolting the door behind me.  And then the oompa loompa music starts…


melissa said...

Oh my god, I have a scary neighbor like this! He's a rastafarian (seriously) and he's kinda old and skeevy and really creepy.

He knocked on my door one time and tried to give me a manicure. I answered the door with a nail file in my hand and he tried to take it from me so he could do my nails. No thanks! Now I get really creeped out every time I see him walk by the window and I try to hide and hope he won't knock on the door.

BL said...

Dearest Allie,

I feel like you and I could be soul mates. You're pretty much documenting my life. I'm sitting at work and failing at being an adult. I have literally done nothing the past 2 weeks except for read your entire blog, watch Avatar: The Last Airbender (the tv show, not the movie), and eat raw vegetables, fruit, and fast food because I don't know how to go to the store like a normal person. Grocery stores perplex me. That's not an exaggeration.

Thank you for brightening my day and making me laugh hysterically at my desk. I think I mostly kept it under control, but that picture about going to the "mother fucking bank like an adult" resonated too strongly and I burst out laughing. Other than that it was just suppressed snickers. I don't think anyone noticed.

Continue being awesome and winning the internet.

lynnielou said...

I'm gutted. I have found my way back to your first post! There is no "older post" link.... does this mean I HAVE TO WORK??? Shit.