Thursday, October 9, 2008

The Absurdity of it All

I live in an old building. There are creaks and thin walls and single paned windows. I can hear the foghorns from the boats in the Bay when it's foggy out. I can hear the ringing of the cable cars and the #27 bus rolling down my street every 20 min or so. And each time I hear a car alarm go off? Makes me think they should be banned in the city when owners park their cars blocks from their apartments and don't even hear the alarm going off. And the garbage truck? Don't get me started.

So yes. There are plenty of city noises surrounding me. And that doesn't even scratch the surface. My downstairs neighbor? Huge radio person. Loves her NPR. Which is great, but she blares it so loud, that I can hear it from my apartment. And the woman above me? Single mom. Her son, who's probably about 5 is like any other normal child. Runs a lot, has this ball he's always bouncing up and down. Cute kid. Good upstairs neighbor? Probably not.

I'm not complaining. I've learned to live with it, and for the most part? Everyone in the building is pretty quiet. No real ragers or loud music, or even a lot of people coming in and out. Mostly all working professionals all with fairly normal hours.

Well, you wouldn't have known it if you witnessed what happened to me Sat morning. I had a friend in town, and she was coming by to drop off her bags at my apartment and then we were heading out for a day of sightseeing. When she arrived, I buzzed her up, but then walked out my door, intending to head down to help her carry things up the two flights of stairs. As I did, I was 'greeted' by my crazy downstairs neighbor. She was pissed.

She started yelling at me, complaining that I was too loud and woke her up last night. She claims I was pacing back and forth and purposely making noise above her bed. She even accused me of exercising late and waking her up.

Now first. If you're going to complain to your neighbor, wouldn't you at least try to speak to them in a calm manner? She was literally yelling at me.

Second. Me? Exercise late at night? Clearly she doesn't me. I did get in late the night before. And after the day I had, the second I got home, I was ready for bed. Late night exercise? That's just nuts.

In terms of the pacing and being loud over her bed, I don't even know where her bed is in the apartment. Purposely pacing and 'being loud' over someone's bed? I don't think so.

Now. These walls are thin, so I'm sure she does hear me. But I'm also sure that I'm pretty considerate. And I really don't know how I could even be more quiet. I take off my shoes the second I get in--why wear heels any longer than you need to when you have fuzzy slippers waiting for you?

And pacing? If you count going to the kitchen for a glass of water and then going to the bathroom 'pacing', then fine. I pace. She's going to have to deal with it.

And umm, after standing in the kitchen for 8 hours after a 7 hour work day in the office, the second I made it home, all I wanted to do was sleep. I had no time to think about anything else.

We have hardwood floors in the building. And me? I've got hall runners and little carpets in my room, purposely trying to minimize the noise. I work, and really don't have too many really late nights. When I do? I am SO QUIET in fear that I'll wake up and have a run-in with The Evil Witch of the First Floor.

I've never thrown a huge party here, I don't play loud music, and I'm usually in bed by 10 doing work on my laptop, watching TV or reading. And get up early? Hah! Again, you clearly don't know me!

So now what? What do I do? Maybe I'll be extra loud during the day so that she knows how loud it can actually be. Maybe I'll throw a party and play loud music. I will continue to be polite when it's early or late, but the next time I see her? I'm NOT letting her yell at me again. I'm NOT going to apologize. Karma's gonna get her--when I move out, she'll probably still be living here, and I have a hunch that the next person in here? Is going to be a party animal, who works late, comes home at odd hours, brings home friends all the time, and is even meaner than she is.

No comments:

Post a Comment