the original kStyle blog.

Sunday, January 22, 2006

Wow, I Really Can't Sleep

The neighbor noise has become unbearable, and tonight it's coming from above and below.

Above: STOMP STOMP STOMP (floor: sqeeeaaaak squeeeaaaaaaaak squeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeeaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaK) STOMP STOMP runrun run run STOMP

Below: (obnoxious videogame music getting louder and louder as they become drunker and drunker) DUDE, FUUUCK! Aw. WHOA!, etc.

I tried ignoring it, focusing on my breathing. At one o'clock, I went downstairs and politely asked the young men to turn down the volume of their game. They did, and apologized, but the yelling continued. The upstairs neighbors--Well, that's been a full-out WAR lately. Our polite dual-language requests for peace have fallen upon deaf ears. (I PRAY for deaf ears for myself.) We've resorted to very maturely banging on the ceiling with a broom handle, hoping to "train" them by punishing them while they're in the act, so that they make the connection: like poorly behaved cats and water spray bottles. They, in turn, stomp back, aggressively. I actually wished them dead for a moment tonight.

Just for a moment.

Really. I swear.

So, tonight I didn't bother with the ceiling-hitting, knowing it would be futile, and moreover wake the peacefully slumbering G., who is exhausted from PhD quals and therefore sleeping through Armageddon.

I tried meditating, treating meridians involved with sleep, and pretending the surround-sound noise was a sort of postmodern symphony. I visualized a Dutch windmill lazily whirring round and round in a field of nodding tulips, a trick that never failed to lull me to sleep as a child. I began to feel that my grasp of the elusive thread of Sanity was slipping. I had a conversation with God a la Jimmy Stewart at the end of It's a Wonderful Life: Lord, I've never been a praying man... Then I resorted to begging and pleading with the Almighty, in that way usually only a stomach bug with violent vomiting can cause. I abandoned that tack and got up to soothe myself with warm soy milk and a slice of buttery rye toast.

I realized then that I was working in the wrong paradigm for myself. I asked, WWBD? What would Buddha do? Probably meditate some more. Okay, smarty pants, so what would a Taoist Immortal do?

The answer was clear: feng shui.

Thanks to the miracle of Google and the World Wide Web,* I found a wide range of solutions to noisy neighbors and for attaining a peaceful night's rest. Now you'll excuse me while I place a bunch of mirrors facing upwards and downwards, to reflect their noisy qi back at them.

Note the post time.


*brought to you courtesy of Al Gore


Blogger Eric said...

My sympathies are with you, K. Actually I've been enduring something similar of late, though to a lesser degree: the new upstairs neighbors insist on wearing their shoes in their hardwood-floor apartment, leaving me to hear their clomp-clomp-clomp below in mine. If you have any suggestions from this "World Wide Web" you speak of and could pass them along, I'd be glad to have them.

(I tried the "introduce myself and inform them politely that the noise was becoming a problem" route. They apologized and kept on clompin'.)

11:33 AM  
Blogger Lah said...

Hey--Long time no comment (from me). Anyways, I feel your pain. We don't have neighbors above or below anymore, but we have a really loud family on one side of us. After going through all of the various stages of trying to negotiate, being passive-agressive and whatnot, I now just keep multiple pairs of earplugs in each room and daydream of sometime in the future when I can afford my own ranch on 10 acres in Big Sur.

But if the feng Shui works, please pass on the secrets of what you did here!

12:46 PM  
Blogger kStyle said...

Thanks for the sympathy, Eric. I send sympathy back.

Lah! How you been, girl? I thought about ear plugs, but I hate having things in my ears.

9:30 PM  
Blogger kStyle said...

PS My current feng shui plan is as follows:

1. I'm decluttering our condo, esp. the bedroom, where the noise bothers me most. The idea being, all the clutter is "noisy" energy, which will attract more noisy energy.

2. I bought a few of those little "blind spot" mirrors--the little round ones with the stick tape on the back. I stuck one on the bottom of a nightstand, pointing down to the apartment below, and two at high locations, pointing toward the upstairs apartment. The idea is to protect us from any energy the neighbors put out. One must be very careful to apply the use of outward-facing mirrors with the correct intention, though! The idea is NOT to reflect bad qi back at the neighbors put out, but to create harmony and protect us from their qi. Used with the wrong intention, they say, this stuff can bite back.

3. We're going to look into getting a little fountain for the bedroom. Hopefully we can find one that sounds soothing without making us have to pee.

Meantime, I've ordered a book on feng shui & emailed an acquaintance well-versed in the art for advice. Will keep you posted...

9:37 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

Oh, yuck. I hate loud noise in general; it's particularly crankifying when you're trying to sleep.

We run a fan in our bedroom for the white noise and air circulation (plus we find we sleep better when it's a little chilly). Perhaps that might help, too?

11:28 AM  
Blogger kStyle said...

Crankifying! Great word.

I'm not such a fan (heh) of the white noise, but perhaps it would be better than the not-white noise.

12:22 PM  
Blogger Andy Hunter said...

You go! I hate noisy qi!

By the way, if that doesn't work, you can always plan to move, and on the last day before you do, when your stuff is already packed, weaken the ceiling where they most often stomp with a little cordless drill action. Then right before you lock up, hit that ceiling right underneath their feet, and watch a very confused Nike plummet through the roof.

12:53 PM  
Blogger kStyle said...

Welcome, Andy! I like your idea, except that we own our sweet little condo, which would make moving a huge hassle. Sadly, we're sandwiched by condos that the owners rent out to noisy people.

1:15 PM  
Blogger Ann said...

Hmmm. I like the idea of sabotage a little too much...

12:32 AM  
Blogger CuteCat said...

I have a problem about noises in the kitchen from the neighbours in the upstairs.
What kind of Feng Shui should I use to stop totally the noises which they make in the kitchen.

4:55 AM  

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