Wednesday, January 9, 2008

The Neighbors

I'm on the second floor of a two-floor apartment complex. Some months ago, new neighbors moved in downstairs. They have one kid, maybe three to five years old. Just about every evening, the kid goes mental and starts running around, screaming and yelling, and banging around. Daddy doesn't seem to be much help. Sometimes it sounds like he's encouraging the kid, and sometimes he's even louder, which is why I know he's not trying to quiet him down but keep things going.

So tonight they're going at it as usual, and it's well after the time normal parents would have put a kid that age to bed for the night, but not these parents. I was sitting here at the computer, not doing anything particularly special, but I just decided I'd had enough of the nightly show.

I've got a leftover piece of 2x4 that's maybe 2 1/2 feet long. I decided I'd put it on the kitchen floor and get the hammer and pound on it for a bit, just so they'd know there's someone up here - something they've ignored all along.

My method of placing it on the floor was to hold it at mid-point, with one of the wider sides parallel to the floor, about 2 - 3 feet up. Then I let go. It made a nice sharp sound as it hit flat on the floor (didn't want to cause any dents in the flooring, which is why I got it out in the first place to pound on).

Next I went over to my tool box and picked up the hammer and went back to the kitchen, prepared to do some noisemaking of my own - lightly at first, harder if needed.

But suddenly it was awfully quiet down there. It's over half an hour later, well after 10 o'clock, and it's still quiet. I never needed the hammer.

That was easy.

For tonight, anyway. I doubt it's over.

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