January 17, 2007

The Astoria Notes

[Update: Be sure to read the surreal follow-up in which a high-school class in Florida gets involved.]

The Astoria NotesMy first year in New York, I lived on the top floor of an old building in Astoria, Queens, with rotted wood floors that creaked every time I took a step. I didn’t mind so much, because my schedule was so hectic I was rarely home. I got up early every day to get to my job by 9:00 a.m. I was happy to work in a photo studio, but it didn’t pay enough to survive in this town. So at 5:30 p.m. each day I left the studio and went to a bookstore across town, where I worked until 12:15 a.m. in order to make ends meet (and another 8 hours on Sundays). By the time I got back to Queens every night, hopefully before 1:30 a.m., I was beat. I’d take an hour to wind down before finally going to bed, getting a few hours sleep, and starting over.

One night, I came home to find the first in a series of notes slipped under my door. Small writing filled both sides of a sheet of loose leaf paper. I didn’t know what to make of it. The note began, “Dear Neighbor. When you arrive late every night, you are probably concentrating on your chores and don’t realize that this building, this street, the traffic, the people are all very still, very quiet.” The care and craftsmanship that went into writing this note was beyond anything I’d ever heard of from an angry neighbor. I continued reading.

Click the images below to see them larger for easier reading:

The Astoria Notes

The Astoria Notes

Wow. I had no idea I was keeping them up. But what could I do? I had to come home at that hour, and it wasn’t my fault the floor was squeaky. More importantly, who bothers to write such a long and detailed letter just to say “Keep it down up there?” It seemed like every word was carefully chosen, written, re-read, and reconsidered. I tested the floor in different areas, trying to find the creakiest spots so I could avoid them when I walk, and made an effort to be quieter when I came home from work.

Months passed. Then one night, I found a greeting card slipped under my door. A greeting card. They took the time to shop for the appropriate card to say exactly what they wanted to say.

The Astoria Notes

I opened it. Inside it read:

The Astoria Notes

Wow, that’s touching. They picked out the card, and even went through the trouble of using White Out to make it more relevant to the situation. Who does that? Who were these people? How did they know my name? After all this time, I’d still neither met them nor seen them. Well, I was sorry to hear that I was still keeping them awake, but I was honestly doing everything I could possibly do within reason to minimize my noise.

Several more months passed with no notes about the noise. I guess all my extra efforts to be quiet were paying off. Then this arrived, slipped under my door:

The Astoria Notes

A leak? That’s much more serious than just some noise. I called the number on the note and left a message, explaining that I’d been having no plumbing problems, and no water was pooling in my bathroom or kitchen, so the water must be coming from somewhere else. I don’t recall exactly what I said, but I must have put forth some specific theory about water condensation and the shower, because later this note was slipped under my door:

The Astoria Notes

Woah. Not only was I still too noisy for them, but they were taking advantage of my noise to entice an unwanted guest to leave. And that was so sweet of them to comment on my health. I guess they could hear that I was hacking up a lung when I had that cold. Well, at least the leaks had stopped. Or so I thought. A few weeks later, there was another note:

The Astoria Notes

The Astoria Notes

A waterfall? Coming from my apartment? Please! I’d had enough of this. No more notes. No more phone calls. It was time to march downstairs, knock on Apartment 5, and have a real conversation with these people face to face. I went downstairs and knocked. The door opened about 2 inches, and an eyeball stared at me. We had a brief conversation that way, through the crack in the door. I confess that I couldn’t pay attention to the conversation very much because I suddenly found myself wondering what it was that this woman didn’t want me to see. I remember she said something about her privacy and her beliefs being nobody’s business, and she didn’t want me to see what her apartment looked like. Okay. I told her I had no idea what the cause of these leaks were, and suggested she bring it up with the building manager to see if they can figure it out. I went back upstairs to my apartment.

It wasn’t long before I received another note:

The Astoria Notes

That was the last note I ever received from Apartment 5. A few weeks later, I moved.

Update: This story now has a very interesting and surreal follow-up, which you can read here.


All I have to say is “Wow.”

I would almost think Sophina in Apt 5 might have been an interesting person to meet if she wasn’t so annoying. I have to say, from apartment-living-experience, noise is to be expected. That’s all part of the experience, especially in older buildings. Our walls use to shake (along with our trinket shelves) every time the behemoths from upstairs came down, which was frequently. It often sounded like a small herd of cows outside out front door. You get used to it. And as for your Apt 5, I would have said, “Don’t like noise while you’re sleeping? Use earplugs.”

Hilarious post - it brought back many fond (and many not-so-fond) memories of apartment life.

A friend of mine used to describe his upstairs neighbor as “the kickboxing horse.”

Really enjoyed your story but as I work in job that entails much data entry (punching keys that is) and tend to read my blog posts while waiting for data to return or save I would prefer if you could keep your posts a bit shorter so that It would be easier for me to complete in a more compact period. Not all of us have the luxury of limitless free time to read things at great length. This would be much appreciated.
Thank You
A subscriber.


This was a great read thanks for sharing sorry you had to go through something like that. I was freaked out by the time I got to the greeting card.

Thanks for renewing my appreciation for home ownership. When my husband and I were first married, we lived in a condo with such thin walls and floors that the snoring of the guy above us actually kept me awake unless I kept the bathroom fan on all night. My husband also got to enjoy the experience of listening to our upstairs neighbor greeting a prostitute at the door one night.

Man, the passive-agressiveness is scary. What a nutcase…

I had a very similar experience living in Manhattan a few years ago. My downstairs neighbor was one of those “cat ladies” who’d lived in our (fairly modern, 60s era) building for years. She had string hair, a lazy eye and wore cat’s eye glasses. She left many notes, complained to the super, and actually came to my door and nearly burst into tears begging me to be quiet. She said I was moving furniture and tap dancing (she put that in writing) at 4am. It’s true, I was into the night life and often came home late. But there was no furniture moving or dancing of any kind! LOL Even after instituting a policy of removing my shoes at the door and treading lightly at all times, her complaints continued. Finally, the CoOp board dug up a little-enforced regulation & made me to put down carpeting at my own expense. After shelling out well over $1,000 on carpet, I let the neighbor know that any further complaints would be met with a harrassment lawsuit. That was the end of that. It’s sad that NYC drives people to be such neurotic messes. If she was THAT sensitive to noise, how could she live in an apartment right above Third Avenue all those years?

Outstanding. I’m sure that was most frustrating for you, but it’s entertaining for all of us.

I once lived in a 1st-story apartment in Atlanta where the elderly woman above me had obsessive-compulsive disorder. Not that I ever spoke with her even once, but my diagnosis is based upon the fact that at 6 a.m. every day she needed to 1) vacuum her entire apartment and then 2) run her car for about 20 minutes while poking around underneath the hood with a flashlight. EVERY DAY. Best part is, the parking spot she made sure to ALWAYS park in was about 5 feet from my bedroom window.

For the entire time I lived there, I went back and forth between feeling sorry for this woman and hoping her sons were trying to get her help, vs. wishing she would spontaneously combust.

This is great, I have a neighbor like this below me. He complains, basically, about me “walking around” when I’m not lucky enough to avoid conversation with him.

Also he seems to have imaginary complaints similar to the people living below the “tap dancing” commenter. No, I’m not moving furniture around, maybe you are mentally insane.

Maybe I’d take his complaints seriously if there weren’t other incidents where he is making frivolous complaints/requests or otherwise being passive aggressive.

I almost WANT to irritate him when he cops this kind of attitude.

After living in a college dorm for the last 2.5 years my current in apartment in astoria feels more quiet then a coffin, even when the neighbors kids play with the stero and blast Salsa music at 1AM, then quickly mute it, then blast it, then mute it, then blast it…..

One summer, my upstairs neighbor invited a friend of his to stay for a week. Every night, judging by the noises and smells coming from his apartment, the two gentlemen would fill a child’s wading pool in the bedroom above mine, put their tap shoes on and do a buck-and-wing routine through some nearby sand poured on his floor. Then it was time for them to relax and slosh around in the pool, enjoy a fat cigar, and set off the smoke alarm.

Based on anecdotal evidence, I’m convinced that there is at least one of these letter-writing crazies in every building in Manhattan.

I had an upstairs neighbor (in Southern MS) who we could only figure had placed every single object in his apartment as far away from where he would need to use it as was possible. Perhaps he was trying to lose weight, for he must have walked several miles a day above us. I actually decided he must have some OCD or anxiety issues, and we left him alone. Now, the lady next door who had several episodes a week of escalating “Oh Baby, oh baby, oh, baby!”s? We never saw a person other than herself come in or out of that apartment, and we ended up blasting her with the most hideous music we had.

I miss that apartment.

Based on anecdotal evidence, I’m convinced that there is at least one of these letter-writing crazies in every building in Manhattan.

Or, perhaps, Sophina moves often.

Nice story. I had an old man below me who would accuse me of jumping up and down at all hours *and* shooting up heroin.
We now have an older woman below us who complains about stuff that is 2 weeks old “Two weeks ago you came home at…” and we have to scratch our heads to remember the night.

Ironically, the youngish guy above us wears cowboy tap shoes when he comes home @ 5am. His cat, which must weigh 40 pounds then runs around for an hour.
Then he farts (which we can hear).
Viva apartments.

Wow. Just wow.

I hate apartment living, although I will gladly take my current stomping neighbors over blast loud music neighbors.

One day. One day I’ll have a home.

Awesome! I am going to start writing crazy notes and cards to my noisy upstairs Astoria neighbors!

Hilarious stuff. Two personal anecdotes. My wife and I lived in a loft that had wood floors/ceilings. Noise traveled so easily, I could hear my upstairs neighbor’s cell phone when it was on vibrate. They had two big dogs whose claws would scratch the floor as they ran about. When the owner went out to party every night until 4 am (and then come home drunk to keep partying), the dogs would bark at every passerby on the street below. We went absolutely apoplectic. I bought an airhorn and would blast it at the neighbor constantly. Then his dog peed on the floor, which came through the wood and dripped into my closet. I confronted him, and he said, “Stuff happens, man.” So we moved out of there and subletted the space to a Japanese Punk rock band to use as an all-hours rehearsal space.

Prior to that, we lived in a railroad apartment across the hall from a reclusive artist. He used to write us notes. (Wish I’d kept them!) He was a tightly wound guy, to say the least. Generally, I wouldn’t respond to the notes. Then I got a note saying my wife and I were too quiet, that the silence was deafening. It boggles the mind.

Nick said: “I could hear my upstairs neighbor’s cell phone when it was on vibrate… I bought an airhorn and would blast it at the neighbor constantly… Then his dog peed on the floor, which came through the wood and dripped into my closet.”

Tell me you’re kidding—

I used to manage several nyc-area apartment buildings, and I can tell you there is no shortage of craziness amongst tenants.

Whether they’re calling to tell me the woman upstairs exercises at 2am on her home gym (which I actually had to search for, but did not exist), or that their neighbor’s son purposefully finds the squeakiest spots on the floor, and rocks back and forth on it, laughing, I had the same answer:

If you want peace and quiet, live in a cabin in the woods. Do not live in a box surrounded by other people. You will never be happy with such unrealistic expectations.

I think this is one of the best blog posts I’ve ever read. I haven’t even made it through all their letters yet.

This is wonderful. If you haven’t, I’d recommend reading the short chapter called “The Microscopic Gentleman from Japan” in Thomas Wolfe’s _You Can’t Go Home Again_.

It tells the same story, from the same point of view, possibly in the same building. But in a very different way.

Thank you for sharing this wonderful character study.

Now how can I use it…

I have always enjoyd the appartement bulletin board in the lobbies of the appartement building I´ve lived. Here (just like on The Internets) tennants post annonymous complaints with allot of exclamation marks and red ink. The rebuttals from the inteded reciever and trolls who take sides either one way or another are often amusing.

Any graphologists out there who can shed some light on Sophias schizo handwriting? The first letter is so very different from the following notes.

Holy crap, some people are certifiable :) But at the same time the notes do provide entertainment value (apparently even for you) so that’s not all bad. We have a lady upstairs whose dog plays with a small hard ball, and likes nothing more than dropping it on the floor repeatedly and letting it bounce to a stop, the repeating the game. She also seems to enjoy moving her furniture around in the early hours of the morning, so the complaints of “tap-dancing” and “moving furniture” are by no means unique. We’ve also had our paintwork in our bathroom ruined by leaks coming in from her apartment. However, we take the bad with the good and the building is generally quiet. Thankfully the walls are quite thick, but apartments above will always cause problems.

Simple answer, use foam earplugs. Cheap, you can buy them at any pharmacy. You get 3x more dreams/REM, and you wake up much much more rested regardless of hours of sleep, side effect is often you wont wake up from any alarm, even a TV blaring at full volume. Foam earplugs let me sleep all morning while every neighbor on my block has landscapers using Airplane Jet Engine Leaf Blowers at 7AM in the morning.

I used to live in Montreal and in my building, all at the same time, I had:

- a next door neighbour with a penchant for REALLY LOUD opera at all hours.
- a mostly deaf downstairs neighbour who was convinced I was running laps in my apartment and knocked on my door every day to shout at me about it (and, presumably, try to catch me in full jogging mode). Turned out it was the cats chasing each other in my carpeted hallway that was making her little dog freak out.
- a neighbour in the building next door, separated by a foot-thick brick firewall no less, who would bang on my door at 6am every week or so and INSIST I keep it down. When I explained I was asleep and that he was waking me up, he’d look at me with squinty/crazy eyes, look over my shoulder to see if there was anything that might be making the noise he was imagining, make a weird little barking noise and then stomp off.

Like you, I moved. To another country. Bought a semi-detached house and haven’t looked back.

OK. I am not proud to admit this but I will:
I, at one point in my life, was an insane letter writing neighbor. I had someone down the hall from me whose bass from their stereo would drive me crazy and I would leave them insane notes.

At the high point of my letter writing, I was deeply depressed and felt overwhelmed by my life in NYC. The breaking point was when I realized I could not even control the noise IN my apartment. It made me snap. Long story short, I realized NYC was not for me and moved to another country where it is so quiet you can hear a pin drop at night. In this country, it is really frowned upon in society to be loud and a bad neighbor so it works for me. In America, NYC especially, people kinda just shrug and say “Yeah, but what’re you gonna do.” I couldn’t change NYC so I had to change my location.

Moving worked for me and I suspect these other people are not financially able to move somewhere that is more suited to their lifestyle.

The poster who said: “If you want peace and quiet, live in a cabin in the woods. Do not live in a box surrounded by other people. You will never be happy with such unrealistic expectations.” was right on.

I loved NYC but I just couldn’t take the noise. You either have to suck it up or move. That’s it.

i just have to say that i love you and i love your blog.
this is one of your best posts.

Sounds like a typical Astoria shut in to me. People live in a house instead of an apartment and seem to think that means they’ve moved out to the country-side where they may demand absolute peace and quiet—yet enjoy only a 30 minute commute to Midtown Manhattan.

It just doesn’t work that way. If you’re going to live anywhere in NYC, and in a house, expect to know exactly when your neighbor is sleeping, when awake, and when they’re being naughty—without complaining about it.

I lived in France in an apartment above a lesbian couple with an infant son who basically had it in for my roommate and I because we weren’t French (I’m American and she was Austrian). The son was the reason why they couldn’t wear earplugs. They complained that we walked too loudly, we informed them that we didn’t wear shoes in the apartment. A couple of times they banged on our ceiling to complain about the noise when we were firmly ensconced in our beds. Dinner guests had to be shuffled out of the home by 10:00pm - they found our dining chairs to be too loud. Conversations after 10pm were whispered. They called the cops on us, repeatedly. They were evil.

I’m sure whoever is living above them now are getting the exact same notes that you got. These people need to live on the top floor of a building.

I’m currently living in NYC, and. though I’ve lived in apartments before, my current apartment has THE WORST neighbors I’ve ever had. I am convinced they were all raised by wild animals. The neighbors next door (a family) are probably the worst, with their incessant reggaeton playing. I once woke up to two teen girls screaming at each other in the freakin’ hallway at 3:30 am and the argument lasting for about 2 hours. Then there are the neighbors upstairs, which in comparison to the ones next door, are much quieter. Some nights, I’ll hear the guy upstairs screaming at someone, telling them to leave and assorted cursewords, and possibly moving furniture around, dropping things on the floor and other common complaints. I however, don’t have the luxury of leaving notes since I don’t live in a particularly safe neighborhood.

When I read your post, it brought me back to some old memories and reinforced my decision to stay where I am. I live on a noisy avenue (a truck route) but all of the noise is OUTSIDE.

Noisy neighbors are the reason I would NEVER buy an apartment.

After bad room mates (they were the note leavers), thin walls (I could smell the cologne of the guy next door and his favorite phrase was, “what are you crazy?”) and a Swedish (10 bond guys - I swear - in a studio apt) gymnastic team into hip hop music above me…I know how lucky I am now.

the worst part of the loud music neighbors? their terrible taste in music. i had one neighbor who would listen to what sounded like rabbits being slaughtered all night long.

my personal favorite bad neighbors were the ones with a small child who would wander into other appartments when her parents were too spun to take care of her. do you have any idea how creepy it is to wake up at 5 am and standing in a dark corner of your room, watching you sleep, is a five year old girl in the rattiest night gown you’ve ever seen? i almost wet the bed.

Pella, people who blast their music ALWAYS have the worst taste. It’s like a law of physics or something.

I’ve had a similar problem with a neighbor with the noise from my showering habits. It’s rather amusing that it was taken care of the same exact way— Via note passing under doors.

Never fun to have to mess around with how you do things to appease others, that’s for sure. Especially when you have a busy schedule such as you seemed to have, and I do as well. Hope the new apartment worked better, and I hope I don’t have to hear from my neighbors again about my showering habits.

I’ve had some real winners for upstairs neighbors.

My first one would drop what sounded like a pool ball on the floor about 10x a night and scare the heck out of me. I eventually talked to the manager. It turned out that he did somehow manage to get a full-size pool table in to his 1 bedroom apartment. It also seems that after several years of this, he still knocks pool balls off of the table.

Another neighbor removed her carpeting and installed a tile floor. You could hear every single step that was made up there. It frequently sounded like someone was hammering on the floor.

I’ll take both of them over the people with loud music. At least floor noise is intermittant, but loud music goes on for hours. We had one of those guys who never blasted the stereo until after 10:30pm. He actually made my chair vibrate and he lived two floors below. When he began at 1am, I knocked on his door and he yelled “Go the &%$# to bed!” through the door. I used to kill the circuit breakers to his apartment on a regular basis.


The guy below me tried the same thing -“you were walking around two weeks ago after midnight”.

Two weeks ago? Really? That’s why you tracked me down?

And I didn’t have shoes on, wasn’t stomping around, I was probably cooking something in the kitchen.

If an apartment has thin floors it’s not always the fault of the person above you if the noise is bothering you.

In our previous apartment (also in Queens!), my wife and I lived on the top floor above a 30ish woman and her obese, unhealthy 50-year-old roommate. The 30-year-old owned the place and rented out a room to the 50-year-old. The really sad part was that our apartment was a one-bedroom with a large eat-in kitchen, and the apartment downstairs had the same layout, only with a wall dividing the kitchen in half. So basically, this poor middle-aged woman lived in the equivalent of our breakfast nook.

Our landlord had warned us about them even before we moved in. Sure enough, the very first day we were there, I was building some furniture and the 30-year-old came up to introduce herself and ask nicely if I would keep it down. Her demeanor was nice enough, but I had a problem: What was I supposed to do? Not build the furniture?

A few days later, she came up again. And then again. And again. And again. I later found out she was pretty much just doing her tenant’s bidding. And a couple of times the tenant came up herself, once while recovering from surgery, always a little manic and seemingly on the edge of a breakdown. We really, really wanted to be quieter, if only to stop this from happening. But I honestly didn’t see what we could do. We were walking around in socks most of the time. One time the tenant called us after we sat down to a late dinner at our kitchen table. That was it — just the chair being pulled out once, and kapow, phone call.

The last time we heard from her was when my wife’s parents were staying over from out of town, getting ready to go to my parents’ house for dinner. While I was out getting a borrowed car, the 50-year-old stormed upstairs and yelled at everybody. And, from my understanding, I do mean yelled. She apparently exploded, and everybody was quite shaken when I got back. “We’re just getting ready to leave,” my mother-in-law protested. “In shoes?!” the tenant thundered.

I heard through the grapevine that she felt really bad about this incident, and my wife conscientiously avoided her after that. We didn’t hear from her again, and eventually, the 30-year-old couldn’t deal with her anymore and kicked her out.

Soon after that, we moved to another apartment in the same building — this one not on the top floor. And before we’d been in the new place for a week, we noticed we’d hear this pound, pound, pounding on our ceiling almost every single night. I knew there was at least one small child up there, and I presumed she was the culprit — it honest-to-God sounded like she was hitting the floor repeatedly with a hammer. And it lasted forever! But not wanting to be hypocritical considering our problems in the previous apartment, we didn’t complain.

This lasted for months. One night, my wife was watching a DVD and couldn’t hear it. She decided she just couldn’t handle it anymore and headed up there to ask them nicely if they could put a muzzle on their kid. “Oh, I’m sorry!” the woman who answered said. “My sister is dancing!”

It quieted down that night. But only that night. She’s still dancing.

I think Sophina was a closet dominatrix.

“David, would you pace your steps pausing at least seven seconds between footfalls…”

When she left her cell phone and said she was up until 11 pm, you missed out on her invitation to ride you like a pony.

Her perfect little pony.

With all due respect to your dear readers, it’s really
interesting to note that the Spohies are outnumbering
the Davids here in the comments ….

Story reminded me of another one…..


Amazing. Thanks for posting this. By the way, where in Astoria was this? The Acropolis?

What a great post. Totally made my day. I gotta find that greeting card.

Totally a lurker, but this post made me obsessive! The filters at work would not allow me to see the long story version so I literally left work early and sped (is that a word?) home to devour it. Better than sex; thank you for this gem!

As one who posesses relatively little experience renting, I would like to thank everyone here for the gift of perspective.

You have allowed me to at last not only see my issues with neighbor noise as thoroughly and utterly inconsequential, but to appreciate that only innocent bass notes, and not intelligible speech, nor worrisome clanks, ever trespass the divisions between units here.

Thank you.

My one stay in Hollywood was at the cheapest motel I could find. I was there three nights and each night at around 1am the “guy” above me would start running around his room, jumping off the bed, and pacing every inch of floor. This would go on each night for 3 or 4 hours non-stop. I’d lie there wide awake trying to figure our what *exactly* was happing, but it was so ramdom I just couldn’t tell. It was really fuckin’ spooky… but then so was most of LA. Its was like a city ready to die.

That was a great read! I’ve been living in apartments with hard wood floors for nearly 20 years and I’m a very light sleeper but my biggest problem is not noise from above but noise from below. Ceiling fans! Many people use those things - the worst ones are those in the bedrooms. Think about it - the ceiling fan motor on their ceiling is just inches below your bed - and it’s a continuous mechanical sound. In my last place, I could feel the vibration from the fan on my wooden bed frame - all the time. I complained but management said it was part of the apartment. They replaced it with a quieter fan but it didn’t help. I had to move the bed to the living room and then later moved out - so now I make sure there’s no one below me and I never turn on my ceiling fan in respect for the people above.

Great post! This reminds me why I’m so happy to be a homeowner.

(If I were still in an apartment, I’d probably be the source of many complaints, as I’m a jazz saxophonist who has to practice. In my one non-college apartment, I taught a few lessons here and there and had one or two early-evening jam sessions. The only comment I ever heard from a neighbor was that “the flamenco music [?] was cool.”)

This is hilarious :-)

What a great story! It wouldn’t be nearly as interesting if you didn’t have scans of the actual letters. Very funny, but the ending leaves me hanging! You need to go back and visit Apt 5 and demand to know this woman’s story!

A little noise or accusation of causing it is much better than living in a single home in the suburbs. We live in the City b/c it ain’t the country and crazy neighbors are part of the reason. For me, at least.

When I was living in California, I had a downstairs neighbor who complained to the landlord about noise from my TV, during the day, on weekends.

I invited the landlord over to show him that I didn’t have a TV. It turns out that the nutjob downstairs had complained about (and driven out) two tenants before me. She was gone two months later. This is the only time that ridiculously landlord-biased laws worked for me.

Wow that was really an interesting story.

Back in the day, we had a DJ living in the apt. below us. We could hear him practicing all the time. When my husband and I went down to let him know it was noisy he acted clueless…as he stood there with his mixing equipment running behind him.
A few years later we were lucky enough to live next door to the loudest woman in the world. We nicnamed her Mona. (Frankly, I think she was faking.) Later, after she broke up with her boyfriend, but before she started to enjoy single life we changed her name to Mona Sobsalotti. She cried so loudly I started to feel sorry for her…when I wasn’t wishing that she’d pipe down. She’d also sit out on the walkway (we live in the pacific northwest and the hallways were open-air) and talk on her cell. That’s how the entire building learned that she lost her job for incompetence and was being evicted for not paying the rent. True story.
We’ve been living in our own home for a few years now. I can’t say that I miss the noisy neighbors you find in apartment buildings.

I had an downstairs neighbor that was simply OBSESSED with the idea that I stomped around. I took to only walking around in socks…and still she persisted in slipping her computer typed notes under my door. Don’t these people have anything better to do? I’m now sorry I didn’t save the notes, they would’ve been good for a laugh.
On the other hand, I once lived across the street from an art school….my upstairs neighbors were two ballet dancers…their running leaps would shake my walls..

Ha, ha. Love the story! The person who lives upstairs from the apartment next to mine was busted recently for running on her treadmill at 5:30 am on a Saturday. I’m glad you at least cared what your neighbors thought!

Christ Almighty! as Butters would say. :)

You should see the movie “The Tenant” by Roman Polanski. I was living next to the neighbors-from-hell when a friend heard my tales of woe and asked me if I’d ever seen that movie. I said no, but it sounds great so I’ll go rent it. He immediately said “NO, for GODS SAKE don’t watch it NOW! Wait until a year or so AFTER you move out of here. If you watch it now, it will drive you to suicide!”

I waited. When I finally watched it, I decided he was absolutely right.

I love the screwy syntax and the old-lady handwriting. I looked at an apartment in Fort Greene once a few years ago, nice price and nice location, but when I asked what was going to happen with the filthy shag carpets strewn over the nice parquet floor the broker said “oh don’t worry, we’ll put down new rugs over those for extra sound insulation. The 70-year-old landlady lives immediately downstairs and doesn’t want people wearing shoes in the house.” Needless to say I didn’t rent the place.

LECCO, Italy (Reuters) - An Italian couple have confessed to killing four neighbors including a toddler after a long feud over noise, a prosecutor said Thursday, resolving a gruesome murder case that has held the country in thrall.

Thirty-year-old Raffaella Castagna, her two-year-old son, her mother and a neighbor were found with their throats slit on December 11 in Castagna’s apartment in the wealthy northern town of Erba. Their home had been set on fire.

The press immediately fingered Castagna’s husband, a Tunisian immigrant recently freed from jail under a mass pardon, only to offer rare front-page apologies when it emerged that at the time of the murders he was on a trip to his homeland.

The vicious nature of the murders fueled talk of a vendetta linked to the Tunisian’s previous conviction for drug dealing.

But earlier this week police arrested Olindo Romano and Rosa Bazzi, an apparently respectable middle-aged couple with no criminal record living in the same building. They confessed in a 10-hour interrogation and Bazzi said she killed the two-year-old, investigators said.

The neighbors had a long-running feud with the Castagnas whom they accused of being noisy, but surviving members of the Castagna family never imagined they would go so far.

Investigators said they believed the murders were premeditated.

“This is a case that has shaken the consciences of everybody, including us the magistrates,” prosecutor Alessandro Maria Lodolini told a news conference. “It became a matter of honor for us to resolve it as quickly as possible and reassure public opinion,” he said.

Police were eventually led to the culprits by a 60-year-old neighbor who was attacked and left for dead when he tried to help the victims. They also found blood in Romano’s car.

Sounds like they got what they deserved, Anonymous.

There’s a Steven Jesse Bernstein poem/song that’s just perfect for this.
‘The Man Upstairs’ from ‘Prison’.
He goes on and on about knowing everything the guy upstairs is up to, and feels sorry for him because he’s on the top floor and has no one above him (or something like that, it’s been a while).
So anyhoo, the point being maybe these people NEED to have someone above them, dig?

This is, without a doubt, one of the most fascinating entries I’ve ever read on the Web. It has everything—strange, fascinating foreign neighbors, sickness, loud noises, and workaholicism.


I once lived downstairs from an older lady who had moved to the US from Poland and had frequent late night calls with her homeland. Of course she had to shout very loudly because Poland is a long way away I actually called the cops on her.

I’m reminded of an Ogden Nash poem.

The People Upstairs

The people upstairs all practise ballet
Their living room is a bowling alley
Their bedroom is full of conducted tours.
Their radio is louder than yours,
They celebrate week-ends all the week.
When they take a shower, your ceilings leak.
They try to get their parties to mix
By supplying their guests with Pogo sticks,
And when their fun at last abates,
They go to the bathroom on roller skates.
I might love the people upstairs more
If only they lived on another floor.

Ogden Nash

This is why I LOVE having my own house. A very interesting post (found via MetaFilter).

This reminds me of one of my friends’ upstairs neighbour.

Back in the 90s, when I was living in Montreal, going to McGill U, a friend of mine had this adorable basement apartment in an old Victorian building, in the trendy and expensive student ghetto. Rents being what they were, she had very little furniture.

Her upstairs neighbour, a professor type, enjoyed waking up at 5am on Sundays and slamming doors. My friend let it slide and never complained.

Then, one Saturday evening, she had a dinner party with some classical musicians (and some mere mortals, like myself). After dinner, the musicians picked up some instruments (a classical guitar, a couple of violins) and played music. They played some lovely, soft bossanovas. It was very nice.

Well, the upstairs neighbour was *not* appreciative! He came down and barked that the noise was too much; he had to sleep because he had to get up early!

My friend told him to calm down, that it was only 10pm and it wasn’t that loud anyways. He disagreed: if she had more furniture, then the noise would be OK, but as it stood, the noise echoed and drove him nuts.

So she asked him what he wanted her to do. He said, “get more furniture or I’ll have you evicted.” We all laughed and he clammered off.

Anyways, at around 11pm the musicians took off and the remaining guests chilled with some nice herbal tea (it was the 90s, after all). That was when the cops showed up.

The cops said they had had a noise complaint. They looked around, saw that we were all having tea and that my friend didn’t own any speakers (again, poor) and laughed their heads off. They asked if the guy upstairs was nuts and my friend told them about his clomping around at 5am and how he told her to get more furniture. So the cops said they’d have a word with him.

He never bothered her again.

Thank you for this post. During my sentence as an apartment-dweller, my role was as the irritated lower neighbor. However, I was justified, considering that the guy upstairs was a fan of *gulp* techno music and had a band consisting of four poorly trained electric guitarists who, apparently, were ignorant to the concept of pitch.

I live in a 4 plex (top floor) in Tennessee, and I’ve had some doozies for downstairs neighbors. The worst was the clean cut American nuclear family (wife, husband, 2 kids). Look up “disfunctional” in the dictionary—there probably is a family picture of them. Wife would SCREAM at her kids, husband (loved calling the guy “a fucking asshole”—the phrase “I hate you” came up a lot in their conversations). I would be sitting in the living room trying to read the newspaper after a day’s work, and the screaming would well up out of the floor like ooze flowing out of a crypt. Needless to say, we kept our distance as much as possible—husband seemed nice enough (I felt sorry for him) but the wife was certified wack-o.

The wife was a beautician and worked out of the apartment. I always knew when she cut someone’s hair, because she would throw huge clumps of the clippings out onto the lawn in back of the apartments. To top it off, the husband was a chain smoker—his big hobby was sitting on the back porch flinging cig butts onto the lawn.

This meant whenever we took the garbage down to the dumpster, we had the most delightful experience of walking through mounds of human hair and cig butts.

Husband lost his job and the family bugged out in the middle of the night.

Then there was the neighbor who claimed we were too loud—she would bang on the ceiling when we were asleep. She drove the landlord crazy with her constant complaints (we were “too loud” and the neighbor across the hall from her “smoked and stunk up the place”).

Right now, we’ve got great neighbors, thank the good lord—r3

Astoria here, Let me tell you! I had the cream of the crop above me. I had a Kickboxer instructor who beat his wife (cops called all the time). There was a slutty barmaid who brought her work home because she loved her job so much. There was the Dj who mixed music @ all hours & then there was the opera singer who drove me insane. The tenants now are so quiet, that I can breath now & sleep well.


You know you’re on a winner when the comments span x10 the original article, thanks for sharing. AJ

David, I was reading Sophina’s first letter and I was reminded of an old ICQ contact of mine: same USAGE of capital letters in the important phrases, scattered around extraneous information. I truly believe that she would act/react in the same way! As I kept reading, I was amused to discover that, like my friend, English was not her first language, and with a name like Sophina she may indeed be eastern European as well. Thanks for the diversion!

Manhattan - Lower East Side - very very cramped 2 bedroom apt - aspiring opera singer next door - ears her money as a waitress - practices at night - ‘nuff said. :-)

I once received a similar letter:
“Can you please tone down the love-making”

My ex wouldn’t let me keep it as she knew I would use it in my CV.

I wonder why people who love playing loud music never seem to have heard of headphones.

Oh my God! What a set of nutbags!

One apartment I lived in was actually an upstairs “mother in law” quarters. The only access was through the backyard of the house up a very rickety staircase. The light at the top of the stairs was my only light source. One morning, I arrived home after being out all night to find the backyard neighbor lying in wait for me. She told me that I needed to keep that light off because it shines directly into her daughter’s bedroom window and she can’t sleep.

I think I just stared at her for a while before going inside. What the hell was I supposed to do about that? Buy her daughter curtains? I tried to make sure to leave the light off if I wasn’t coming home, but I would still become angry about it. What if it were an actual street lamp outside? Who would she complain to then?

Needless to say my light would be unscrewed on more than one occasion after that. How are you supposed to go about your daily life when someone does that to you? You all have to live here, this is your home. Nothing makes me more uncomfortable than a stupid confrontation like that, and you feel all out of proportion stressed out about it then you have to move.


I remember a nice looking young woman who lived above me. She was single, but after a few months found a boyfriend. I remember hearing the first time they made love on her squeaky mattress. All that went through my mind was, “There is no way he can keep that pace!” He couldn’t. After about 40 seconds he slowed way down.

I currently have a neighbor above my condo who used to leave notes. The day I moved in she left a note about my dogs barking. I explained they were a little freaked since I was coming and going to move stuff and the condo next door was having an open house, and that they were normally very quiet. Soon I was getting notes for slamming doors and all kinds of crap. One morning she came down and complained that my dog barked. He did, once, when her paper boy threw her Sunday paper against my front door. In a fit she also said that I was too noisy in my “other activities” the night before, meaning sex. I really wanted to own the incredible noisy sex, but it just wasn’t true and the girl involved was standing behind me. I finally told her to %^$& herself and never talk or leave a not for me again. She knocked on my door the next day and I told her I had no desire to ever talk to her again and shut the door. It has been a great year since then.

Anyway you cut it, these older buildings in the city are “charming” but almost always a nightmare. Nobody’s fault, really, as much as I hate being awakened by MY upstairs neighbors as well — for the low, low, price of 2,800 a month for a one-bedrroom (with charming large windows, ugh.).

Everybody’s right in this situation. It’s loud as hell when doors are closed with even a little bit of a heavy hand — what you hear in the hall gets amplified in hollow walls by about eight or ten fold. And the space between floors amplifies every sound closer to fifteen fold downstairs — same principle an accoustic guitar is built on: hollow space below noise source. Without the hollow space, you would BARELY hear the note a guitar string produces.

I just look at it like a line of “noise credit” — you wake me up in the middle of the night in hard-soled shoes and loud doors even when I’m wearing ear plugs? No, sweat — I get to listen to the first two Black Sabbath albums at stage volume with my 8AM Sunday coffee. Works for me.

Been upstairs and down.


anyone have stories about neighbours makin sounds from below?…apart from footsteps i would think noises carry up or down…seems like most stories here are about complaining neighbours from above, hm

This is hilarious. Seriously, how can she live in NYC if she’s this sensitive to noise? And this controlling!

For me, it’s the noises I don’t understand that keep me up at night. Footsteps, shoes upstairs, no problem. But every morning at 8 or 9ish, I hear a noise from the upstairs neighbors’ apartment like something being dragged very quickly across a ribbed surface. Like clothes being rubbed across an old-fashioned metal washboard.

I can’t figure out what the hell it is! They take 5 or 6 passes, and it’s done.

Really, it’s kept me up nights wondering what that noise is.

One night around 10pm in my little upper east side studio, the woman below me knock on my door and asked me if I was “lifting weights and dropping them on the floor”. Haha, just thinking about it now makes me laugh because it was such a ridiculous theory. What do people just sit in their apts thinking of all the possible shit that people could be doing above them? I later came to realize that it was my cat running around that caused the noise, and when I did eventually move later that year, she was a big contributing factor. It was so stressful trying to be quiet all the time, esp trying to keep my cat quiet!

i know everyone is quick to judge sophina. is she a freak? perhaps. but it doesn’t mean she wasn’t suffering. unfortunately for me, i live under two shrinks who are the “earth parents” of two kids, and it hasn’t been pleasant. “Our kids deserve to run! Just because you hate children…” Look, lady, i don’t hate kids. I don’t even hate YOUR kids. I hate YOU because you’re a bad parent. I grew up in the suburbs and we even had rules about running around the house. If you want running around the house, take it to a split level ranch in Levittown. Years of letters and conversations with the co-op board haven’t worked, so now I get back in other ways, like leaving a smear of honey on their doorknob every other week. It’s just enough to get them a fraction as irritated as I am. And if it’s all the justice I can get for now, then so be it.

I have to admit that I have left notes for my neighbor/roomate. But who wants to tell a grown woman to her face that she needs to stop leaving trails of urine from the toilet seat to the hallway. She also would walk around with, I kid you not, only her ass hanging out above her pants. She would be fully clothed except for her butt, and I am talking full moon, not just crack. I don’t know how I got myself into that situation but those problems are just the tip of the iceburg. I will fully admit that I feel more comfortable putting my concerns with her in writing, I worry I might throw up in my mouth if I have to talk to her face to face.

Dear blog neighbor.
I am currently working on the blog right next to yours and though I obviously don’t work on mine as much as you do on yours, I would appreciate you keeping your responses limited to only during daylight hours. Everytime I work on mine, it is late at night and I can’t concentrate due to all the typing and commenting going on next blog over. P.s. I couldn’t help but notice a few broken fonts on my blog this morning. They must be coming from your place. Please check into this. And, also dont visit my blog just send an email.
blog neighbor.

p.s. your blog is very amusing. I appreciate it. But really, keep it down.


The other comments prompt me to leave my story as well. I WAS the upstairs neighbor at one time in Pflugervile, Texas. The people down below me would beat on my floor (their ceiling)at all hours of the day and night so hard, that several times, I was ASLEEP and would wake up thinking a 747 had hit the apartment. It often scared me and startled me severely. One evening, after much banging, it heard a huge object hit my front door with a great thud. Upon opening my front door, I see a huge rock (about the size of a bowling ball) at my doorstep and my downstairs neighbor standing at the foot of the stairs wearing a thong underwear and holding a decorative sword. He was screaming that I was purposely making noise and jumping up and down on the floor. He told me I’d better quit stomping on the floor or he’d slice me into pieces. I slammed the door and called the police immeidately. The Pflugerville Sheriff’s department later told me they’d arrested ten people from inside the apartment and had discovered a meth lab. He said everyone in the place was a “wack job” and I was lucky they didn’t do anything worse to me. They all went to jail and were subsequently evicted from the apartment. The deputy told me the ring leader kept telling him that I was making noise, purposely jumping on the floor and bothering them constantly (in my sleep??). Moral of this story: Apartment builders need more soundproofing between floors and people running a meth lab should not throw boulders at their neighbor’s door! You think Sophina was running a meth lab?

Amazing story! I live in New York City as well and recently had a note slipped under my door. The odd part was that the person who sent it went through my trash and wrote the note on a food delivery recipt. It was complaining about the placement of a trash bad of mine in the garbage chute/bulk trash room on our floor. I imagined it was from the same person who taped up directions for that room, detailing how newspaper should be tied, etc… Anyway, I took the route of outting the nutter who left no apt # or name. I taped their note next to the garbage room directions with a note of mine own explaining to everyone that there’s a wacko on our floor who is going through all of your garbage!!!! Next day, dropped some stuff off and not note or directions in there and no notes since.

When I was out in Astoria, the neighbors above would almost certainly every night at 12:30 without fail, commence bowling. Or rearranging the furniture, but my roommate and I decided we preferred to think of it as bowling.


Just read the Astoria notes…It was so funny. I live in Flushing, own a co-op on the 2nd floor. The old tenants above me would be up at all hours of the night. Once I heard the son speaking Spanish to about 3am…when I told the Mom, she said he was probably talking to his girlfriend in Texas. They had no carpeting…finally the Landlord took them to court to comply with the 80% floor covering rules. I had to document the noise which occured on an 18 hour basis. They complied, but the other 20% was just as bad. Finally they sold their apt, and Chinese moved in…now I have nothing against other ethnic groups as downtown Flushing is a major ethnic area. Had to go to new owners as I heard them walking back and forth at 5am..wished them a Happy Chinese New Year…all the man said was “No English”…told him he needs to put down carpeting as the co-op requires it…again “No English. I even banged on bedroom ceiling at 1:30am…and someone stomped back really loud! There is a company called Soundproofing America, which had a write up in the New York Times. I am seriously thing of putting in soundproofing. Their website is www.soundproofingamerica.com
I use earplugs and you can still hear the noise. I have thought about moving, but I’m retired on social security. Co-op boards are very strict about income/finances. I found this thru the Queens Tribune

Lol… I am a downstairs neighbor… and I complain about the noise…

But then again, my upstairs neighbor has 7 grandchildren, who chase each other around her apartment endlessly stomping, until even my friends have started calling them “the elephants.” They stomp so hard the pictures fall off my walls… and when I go upstairs and ask her politely to either calm the children down or send them outside, her daughter, the kids’ mom, starts screaming “can’t my kids visit with their grandma?” And when the little monsters actually do go outside they beat on my front shutters with a stick, or stand right outside my bedroom window and scream at each other while playing wall-ball with a basketball…

I had to laugh! I remember moving into a small apartment in Charleston,SC. I was the bottom apartment and a couple shared the apartment above me. We could hear them all day AND all night. I remember saying (before we met the couple)there’s either a family of mexicans or a family of little elephants living up there. The maintenance man told me it was a middle age couple. I figured that they were at least 500 lbs each. Turns out that they were both rather petite. Still to this day I wonder what they could possibly be doing 24 hours a day.

This post was the best:
“Dear blog neighbor.
I am currently working on the blog right next to yours and though I obviously don’t work on mine as much as you do on yours, I would appreciate you keeping your responses limited to only during daylight hours. Everytime I work on mine, it is late at night and I can’t concentrate due to all the typing and commenting going on next blog over. P.s. I couldn’t help but notice a few broken fonts on my blog this morning. They must be coming from your place. Please check into this. And, also dont visit my blog just send an email.
blog neighbor.

p.s. your blog is very amusing. I appreciate it. But really, keep it down.”

Wow, that’s just… wow. Although I do have to say, for a nut job, she’s got really nice handwriting.

This was pretty amazing and a wee bit scary. Especially as she could have sorted it out so much more easily…

I used to live under a bunch of people who’d leave their TV on all night. About a month after I moved in, at 2.00 am, it was booming away particularly loudly so I decided enough was enough so I went up there and knocked on their door to if they could possibly turn it down.

The woman who answered was wearing a dressing gown and had clearly been asleep, in bed for some hours! I think, maybe, they had the TV on all the time, regardless of whether anyone was watching it and the noise had just kind of… dropped under their radar.

It was never left it on again!

Mwa ha ha haaargh!

Great blog by the way.



Fascinating story. So many mysteries left though! Why was Sophia so weird about her place? Why wouldn’t she talk face to face? Crazy stuff. I am very very glad that I have never had to live in an apartment. I know I am very sensitive to noise, so I have made living choices based on that. I bought a condo in a community with no upstairs or downstairs people, and everyone here is old. LOL It’s great! :-D

I feel for the neighbor downstairs as I am in the same situation with the inconsiderate ahole above me, stomping on the floors day and night, blasting the TV way past 11pm on a weekday. I spoke to him, the board and management, nothing got resolved, all you aholes on the top floors need to experience what hell you can put people below you through, after one week I don’t think you would just laugh it off!!


hey great story great responses I read everyones accounts and I think I have a wonderful idea for a book involving a new tenant and his misfortunes with his new neighbors

I had a really awful downstairs neighbor. He used to bang on the pipes with a broom when our newborn baby cried at night. When my husband was deployed to Iraq, everyone else in the building brought us brownies and asked if they could help babysit. HE asked if he could have my husband’s PARKING SPACE! I told him no! Because I was afriad that secretly he’d be hoping my husband was killed or injured, so that he could keep the parking space. some people are just creeps.

im an upstairs neighbor. you people downstairs dont know how guilty you make us feel about making the slightest noise. seriously, i begin to feel as though i cannot live my life anymore. it makes me angry, if you dont like apartment living live in a house, i make everyday noises and the girl below me, she slams things around all day. its like retaliation for me taking a shower or getting up early to go to school, or cooking, eating, enjoying life. and i cant even pee in peace, she goes in the bathroom and slams cabinets, then invites her boyfriend over to talk crap about me loud enough for me to hear it. Why say all that crap if u cant say it to my face. i mean i can hear her so i can come down there anytime i want and bash her in her mouth. im peaceful though. its as though downstairs people are not aware of their own noises either, upstairs people just let it go though. i’ve had to charge my ipod up, put my headphones on to drown out her retaliation noises and i keep my tv and fan on too and just try my best to live my life. i’d really love to punch her in her face and kidnap her cat, drop him off at the san francisco animal shelter. i wont though, i shall be moving in august.

when neighbors interfere in ur life, then i think whatever stupid complaints they have are nothing.

i’ve had worse neighbors though…i’ve had someone playing disney tunes random hours loudly on the cd player, she randomly played her piano, got drunk, ran into walls and cried about how she flunked her LSATS. and dont forget the sex she thought nobody could hear. she moved. then another, i’ll call her Cow and her friend Chicken….she was obese and had a loud mouth, complaining about me above her. it didnt stop until i started talking about how gross it is to be obese, and that being fat is not healthy, how ugly some people are, she was self conscious and subleased her place out. Next, its her ugly brother w/ a shiny forehead, his terrible taste in country and 80s music, and his banging of pots and pans and noise wars w/ me and slamming of the door….

i loved the blog though, it makes me laugh at living in an apartment and keeps me from going out of my mind w/ my situation here.

It’s somewhat reassuring to read that other people are experiencing similar frustrations as I. I searched for this topic in an effort to find a diplomatic solution to addressing the hearing-impaired lesbo and her girlfriend who live right below me. Blasting the television set is one thing (I guess she hasn’t heard of hearing aids or headsets?), but there have been numerous occasions of the two of them fighting (yelling at the top of their lungs), and then several hours later into the night, “making up.” I’m certainly no prude, and I have occasionally been cause for a degree of passion that disturbed neighbors in the past, but the deaf one’s moaning has surpassed being comical and has become quite aggravating. I tend not to like conflict, and entertained the idea of taping a hearing aid advertisement to their door, but realized that would primarily be indulging the demented side of my sense of humor and venting my frustration with little hope of solving the issue. In fact, I imagine it’s more likely to exacerbate it. If I could paint the picture, try yelling “Oh my God!” repeatedly while holding your nose. I’m not neurotic about it, at least I don’t think I am, but how can you not know your neighbors can hear you? Oh, and let me not forget to mention that one evening I couldn’t sleep because of the noise, so I picked up my acoustic guitar and began playing gently, only to be startled out of my chair by them banging on the ceiling directly below my feet!

A great solution would be to write back with the facts that, yes, you poured gallons upon gallons of water into a crack at the side of your bathtub with hope that the water would find a more grateful home that would put it to use by giving it the attention it was due. You threw shoes at the floor because the floorboards were dealing drugs out of your detached garage, and deserved to be shown who pays the bills. You stood for hours outside of your apartment waiting until you suspected your downstairs companions were moments into drifting slumber, since your lonely life’s desire was to be noticed during trivial activities such as opening and closing your door. Your tv is loud to drown out “the voices” and you walk on your heels because all of your toes have been broken during defending your country from invading tires which cross borders illegally. I would’ve like to see her response to those facts.

i hate my upstairs neighbhours. they have put their 3 dogs in a cage, a metyal one just on top of my head. they have a dog as big as a horse and the wife screams and swears at their 3 year old. Child abuse proper. i have written a note but they ignored me. rubbish hateful couple. i am stressed and have a headache

Pella, people who blast their music ALWAYS have the worst taste. It’s like a law of physics or something.

I just went and complained to my neighbour - face to face - about their noise. Next time I’ll send them a note. LoL

I find the story funny and I like the notes. The lady is just an eccentric. But so am I :)

I just went and complained to my neighbour - face to face - about their noise. Next time I’ll send them a note. LoL

I find the story funny and I like the notes. The lady is just an eccentric. But so am I :)

Oui, merci bien , très interessant.
Cela fait un moment que je cherchais de l’info.
Je te remercie
Julie :)

I lived in four family flat above an O.C.D., note-writing, phone calling neighbor who was also a control freak. She also didn’t let people into her apt . Every time she left or came home, she would slam (SLAM!) her door 20 x’s. Would also vacuum her floor (and apparently the wall coves) every morning. When I finally started ignoring the notes & calls after doing everything I could; she would follow me around and tap or hit her ceiling proportionate to the “noise” I was making in my socks. I felt like all I did was think about how my living affected her. One phone call I did take was about the ball my 6 lb. cat played with (rubber with noise buffering stubs on it). I threw it, asking if that was the noise she heard. “Yes.” Threw it again, “Did you hear that?” Yes. Didn’t throw it again; asked same. Same answer, “Yes”. This is why Jesus said, “Love they neighbor,” because it is sometimes the hardest thing you can do. When she moved out, after my trying to exchange pleasantries about the
weather, she gave me a cold look & said s.t. about karma. Either she was right or a true witch because, since then, I have had the worst neighbors. Latest one being friends with the landlord & jumping/screaming whenever my fan (central air) is on, plus his illegal renter (bedroom) wakes me up at 4am w/o fail.(No, don’t play music except with headphones, tv low and off at 10. Bedroom guy doesn’t like it if I walk into bedroom after 7pm and hits the wall to living room every time he hears me typing on my laptop which is on my lap, etc.) I wish I could turn back the karma clock. Or move into a house. This is like a post for Neighbors Anonymous.