First, I’d like you to read the disclaimer I added to the bottom of my last post, WTF:
It has since been brought to my attention by a couple of my compassionate, church-going friends that perhaps this person came straight from a food bank. Ok, it’s possible. I think this goes without saying, but I’ll say it anyway: It is not my intention to make fun of anyone for being less fortunate. Whatever he is, he took out a BAG of MILK in public and sucked it dry. Next to ME of all people. THAT is what’s funny, regardless of his situation. So I apologize if anyone was offended by this post.
A BAG of MILK.
Ok, now we can move on to more important things, like how my ceiling banging, note-leaving neighbour met her match and now has to live her life in fear of ME. LITTLE OL’ ME. *strums fingers like Mr. Burns*
If you are new to my blog, welcome! And before reading the rest of this post, I suggest you first read My neighbour (and my vacuum) can suck it! in which you meet my psychotic neighbour who left me a mind-fuck of a note for vacuuming at 2:30 IN THE AFTERNOON. If you have some time, you can also read the follow-ups from that week, Oh no. Now I’m the Note Nazi. and A third note. No joke. Does nobody want to talk to me?!, to get the full back story of my note-receiving history and how I feel towards spineless note leavers. Then, I can guarantee maximum pleasure from what you are about to read.
This past Friday evening (the day after WTF happened), three girlfriends of mine came to visit for dinner, a night out and a sleepover. This is a VERY rare occasion. I haven’t had this many people over in months. Three people. Seriously.
They arrived at 5:30pm with their bags in hand and excitedly greeted me at my door. Not two steps into my apartment did we hear BANG BANG BANG from beneath my floor. They stopped in shock.
“Is that your neighbour?” one of my friends asked.
No joke, this is what I said: “Guys, I’ve been doing some research and I think the sound I’ve been hearing for the past few months is the sound of the pipes. It’s called ‘water hammer.’ It’s an actual thing!”
I had seriously convinced myself recently that there’s no way my neighbour actually bangs on her ceiling that many times a day when I’m just walking around or moving a chair or accidentally dropping a spoon on the floor. I deemed it impossible that a person would be that, um, special.
All three of them looked at me like I had two heads.
“Lauren, that’s definitely your neighbour banging on the ceiling.” They stomped back.
“NO NO NO, STOP!” I exclaimed. “I know you’re right. But I don’t want to stoop to her level.”
Saint. Martyr. Hero. I know, these are just some of the words going through your head right now to describe me. But I’m just a simple person, guys. No need to think such things. I just do what I can.
So we left for dinner and returned to have a few drinks before heading out to a bar. We talked and laughed and played some music at a moderate volume until around 11:30pm when we left for the bar. One of my friends opened the door to my apartment on our way out.
“Uhhhhh, Lauren. You’ve got to see this.”
Sitting innocently on the green-carpeted floor of the hallway right outside my door———was a fucking note.
In the hallway, yes.
In the hallway, a place we couldn’t conceivably find it until we left the apartment, which, for all the note leaver knew, could have been the next day if we decided not to go out.
(OHHHHHHH BOY, READERS, I CAN’T WAIT UNTIL YOU READ THIS AND FEEL THE FURY!!!!)
Here is what it said (ignore my signature arrowed commentary for now):
Take it in.
Take it alllllllllllllll in.
She did not ONCE give us any verbal indication that she was disturbed. Not even enough bangs on the ceiling for us to notice. We turned the music down around 10:30pm and played it straight from my laptop instead of my TV speakers. We were four girls chit-chatting and sipping cocktails. One of us was pumping and dumping breast milk for chrissakes–this was the furthest thing from a raging party. Ok, we did blast “Since You’ve Been Gone” by Kelly Clarkson at one point, but that was IT. It was a Friday night. I NEVER have people over. I figured a normal person could let it go.
It’s my own fault for forgetting who I was dealing with.
As you can imagine, this note INFURIATED me. It’s one thing to leave me stupid little notes and bang on the ceiling–that I can handle. But bringing the landlord into this? This is what you do AFTER you’ve asked the person to be quiet several times and they don’t listen. What was she thinking?!
My mind was swirling with scenarios. What if my landlord now had the impression, based on one incident, that I was a crazy party girl being disruptive all the time? He doesn’t know that I’ve been putting up with loud banging on a regular basis, which is WAY more disruptive than my footsteps on a creaky floor in an old building in the middle of the day. He doesn’t know my side of the story! What if he wants to kick ME out after all of this?!
I had a few drinks in me, so I wasn’t thinking clearly. If I wasn’t drunk, I would have realized that my landlord never called me that night to ask me to keep it down. So obviously he wasn’t taking her complaint seriously.
Naturally, I wrote back and slipped the note back under her door before hopping into the cab.
I was clearly intoxicated. I now see that she was telling me she will be getting up at 6:00am the next morning, not that she got up at 6:00am that morning, which is why I tried to best her by sharing that I was running on even less sleep, so there. And a typo, how embarrassing: …friends over for until 11:30pm on a Friday night. But seriously, they were only over for until 11:30pm on a Friday night. That’s reasonable! The people who live above me have regular Friday and Saturday night soirees and I’ve never complained. That’s life in a public dwelling! (Public dwelling. Love it. That’s not the only time I use the expression.)
This situation was on my mind for the whole night and really killed my buzz. All I wanted was to be able to tell my landlord my side of the story so he wouldn’t have a bad impression of me.
The next morning, as my guests slept in the living room, I woke at 6:30am and stirred in my bed for hours. I planned in my mind what I would say to my landlord when I talked to him later. I even made some notes. I wanted him to know about all the bullshit I had been putting up with for months.
I knew that the laundry room door gets unlocked at 9:00am every morning, so at 8:45am, I sat outside it hoping to run into him. Turns out, he pays someone in my building to unlock the door everyday. Damn. I went back to my room, stirred a bit more, and then decided 9:30am was a decent time to call someone on a Saturday morning. Especially if that person is a landlord. They always have to be on call for emergencies, right?
His phone went straight to voicemail. My message went a little something like this:
“Hi Tom, it’s Lauren from ____ street, unit 8. I’ve been having some issues with the person living below me. I feel silly even having to talk to you about this because we’re adults and should be able to work it out, but from what I understand from the note she left me last night, she’s already brought you into this, so I just want to make sure you hear my side of the story. She made no attempt to tell me I was being noisy last night when I had three girlfriends over and she just left a note in the hallway that I didn’t see until later in the evening. I want you to know that I have been putting up with her leaving notes and banging on the ceiling on a regular basis for a while now. I’ve tried to have a conversation with her but she won’t answer when I knock on her door. The noise that she hears is just a by-product of living in an older building with creaky floors and any noise that I make is just me walking around and living a quiet life. I just want to make sure you know there is another side to this story and when you get a chance, would you mind calling me back so I can explain? Thanks and have a nice weekend.”
I figured I wouldn’t hear from him until Monday, because, understandably, who wants to deal with this petty situation on a weekend?
In the meantime, I wrote my own little note to my neighbour. This is what you get when you cross a writer:
Oh ya, I forgot to tell you! I got a treadmill last week! It’s a family hand-me-down so it was free! I’ve always wanted one but didn’t think it would fit in my place. I did some rearranging (imagine the BANG BANG BANG’s I endured while moving furniture around) and made it fit! I had planned on giving her a heads up about it anyway, so I just killed two birds with one stone with this note.
Also, the “police officer friend of mine” who I “consulted” is actually just me asking my friend to text her police officer dad about the situation. I felt it was time to say something mildly threatening to scare her. He actually first suggested giving her a picture of me biting off the head of a rat, but also said I could say what I said.
So it was a bang-free weekend. No response from her. Nothing.
Monday morning (yesterday), I got a call from my landlord. He apologized for getting back to me so late(?) and said it was because he wanted to talk to my neighbour first. Turns out, he’s been well-aware of her antics for quite some time. He said she’s been pulling this stuff ever since she moved in–leaving notes and banging on the ceiling with the previous tenants who lived in my place before me, and constantly leaving him notes in his office. He said he was waiting to speak to her in person (which for her, is obviously difficult to arrange) so he could tell her that he doesn’t think this is a suitable place for her to live and that her intolerance is disrupting the people who live here. He told her she needs to either find another place to live, or stop bothering the tenants. He told me that if she bangs on the ceiling or leaves me a note one more time, to call him right away and he will EVICT HER. (My landlord is a very mild-mannered man and I could tell that he had reached a breaking point.) He apologized profusely for the suffering I’ve endured (he actually used the word suffering) and probably three times before we hung up, again emphasized not to hesitate to tell him if she bothers me again and he will EVICT her right away.
I have the POWER to EVICT a person from their home.
He also mentioned in the conversation that she has left him many notes asking for him to ask me to “walk lighter.” Can you imagine that scene? A middle-aged timid man asking a woman in her late-twenties to walk lighter?
“Are you calling me fat?!” would naturally be my response.
You know how I’m going to walk lighter, bitch? A TREADMILL. I’ll use it until my footsteps are lighter than the notes you throw on the floor.
That evening (last night), as I sat watching the season premiere of The Bachelorette, a note was slipped under my door. I knew what it was. I was waiting for it.
“Tenant in #1.” Really? After all this, you can’t tell me your name? That’s not very neighbourly.
Hey, wait a minute.
This is a note.
A note, after my landlord told me he will EVICT her if she leaves me one more note……hmmmmmm……
Excuse me while I put on my tap shoes and run on my treadmill without a care in the world!