Get ready, this story of the neighbors from the mouth of hell is a long, intricate and infuriating one. It reads like an episode of "Serial," minus all the murdering, and it is a story all people can relate to some time in their lives.
This domestic saga begins with a man going to introduce himself to his new downstairs neighbors, which is apparently what people who don't live in New York do sometimes. He gave them his cell phone number, and mentioned he has an electronic drum kit, which he uses for around half an hour at 4:00, when he gets home from work.
All that seems like a nice thing to do, right? Wrong. All of that was a terrible and irrevocable error with severe consequences.
This is the first text he received from the neighbors. Note that as he explains, “drinking” here is an autocorrect of “drumming.”
The guy explains in his post,
I asked her that if is ever a bother, or wakes up the baby, or if we're ever too loud at ALL, to please let us know. Now, I had done this with all previous tenants, and never gotten one complaint. The very next morning, I receive the text above.
He even placed memory foam under the electronic drum kit to lessen the sound. Let me reiterate: The drum kit is electronic. If you've never seen one of these, here is the guy's kit. The whole point of it is it's not very loud.
Texts like the following came constantly now. He would get them within a minute of starting.
Then, the neighbors branched out to policing other sounds. The winky-face usage was getting out of hand.
The guy wrote,
This specific example was when I was at work. My girlfriend was at home watching TV when I got this text. She later sent me a video of how loud it was, and I could barely make out dialogue on the TV. Meanwhile, we could hear their stereo most days and nights without cease.
Then, the passive aggression allegedly turned into straightforward aggression.
The weird thing is this guy received no text -- after specifically asking his neighbors to mention if it was too loud -- until 10 pm about not playing after 8 pm. But, he and his friend stopped playing at 6:30.
Within fifteen minutes, the man of the house (let's call him... Mr. Whiny-pants) came sprinting up the stairs, and pounded on our door. He demanded that we stop, and paced back and forth in front of the door while he spoke. He made a large spectacle about it, to the point where my girlfriend was a bit nervous about him getting physical.
Rocking is exactly what you don't want him to do anymore. By the way, these drum kits are used with headphones, and as he explains: “I could use this thing without waking up my girlfriend sleeping in the next room.”
But still, he would get the texts. Eventually, he was only able to play once every other week. He'd ask his neighbors to reply when it was OK to drum again, but they wouldn't answer, so eventually he stopped replying.
Now, it was his turn to dip his toes in the boiling seas of passive aggression.
The best thing is everyone clearly hates each other here, but is still attempting to seem chill. The whole time, he finds out, his neighbors have been complaining to the landlords.
Unfortunately for them, he'd never missed a payment and had never had a complaint against him from the previous three tenants.
Then, he'd had enough and just told the complainer he was going to have band practice on Wednesdays from 6-8 pm.
I'll let the guy describe the next part himself. At this point, this story goes from funny to all-out war.
As you can see, I got a text just shy of 8PM. I replied cordially, and tactfully. Within seconds, Mr. Whiny-pants was POUNDING on the ceiling with his fists as hard as he could, enough to possibly cause damage to the ceiling itself. Then, I heard sprinting up the stairs outside. He kicked our door. I opened it to find him red-faced, and clenching his fists. He started laying into me about how I can't be doing what I was doing, and shrieked on and on. I explained to him my previous courtesies, and lamented about how I couldn't even do this once. He kept getting in my face about the matter, so I told him simply that I was doing complying to texts. I was done being courteous if all I was going to get in return was hostility. He stormed down the stairs saying something about me regretting this.
This poor guy stopped drumming for weeks, which was taking a toll on him and making him depressed.
And the whole time this fight is going on, his neighbors are doing everything in their apartment with the volume extra loud.
When finally he plays again thinking his neighbors were out, they come up and threaten to get the police involved.
I picked up a little bit more. I played once a week, but ONLY when they were gone. I would stop when I saw them come home... I must've missed a few moments, because I found this note on my door the other day. Needless to say, I've been quite depressed since. That night, they had their volume up extra loud. And it's been like that ever since. I'm guessing that they're either flaunting a victory, or just feel invulnerable to the circumstances. The next day, Mrs. Whiny-pants comes up to our door while I'm at work and speaks to my girlfriend. She explains to her that 'this would've all never happened if we were just friends,' making this sound like an extortion for friendship. She also said that they were beginning to think that they were going to have to get the cops involved soon, because 'whenever we call to complain to the office anymore, they just hang up on us.' ...I know this may not seem like a big deal to you, but drumming has helped me through a lot of bad times in my life, and I feel grounded when I do it. I don't know how many of you have a ritual or practice that helps you stave off depression, but this was mine. And not only have they taken it from me, they flaunt it to me.
All this brings us to the following moment.
(Side note: “Rick and Morty” is amazing. Go watch it right now. Or, well, finish reading, and then go watch.)
Unfortunately, like all of Shakespeare's greatest plays, this story does not have a happy ending.
The guy explained,
I can't afford to move. I'm to the point where I fear Mr. Whiny-pants will start something physically, or Mrs. Whiny-pants will try to get us evicted. I'm scared. Depressed. And I see Mr. Whiny-pants outside looking in my window whenever he's outside.
He shared this all on Imgur, and at the end, asked what he should do.
The commenters had varying responses. Some were more helpful than others.
The most reasonable solution is this, of course:
The post was put up only yesterday and already has over 360,000 views on Imgur. We will update as the story develops. Now to be clear, this is all from this guy's point of view. But if he's to be believed, this is some unacceptable behavior from his neighbors.
What would you do in this situation? It's important you know because, at some point, every American finds himself or herself in a version of this. Prepare your strategies before it's too late.
My advice for this guy would be to try to follow the commenters' advice to have management come over and listen. And if management refuses, or if that doesn't work, just be the biggest dickhead ever whenever he saw these people -- just constantly tell them they have BO and they look like they rape dogs or whatever.
And then, sadly, I would tell him to just go to a friend's house to play instead. After all, it's not worth losing an apartment over. And take it from me, calling someone a dog raper can really make you feel a lot better.