How to handle a noisy neighbor (Streisand edition)


There’s 3-4 Middle Eastern guys that live directly behind me, so their balcony looks down on me (as does anyone under 30). They’re insanely loud when they talk in Arabic to each other, which is often on the balcony, even after midnight. I lie in bed at night, half seething about how disrespectful they are, and half baffled that even inches apart they have to yell to communicate.

I usually run through the angry old man things to do, like call the police or complain to their building manager, but sometimes I fantasize about walking out beneath their balcony and just having an insanely loud fake phone call for 20 minutes. When our eyes finally meet and their arms are up in the air like “WTF???” I’d just smile and give them a neighborly wave, then get back to yelling on the phone.

Plan B has me facing a giant flat screen playing gay porn out my bedroom window, in plain view of their balcony, which I’m assuming would make the balcony less enticing to a group of Middle Eastern guys. Although this is Hollywood and the neighboring balconies would probably be stacked with shirtless guys sipping mojitos and jockeying for position.

I’ve also considered facing a speaker out my bedroom window, and looping Streisand’s “Don’t Rain on my Parade” until they go insane and fling themselves off the balcony. The downside is that it may make them declare Jihad on me — or worse, on Barbra.

(I just noticed the only tools in my revenge arsenal are gay clichés. Maybe I should try to hairdress them to death.)

Today’s yelling started early — and for a moment I considered doing the neighborly thing. What if I just brought them over some homemade cookies, and nicely asked them to keep it down on the back balcony – at least after midnight? What if they were friendly and cool and apologetic? What a breakthrough that would be.

Or what if I brought them a bottle of Patrón and made them do tequila shots with me, as I explained the problem? Then I’m just the fun, party neighbor who gets them, but also likes to sleep at night. We’d be drunk and laughing and they’d give me some crazy nickname in Arabic that’s probably offensive but I’d never find out. An hour later when I finally leave we’d be laughing and hugging goodbye, and one of the hugs goes on a little longer than it should have and when I pull away our eyes meet and — well at this point, the fantasy starts going in a direction I hadn’t even considered but the point is we’re all getting along REALLY well, and the noise is never again a problem.

I wonder – will I finally do the right thing – reach out and communicate? Or just internalize my rage, have a glass of wine, and blog about it?

The suspense is killing me.

Leave a Reply