The Dick Next Door(2)

By: Simone Sowood

I’ve complained to the landlord, via my agent. I hate that I rented through an agent. I’ve never actually spoken to my landlord, and I’d really, really like to give him an earful. Giving my agent an earful just doesn’t have the same therapeutic value.

All the agent ever says to me is, “The landlord will speak to him about it.”

Thanks. That helps.

I open the cupboard and take out a glass. As I’m filling it with water, dick really outdoes himself. He thinks he’s playing the encore of a performance at the Astrodome.

Water overflows my glass, and I slam it onto the counter, sloshing water everywhere.

I snap. Without even bothering to turn the tap off, I grab my broom and bash it against my ceiling.

I carry on bashing it through my kitchen and into the living room, until I’m directly under the fucking drum set.

It’s so noisy that there’s no way he could hear my bashing over his banging, so I start timing my broom bashing with his beat.

“Fuck you, dick!”

I fling my broom up with all my strength. It goes straight through my ceiling and hits the floor boards. Whatever, I don’t even care. I carry on with his beat.

Boom, badda boom.

Bang my broom and yell “What’s the matter with you?”

Boom, boom, crash, bang.

Bang my broom and yell “Shut the fuck up!”

Boom, da, boom, crash.

Bang my broom and yell “I’m trying to sleep!”

Why do I feel like I performing in a German industrial band?

A neat little hole is forming in my ceiling. Fine, better access to the floor boards.

We continue our percussion duet. Plaster and pieces of ceiling debris rain down on me. Still we continue, until my throat is raw and my arms ache.

I can’t believe asshole didn’t pause once. He didn’t didn’t give any indication that he even heard my efforts to shut him up. And unless there’s a one way sound proofing going on, there’s no way he didn’t hear me.

What a fucking dick.

It’s nearly four, and I’m fully awake after the broom thumping. There must be something I can do.

Sitting on the sofa, I open my laptop and dim the screen down to a tolerable four am level. I start typing:

Dear Dick,

You are the most selfish person on the planet. Your late night drumming is ruining my life but I don’t suppose you are capable of thinking about anyone but yourself.

I have lived here far longer than you, and it would be unfair if you are the reason I have to move out and leave my previously ideal home.

I don’t know what your problem is or why you won’t answer your door and speak to me like a normal human being. Would it be so hard for you to simply talk to me and work out a solution? The solution being you stop drumming in the middle of the night. Or perhaps soundproof your apartment?

The landlord has been informed about your intolerable behavior. If you do not change, I will be forced to involve the authorities.

I am more than happy to discuss this matter in person, you know where to find me.


Your sleep deprived neighbor.

Satisfied, I run into the entrance hall, Zip up the stairs and shove the note under his door. I head back to bed and bury my head under the pillow.

Chapter 2

I’m struggling to stay awake. Leaning on the meeting table, I prop my head up with my hand. I’ve given up trying to follow and contribute to the marketing discussion. Instead, all my energy is spent on keeping my eyelids open.

It’s now Thursday, and I’ve been like this all week.

The Dick upstairs has been banging his drums every night. The hole in my ceiling has gotten bigger from me pounding on it with various items. Anything that I think will be loud enough to be heard over the drums.

I reported both the banging and the need for my ceiling to be repaired to the agent, but so far neither have been dealt with.

“Lily?” My boss, John, says.

“Yeah?” I say hesitantly.

“Are you awake?” he asks.

My cheeks burn red as the eyes of all six people in the meeting turn to me.

“Sorry, I’ve been having problems with my neighbor making noise at night and I haven’t gotten any sleep this week.”

“Why don’t you go home and get some rest now.”

The redness spreads from my cheeks all the way down my neck, and up to my hairline. I don’t know if he’s being nice, or is really pissed off at me.

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