I wrote my downstairs neighbor a note when his tv was really loud early one morning. My note said: “Would you please turn your television down in the morning? It is way too loud for 6:48 am.”
He replied by writing the above note to me on the back of my note to him.
I spent the next two years afraid of my downstairs neighbor, and basically put up with all kinds of loud noise at all hours of the day and night. Because I was afraid of him, I covered the hardwood floors in my apartment with carpet (I hate carpet) and worried constantly that he might break into my apartment someday when I wasn’t there and hurt my cat. He seemed crazy enough to do it.
I finally moved. I understand that the people who live above him now actually do purposely make noise to torment him. So he is in a hell of his own making.
Other People's Thoughts
Not a very tactful note, but we don’t really know what you wrote to him, either. And i do see some humour in it; “torture me day, and night” kinda funny depending on how you read it. The note says nothing about breaking in to harm your kitty. It’s mean and insulting, but there is no threat. I think you’d have to a bit paranoid to think that. The only sadness i see in this pic is someone begging for sympathy by playing the victim.
— David Srigley Sunday April 30, 2006 #
I fail to see the humor in this note. And I am sorry, that it fighten you. The stupidity and the cowardiliness your neighbor displayed in this note is the reason grown people can not resolve their problems easily. You are a better person than I am. Because I would’ve presented this note to management or the landlord, or beat the crap out of him. And he would had no one to blame but himself. It so cowardly, so I doubt he would have left the note on a grown man’s door, anyway!! P.S. An old neighbor knocked on the my door telling me my alarm woke them up as well as myself(at 4:30 am), I was so embarrassed & sorry, and just lowered the volume like a rational person.
— Franklin S. Sunday April 30, 2006 #
You… bounce balls across your floor?
— Me Monday May 1, 2006 #
What a horrible letter.I would suggest that it is so nasty you should burn it and burn up the negetive energy that he transferred to you through this note.let go and move on with your life
— kyle Monday May 1, 2006 #
Maybe you could’ve tried going downstairs and talking to the guy. You know, something like, “Hey, I’m sorry, I didn’t realize I was being loud. Let’s figure out how to not annoy each other and then coexist blissfully unaware of each other.”
Still, I can see how two years spent in paranoid fear of your cat’s wellbeing is a better choice.
— anescient Monday May 1, 2006 #
I completely disagree with David. It’s quite apparent that this letter is abusive, and would be scary to most women. Fear of violence is a big part of how most women make decisions everyday – whether or not to go down a dark alley, whether to walk home from a party at night rather than take a cab, and yes, whether to confront a seemingly irrational neighbour. Most men don’t have these same fears and don’t have to go through these thought processes, but rather most take for granted that they feel safe a lot of the time. Being dismissive when people tell you about stuff like this doesn’t help, either. Your home’s supposed to be your sactuary, and it’s easy to see how something like this can lead to alot of sleepless nights. I’m so glad you’ve finally moved.
— Cheryl Monday May 1, 2006 #
I happen to know about this incident. The downstairs neighhor was scary and beligerent, and the woman who posted this did try to talk to him rationally and civilly. He was horrible and abusive in ways she hasn’t posted here. This note is just one relic of that conflict. The tone of his voice was not funny, ever. She’s actually been quite tactful here. And: she was worried for her cat’s safety because some of his animosity was aimed at her cat. Also, she did post the contents of her note to him in the first paragraph. Take a look.
Even without that clarification, though, his note is inappropriate and abusive. I find it troubling—though unfortunately not terribly surprising—that there are those who would defend it. Now, that is sad.
I’m glad she moved, too.
— Elizabeth Monday May 1, 2006 #
I would have been pretrified to receive this note! “Fuck you bitch”?!?!? There is nothing funny here. I only hope that if I had received such a note that I would have mustered the courage to call the cops, although fear of the neighbour’s retribution could be a paralyzing situation. This guy clearly has anger issues, to put it mildly! He probably loved the fact that he intimidated you—I really empathize with your feelings in this situation. I am glad this story has a “happy” ending with your move out and his new neighbours who realize his hell. Thanks!
PS: I also agree with Kyle that you burn this letter! Bad energy or what!
— Clare Wednesday May 3, 2006 #
I FEEL BAD FOR YOU—PLEASE DON’T LET THIS NOTE FESTER IN YOUR SOUL—I KNOW SO MANY IGNORANT, MEAN PEOPLE—THEY DO AND SAY WHATEVER THEY WANT—REMEMBER, YOU REAP WHAT YOU SOW—LET THINGS HAPPEN TO THEM BECAUSE OF THEIR WICKEDNESS—I’M SURE YOU ARE A VERY GOOD PERSON WHO IS HAVING A TOUGH TIME TRYING TO FIGURE OUT MEAN, MEAN PEOPLE—TRY TO CONCENTRATE ON SOMETHING GOOD—LIKE THIS NOTE OF ENCOURAGEMENT!! GOD BLESS YOU-
— amy Sunday May 7, 2006 #
Although I thought the note was kinda of funny.. He shouldn’t have wrote the things that he did.
— J Tuesday May 9, 2006 #
I am with Cheryl, Elizabeth, Clare and Amy, This guy sounds demented and I am very happy for you moving out of their. Unfortunately there are people like that every where you go. They are truely the ones that give being human a bad name. You did the right thing by moving out and I hope you got better neighbors were you are now. Also, do burn that note, it does carry bad energy with it.
— Milton J Saturday May 13, 2006 #
Apartment Wars can get so out of hand, especially when you live directly above, below, or next to a complete lunatic. I empathize with you. I, too, play with my cat by bouncing soft rubber balls and I know how many dog owners look down on cat owners and the loud music and the fear of retaliation… I moved out of a studio after eight months because of all that, not to mention mysterious scuffs, scratches, and paint marks on my car virtually every day which drove me to start parking on the street, which was safer!
— jimmy Sunday May 14, 2006 #
I live in this building. My intro to the situation was when I came home one evening, with friends in tow, to see one of his notes on Alexandra’s door. We all found it disturbing. I reported it to the landlord, because it made me, a newcomer, uneasy, and because I thought he and others should know what’s going on, in case it escalates. Mr Rant is now at war with the new neighbors, two young women. Another neighbor, a man, says their car was keyed and that Mr. Rant is the chief suspect. One sad aspect of all this is, he seems to be his own worst enemy. I can look out my window and see the water and seed he places out for the backyard birds—signs of kindness and maybe sensitivity? He has spoken to me on the rare occasion, with neither good humor nor hostility. It seems difficult for him to address me, but he manages to keep it civil. So where does Mr. Rant’s misery really come from? Is it really about the noise? Doubtful. That’s just a trigger or an excuse. Did he suffer some personal trauma, which he now takes out on whomever he perceives to be the easiest target? Possibly. Or maybe he’s a mental time bomb waiting to “go postal.” So hard to tell. Whatever the case, this flimsy old crate we live in is clearly not someplace he should be. But I suspect he can’t afford to move, or is too depressed or ill to contemplate it.
— Terry Sunday May 14, 2006 #
I have a noisy neighbor who lives above me, and one to the side. If you do nothing, the noise continues, if you do something, the noise continues or, you get a nasty note like the one you received. I would have handed it to the police.
I “used” to say that everyone should try to work towards a “win-win” solution but, some people are just psycho. It’s a shame that you lived above one, but on a positive note, at least you’re out of there.
BUT, I would still contact the police with that note. Being a door mat is not necessarily the way to go.
— Mikey Tuesday May 23, 2006 #
If that ever happened to me I would be scared too. And all you asked was for your nebeior to turn the TV down thats sad
— Jennifer Saturday May 27, 2006 #
I can empathize totally, my downstairs neighbor is a total lunatic, and the landlady is old and senile, which she regularly takes advantage of. For instance, it was advertized that the apartment was for a single tenant only. So she said she was divorcing her husband. The problem is, not only is she still married to him, but he lives there, too. He is equally psychotic. It doesn’t help matters that they smoke a large quantity of pot, so much that I can’t blow the smoke out my window even with 2 fans. So I have to go to my job with a “contact high”. I kid you not. I have mentioned this to my landlady, the police, and the other tenants, who sympathized, but said there was nothing they could do about it because they were only committing Class A misdemeanors and would be back to terrorize me some more even if they had to spend a night or two in jail. The other night, she came home at 3 a.m. and slammed her door over and over, also the front door of our 20’s house that was converted into a multiplex. All those doors open into a cavernously echoing hallway that our doors also open into. That night, instead of myself trying to modify her behaviour, one of my other neighbors got mad, stomped down the back stairs to her back door, came back in, and slammed his door as hard as he possibly could. Which caused her to shut up for a few hours, then she resumed her hateful behaviour. This is usually a mild mannered, laid back individual (the other neighbor). And all this obnoxious behaviour from an individual who wrote a note to my neighbor across the hall from me, also a nice, reasonable person, that his cat was meowing too loud at 8 a.m. and would he please do something about it. He talked to me and I said, I can’t believe you’re taking that seriously. She was just trying to sleep one off. These people have an endless supply of money from somewhere and never work. It is my belief that someone is paying them to stay away from them. Thank you for letting me vent. Of course I would move immediately if I could find a place I could afford, which I have been unable to accomplish yet. Everything I’ve done so far has only brought me retaliation.
— Nashvillian Thursday June 15, 2006 #
Neighbor noise is a serious personal issue because not everyone on Earth has these issues. The note reminded me of Sept 12, 2001. I had to write a poster sized note for my filthy neighbors the day after the attacks because they kept leaving food garbage on or near my steps and I live across the river from WTC. There was fog (the dust) everywhere and daytime was dark and gloomy for weeks but these loud music playing, screaming to speak to each other, garbage dumping family couldn’t care less about what had just happened. I also never hated people until THEY moved next to me and I wasn’t raised that way but being tortured every single day with noise for 12-13 years will harden any person. When someone does something, address it imeediately. Don’t wait or no one in the law will care. I cannot function anymore in society or keep any job because of my neighbors past noise. I can’t sleep without pills and I can no longer trust human beings anywhere. I have been told to have Post Traumatic Stress Disorder because even when there is no noise, I am full of rage. When noise happens to you or someone you know, do something right away, legally speaking, or you will suffer the rest of your life for it. People cannot do whatever they feel like doing anytime, anywhere unless they live in a mansion on a hilltop. Sorry if this is weird sounding but I am thinking of calling it quits, so to speak and I don’t want to hurt my family. I live with some of them and they have suffered too but they are older and have lived their lives but I never got a chance. Guess it wasn’t meant to be. I am an example of what can happen when you are a victim and take no action, right away. You cannot let things go on and on because it won’t ever stop. Sorry if this seems macabre but I can’t even laugh anymore. Nothing matters so go to City Hall and get these jerks to obey the law.
A concerned US citzen
— Jersey male Friday August 25, 2006 #
I sympathize with all of you. My own apartment is in an old converted home with little to no insulation. I can hear the dialog of movies on my own portable DVD player at 1/3 volume outside of my apartment with two walls and a door between us – it is basically at the same volume outside that it is at inside. I believe that the floors are made out of 3/4” MDF – basically, a thin sheet of plywood. Given this information, I’m sure you can imagine what it is like to have an upstairs neighbor – ANY upstairs neighbor.
I basically live with earplugs in. I have a large collection of styles – pretty much anytime I see a style or brand that I do not already own, I purchase it in hope of finding a cure. Even so, deep resonating sounds like loud footsteps or bouncing balls are pretty much immune to even -33dB plugs – I guess you feel the noises instead of hearing them? You do eventually get used to sleeping with earplugs – at least over the fear of damaging your hearing. Going deaf sometimes seems like it would be a blessing.
Since I sometimes keep odd hours, I take special precautions to avoid making a lot of night-time noise. I do not own a television – I just know that it would be impossible to control the volume sufficiently in a place like this. Instead, I limit myself to a small portable DVD player. I got rid of my three-piece computer speakers (with subwoofer) to replace them with tiny tinny-sounding monitor speakers – monitor speakers that are usually silenced by virtue of my constant use of headphones. I try really, really hard to be considerate of my neighbors.
Naturally, I have no idea what kind of noises my upstairs neighbor hears me making. I imagine that despite my efforts to remain tolerable, he still hears evidence of my existence. I hear lots and lots of evidence of his. Seemingly loud and booming music, footsteps at all hours of the day and night, frequent entertaining of guests, what sounds like cans of soup being dropped day and night. It is positively atrocious. It feels like a personal assault. Despite the fact that I often feel that he’s waging some sort of war against me, I generally calm down and accept that he’s probably just trying to live his life.
I have never spoken to my neighbor, short of polite nods and greetings when we bump into each other while passing in or out of our domiciles. I have never attempted to mention the noise to him. If I accept that he isn’t making noise expressly to perturb me, then I don’t see how complaining would help prevent further noise – after all, he’s probably not doing anything overtly wrong. If he is making noise expressly for the purpose of annoying me, then complaining would only satisfy and encourage him. Instead, I am keeping my eyes and ears open for some solution more effective than earplugs.
Of course, if I ever come home to a note on my door complaining about noise emanating from my own apartment, then the gloves will come off. Sitting here, in my apartment right now, listening to the booming of my upstairs neighbor’s stereo, thinking about getting such a note is very upsetting. From the moment I got a complaint, it would be impossible for me to continue sheltering the notion that the noise pollution that I’ve suffered so severely from for so long was in fact inadvertent and inane. A return letter like the one the original poster received would probably only be the beginning of my retaliation efforts.
Sure, I’m sympathetic for you. It’s terrible that you lived in fear for two years or whatever. But, I also think that I might truly hate you. You’re obviously not the empathetic sort, but I wonder if you can tell where that emotion is coming from?
— po_boy Monday November 13, 2006 #
I “live” below two High-Heeled Hags from HELL who are not mature enough to realize that their floor happens to be my ceiling. At any given time of day or night, they relentlessly stomp back and forth when they are home. I swear that they have wrestling matches involving body-slam perfecting techniques. From past experience with such morons, I know that contacting the police does nothing more than elevate the issue, and have tried having a polite discussion with them – to no avail. Seems that stomping around like elephants with spiked heels really does not violate any noise laws. What to do? Although I am normally a rational person, I find myself conjuring ways to get even with them in EXTREMELY passive-aggresive ways. But even though I may never go through with the tire-slashing, or stringing dental floss accross the stairs so that they fall-and-die-a-hideous-death methods, the worst thing is that I feel that I am being PUSHED toward these extremes!! Fist step I am going to take is to duct-tape my dual phones to my ceiling below each of their bedrooms and continually call my own number when working third shifts. People need to realize that when TRYING to live comfortably in one’s homes is disrupted by assinine behavior, the victim can easily become irrational. I, for one, am weary of being Mr. Door-Mat for their stupidity. For God’s sake..at LEAST take the damn high-heels off at the door!!!
— Going Bonkers Monday November 20, 2006 #
I have a very similar problem and have no clue what to do. I moved into my apartment about 8 months ago and about 2 moths ago I’ve had a new landlord and new tenant above me and every single night monday-Friday all they do is scream and blast music between the hours of 4-7am Sometimes it even sounds like they’re wrestling by means of pounding on the floor above me, it’s driving me insane, I’m trying to get of my apartment and have been putting up flyers to do this however i have recieved next to no contacts yet. Please tell me from your past experiance if there is another way out of my apratment, by means of just leaving???
— Jackie Monday December 4, 2006 #
I have a very similar situation with my downstairs neighbor. She is a women. We live in a high end condo here in NYC. If war is what this jerk wants give it too him. He probably does not have the gut for a real confrontation. I called the poilice and got her arrested for scratching my car. Ive gotten the condo to remove her gardening rights in the common back yard. I run my dishwasher at 2:00 am on a timer, You may wish to leave him some dirty kitty litter as a present. bottom line don’t back off— get an order of protection and then use it. Call the fire department if you suspect anything is “wrong” in his apt when he is out. Those guys love breaking down doors and guess what?? most local laws protect them from any financial responsiblility. You are above him use the high ground to gain every advantage, water works too. A little creative thinking should easily convince him that its time to move
— Tom Friday May 4, 2007 #
I am so sorry you had to deal with this nightmare of a (poor excuse) for a human being. I, too, am having problems, albeit with my upstairs neighbour. He has had two eviction letters sent to him because he has been purposely harassing me. The latest is drawing on my mailbox. I am so tempted to retaliate, but in the end I win because the landlord is on my side and he is inches close to an eviction order. Please do not let these low lives that live among us convince you (and others who are dealing with bullying of this and similar nature) question yourself. I fell victim to this line of thinking. All I did was stand up for myself with a small but noisy group of tenants who were making our lives a living hell with their loitering. Now I am the target of a harassment campaign by a lonely and desperate man. Clearly, one with a life would have no time or patience to spend so much energy on such hatred. Truly, they are so filled with self-hatred and loathing that they have to find a scapegoat to feel better.
— Michelle Friday July 13, 2007 #
i live beneath someone.
they bang, drag furni and slam doors and stomp. my ceiling shakes.
i have to turn my telly up but the banging just gets louder.
he may have been putting his telly on to avoid hearing you stomp. unless you live under someone who forgets there is some one below you will never know the anger that builds up in side your head and the headaches that come with it. i doubt a telly on too loud would be any where as bad as putting up with LOW frequency noise from stomping and banging and dragging etc. 6.48 am most people who work are up at that time. sounds better is you say nearly 7 O’clock. most school kids are up. i’m disabled and im up. because the dragging and banging starts at 5.30 am and carries on and on its still going on at 1 am. I suggest you stop banging and stomping and i bet the telly and noise repraisal stops. You should think what you do before you moan about a little telly.
any one who has wooden flooring above some one else is not thoughtful either.
to top it all you think its great that he is still suffering from something you started.
you deserve nothing short of a prison cell. you caused stress then run away from it. what goes round comes round lady.
— The sufferer Saturday September 22, 2007 #
I’ve lived with loud crazy people above and below me for years. That’s just the nature of city living. My former downstairs neighbors used to fight and then have very loud makeup sex routinely at 3 a.m. My former upstairs neighbors had a young child that used to stomp around and throw things. The point is there are ways to address other humans without resorting to obscenities and threats. If you’ve gotten to that point you’ve probably let it fester inside for far too long. Once I called the police on my downstairs neighbors because I thought he was beating the shit out of his girlfriend. I never heard a peep from them after that. Now I live on a street with a bar. If you live in the city and have a problem with noise you really have 2 choices, move to the country or buy earplugs.
— Matt Monday September 24, 2007 #
I have a downstairs neighbor from hell also… Due to the fact that she is a 69 year old lady, i thought i had nothing to back up my frustrations. Turns out that the home owners association has a 2” file on her complaints.
I was thinking that you should have asked your neighbor to go to church with you, GOD is a serious reality check.
— Tony Tuesday October 2, 2007 #
That note is awesome dude. Why are you scared? Are you not a man? You cannot face reality these days. Have you been spoonfed your entire life?
— Dave Brown Monday December 17, 2007 #
Dave, does Alexandra sound like a man’s name to you?
— Matt Friday December 21, 2007 #
If your from Iowa it is
— Dane Tuesday December 25, 2007 #
That note was totally uncalled for. Retaliation is something I’m dealing with myself. I live below a woman and her 5 year old daughter. Before they moved in, there lived a wonderful couple who made my living below them trouble-free. The woman who moved in allows her daughter to yell, scream, and cry on a daily basis without regard to the fact that it’s audible to the neighbors. Then she purchased a small dog, who cried (sounded like a baby screaming) whenever they were gone (which was often). I spoke with her twice rather politely about the dog making noise. The second time I called her about this issue, resulted in her beginning to stomp around her condo in an effort to disturb me. Because there was no resolution with the dog’s noises and the fact that I was going to be listing my condo for sale and didn’t want to scare of potential buyers by the sound of the dog, I let the association know of the problem. They then notified the woman and told her that I had spoke with them about it. She proceeded then to call me and scream at me on the phone for 20 minutes (so loudly that I could hear her through the ceiling as well as through the phone). I thought about hanging up on her because she would not let me speak, but I feared that she would come down and bang on my door. After this, she’s since left me messages that my television is too loud, etc. I admit I’ve turned the volume up a bit louder than it had been, but it’s nothing unreasonable and I’ve only done that to drown out the noise of her stomping around. I know how this person felt threatened because although my neighbor is a woman, her actions have caused me to feel threatened (although threatened by more retaliatory behavior against me, rather than physical harm). I’m afraid to go to my association to notify them of the situation because I fear they will notify her and she will again berate me over the phone or possibly in person and cause more problems for me living below her. I hope my unit sells quickly so I can get out of this situation.
— k-354 Wednesday January 16, 2008 #
The note is altogether a bunch of ****. A bitchy note on the door is the last thing you want to see. Especially if you have had a crappy day. I would have asked the person to turn the TV down in person. If they blew me off, I would simply explain that I live above them and I have the ability to make their living arrangements unbearable. Also, I have seen much sadder things. Like the holocaust. I can’t qualify this as even close to the saddest thing. Not trying to sound like a jerk, but seriously you need to get a picture of a starving kid and print it. Then you have something even sadder to own. If I had not been bored out of my mind I would never have even read this page. The nasty note is what caught my attention. Actually if my neibor had not called the city about my back yard having a leaf pile in it instead of knocking on my door, I would not be looking up NEIBOR RETALIATION on Google either. I would have told him I was sorry for whatever inconvenience it was causing him and I would have picked it up that evening. Instead I will probably throw a package or two of wildflower seeds on his beautiful lawn he waters every day. We live in a desert and people die from running out of water every day. Who is the real jerk here? I guess it depends on your perspective. Putting yourself in someone else’s shoes can almost always solve problems between people.
— Max Wednesday June 11, 2008 #
I find this note hilarious but only because I didn’t find it on my doorstep (yet). I have miserable downstairs neighbors who complain about everything – I mean everything. They’ve complained about when we shower! Am I supposed to stop showering? Apartment living sucks.
— Tion Tuesday January 26, 2010 #
I would never have approached him. I would have complained to the landlord and let him/her handle it. On the other hand, having lived beneath someone and currently living beneath a stomper, I can see things from both angles. Having someone constantly stomping above you and making normals even if its unintentional and just normal noise of daily living is not pleasant. It can seriously disrupt your peace of mind and make you say, think and do very irrational things you normally wouldn’t do. I am not taking up for this man because he was clearly out of line. However, perhaps he was already fustrated with whatever noise he was enduring and whatever else was going on in his life that you do not know about and then to receive a note complaining about him making noise may have put him over the edge.
The sad truth is there is alot of people in our society who are like ticking time bombs. You just dont know who you are dealing with or what will set a person over the edge. The best advice is always: Let the landlord handle it or leave it alone and move. I learned the hard way as I ended up being threatened by a neighbor who was a drug addict and I had to go to the police. Until I could move I lived every day in constant fear of retaliation as even the police told me this individual was dangerous and that I should move for my own safety.
The point is you don’t know what your dealing with when you approach people, you don’t know their backgrounds or what issues they have or what might be going on in their minds. So the best thing to do is to exercise caution and let the landlord handle it or move if you can. I know thats what I plan to do for future reference.
— bottomfloordweller Tuesday March 16, 2010 #
The Saddest Thing I Own is a 2005 commission of New Radio and Performing Arts, Inc., (aka Ether-Ore) for its Turbulence web site. It is supported by the Jerome Foundation in celebration of the Jerome Hill Centennial and in recognition of the valuable contributions of artists to society.