Quiet-List 1997

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Re: Dealing With Noisy Neighbors


Hmmm, depends a little on the ages, but I did hear of one chap who 
sent the children (three under five) some really nice greasy crayons
as a present at Christmas.  The kid thought it was wonderful of course
and quietened down somewhat ... They also did lots of nice pretty 
decorative artwork on the walls of the unit - which apparently went
down a treat with the Landlord. :)  

Large, permanent, marker pens would be just about as good!

Plaster bandages and a booklet of instructions on how to make casts of
things might be similarly interesting for slightly older kids.

One thing that stirred my imagination when I was a kid, was a stage
show  promoter who did not want people to take photos of his stars
on stage.  He would always ask that they didn't but inevitably there
were those who disregarded that request.  So, he installed a couple
of dozen high powered, high speed re-cycling flash units around the
stage.  When anyone tried to take a flash the high powered flashes
would auto-trigger - ice-creaming the audience and the potential photo.  
Only one person ever tried to flaunt the rules at each concert!!  
(Besides being no point, audience restrained the rest.)

Perhaps hiring a couple of "earth mover" type speakers from a PA
shop and strapping them up to the ceiling would have the same effect. 
Every time they make a noise it comes back really loud at them ..
or maybe give them a primordial earthquake in the middle of the
night.  That sort of activity is really crossing the Rubicon, but
it may have some applications.

I wonder sometimes if it is possible to do a resonant regeneration
of a soundfield - so that with relatively little energy one can 
create a really annoying hum in their bedroom (you probably have
the dimensions already if the layout of your unit is the same).
You will probably need to get an active sound blocking headset
for yourself though to get you through a couple of nights. 

I recall that a University student (of Electronic Engineering) on 
the last night of his stay, taking revenge on his landlord (who
shared a common wall) who had constantly messed up his study and sleep 
with loud music.  The student borrowed all the loudspeakers he could 
from his mates (36 all up with corresponding amps), lined them up at 
a suitable distance from the wall and fed them all the same signal ... 
from a sound effects record.

Around 3:00 am the landlord thought the end had come when he woke 
to the sound of "aircraft dive and explosion", and later, "head on
crash of two freight trains".  The flat next door of course was
locked and dark.  It was completely deserted the following morning.

In truth, I don't like your chances solving the problem, and the above
suggestions are admittedly quite vengeful ... but thinking up ways of 
engaging their quiet muscles might keep your mind off things a little.
There might be ways in which to influence them to act differently, but
I guess there is only a finite amount of effort which one can devote
to such an exercise. 

I wouldn't really recommend any of those ideas since it is always better
to solve the problems through logic and reason and peaceful means ...
simple reason says that you should never pick a fight with a gunfighter.
If you argue with someone stupid they will bring you down to their
level ... and beat you on experience.

Besides, they aren't particularly nice things to do, and in all fairness
you wouldn't like people to change your mind in that way ...

Peaceful is probably best.

Kindest Regards,

Sean C writes:
> I hope this isn't too off-topic for this group, as discussions here seem to
> be more on the activist level, but I have a problem with a hideous noisy
> neighbor from Hell and I don't know what to do about it.
> Specifically, the main problem is that the familly above me keeps late
> hours, and they stomp real loudly on the floors, and let their kids run
> around like animals until 2am every single night. They also do all their
> housework, like vacuuming and hammering, after 10 pm whenever they do it.
> It is impossible for me to get to sleep before 2am unless I am absolutely
> exhausted.
> [...]

      "Creativity and innovation are measured not by what is done,
           but by what could have been done ... but wasn't"

Charles Willock                                 charlesw@cse.unsw.edu.au
School of Computer Science and Engineering          Ph:  +61 2 9385 6626
University of New South Wales,                      Fax: +61 2 9385 5995
New South Wales  Australia  2052    http://www.cse.unsw.edu.au/~charlesw

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