Monday, October 31, 2005
Advice, Please

What the best way of asking someone -- nicely, of course -- to shut the fuck up already?

There are these two guys with whom I share a wall, y'see -- they're nice guys, and I get along well with one of them in all ways but music appreciation (apparently). But Jesus Fucking Christ in a chicken finger basket do these guys generate a lot of noise. It starts in the morning with the endless Jessica Simpson (up to eleven, baby!) while they get ready for class, continues throughout the day in bursts just long and intense enough to completely fuck my concentration and focus, and trails off most nights in the form of rumbly bass from movie soundtracks, often lasting until 1 or 2 in the morning.

The crux of the problem is that their noise-making equipment sits exactly on the wall that separates their room from mine. Their speakers are, for all intents and purposes, about six inches from my head when I lie in bed at night. I hear every note they play, every syllable of every karaoke performance, every episode of Fraggle Rock -- if it happens in their room, I'm an unwitting party to it. It's like I'm a third roommate, except that I get no say in anything that happens in there.

I've tried to be cool. This is a college dorm, not part of the civilized adult world, and so most nights I stuff my ears with earplugs, grit my teeth, and mutter obscenities until they STFU and go to bed. Then I have a couple of precious hours in which to work before I pass out, and then I get five hours of uninterrupted sleep before Jessica Simpson starts knocking out her mediocre cover tunes again.

This has been an exercise in zen-like patience and tolerance on my part. You try waking up out of peaceful dreams to the same shitty pop song (on repeat) every morning for a month and see if you don't feel like buying a semi-automatic and shooting some shit up. So while I doubt anyone under the age of 25 would see it this way, I have been more than generous and giving in this situation -- and only because, as I said, these are basically nice guys. They're just nice guys with expensive speakers and intensely bad taste in music (which is one of the most socially dangerous combinations in western civilization).

But now things are different. Now I've got less than a month to finish the most in-depth academic work of my life thus far -- and in response it seems like these two are just getting louder. They're not technically breaking any dorm rules, but they are genuinely fucking with my work. And that has to stop. So I ask again: what's the best way of asking someone -- nicely, of course -- to shut the fuck up already?

Anyway...

Last night after the late van run I hung around the maintenance parking lot and gawked at Mars for fifteen or twenty minutes. I counted up my very modest repretoire of constellations, clearly saw Scorpio for the first time ever, and made exactly the same wish on no less than five shooting stars. Back in Mississippi I have a telescope but there's always too much light pollution to see much through it; here, the visibility is great, but I have to content myself with leaning against the car and craning my neck up. Of all the astronomical wonders I've seen, most of them have been here -- I saw a great lunar eclipse here, I saw Hale-Bopp here, and now I've seen a close Mars approach. When I was a kid, I always wondered how anyone ever made any visual sense out of the night sky -- I couldn't understand how some people could tell the difference between a star, a planet, and a satellite just by looking up. As I get older, though, I'm finding the differences easier to pick up on, and I'm learning my way around the constellations even without trying. If I'd spent my life looking up at night instead of watching TV, I'd probably have been this familiar with the night sky by the time I was ten years old -- but I'm happy enough to be getting there by thirty.

Oh, and Happy Halloween.
7:59 AM ::
Amy :: permalink
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