Revenge is best served in clogs.

24 Oct

I haven’t posted about my noisy upstairs neighbor for a while, not only because I didn’t have much fodder for a post, but also because I didn’t want to jinx things by telling you how good he’s been.

Oh, don’t get me wrong — I’d never mistake his unit for vacant. But he’s been pretty good about limiting his walk-abouts to more normal hours, quieting down by 11pm and not starting up (officially) until around 6am most day — unless it’s the weekend, in which case he’s pretty good until around 7am.

That’s a vast improvement over his previous schedule (during which I could only bank on silence from 1am – 4am each day).

This weekend my parents were visiting from Michigan. I always get a bit tense when I have guests, hoping Michael remains on good behavior so everyone can get a good night’s sleep. Before going to bed the first night, my mom asked how the noise situation had been lately.

“Great,” I told her. “It’s much better than it was. I can actually live with the pattern we’re in now.”

“That’s great,” she responded. “You know what you should do? Take him a bottle of wine or something and make a big deal out of how good he is – a little positive reinforcement.”

I nodded thinking, “No thanks — he’s not THAT good.”

Fast forward to the next morning. I was brewing coffee when my mom emerged from the bedroom around 8am, which is early for her vacation schedule. “Sleep well?” I asked.

“Until the last hour,” she commented. “Ever since Michael got up, I’ve been hearing him.”

“Well, at least it started around 7am,” I said. “That’s at least reasonable.”

The look on Mom’s face told me she didn’t find 7am reasonable. “You know what you should do?” she asked, oddly reminiscent of the previous evening’s conversation. Bracing for another lesson in positive reinforcement, I was halfway through an eye roll when she said, “Make friends with the people who live above him. Then you can go up there and stomp around to pay him back.”

There we go. Now that’s the kind of advice I expect from someone who once gift wrapped dog turds for a guy who let his dog crap in her yard. In fact, I won’t be surprised if the next time they visit, she brings along a pair of shoes that look like this:

32 Responses to “Revenge is best served in clogs.”

  1. Nigel Windsor October 24, 2011 at 9:45 pm #

    Your mom sounds awesome. The World would be a much beter place with more mother’s like yours!

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:49 pm #

      She is the Original Honey Badger.

  2. thesinglecell October 24, 2011 at 10:08 pm #

    I like the way your mother thinks. Does she have any advice to deal with a baby who cries a lot downstairs and his parents, who play lullaby music entirely too loudly at all hours of day and night?

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:50 pm #

      I’ll have to ask, but I suspect she would advise baking brownies (and formula) with ground Benadryl in them.

  3. An Observant Mind October 25, 2011 at 12:14 am #

    OMG I love your mum! She’s brilliant! Have you ever thought of suggesting she run for congress? I bet she could think of some bad-ass payback for corporate America!

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:51 pm #

      She believes in paddling and has no time for grandstanding. I’m pretty sure Congress would get shit done with her in a seat.

  4. Lorna's Voice October 25, 2011 at 6:46 am #

    I’ve always been a fan of positive reinforcement, but that doesn’t work for all people. Your mother is a wise woman. Really, she wrapped up dog turds? She’s quite serious in the “making a point” department! 😉

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:53 pm #

      If only I had recorded the wild cackle as she selected the gift wrap… it would give you chills of terror.

  5. John October 25, 2011 at 8:26 am #

    Years ago we lived in a duplex type deal. We liked to play music, but I never thought it was loud enough to bother anyone else. Then new neighbors moved next door. From day one they would pound on the wall whenever the music was on, even though it was low. They pounded on the wall when the television was on, which was at a low volume. We’d see them coming and going and they would never say a word. Their scowl said it all. After a couple of weeks when the banging on the wall got to be too much I suggested we go over and properly introduced ourselves. We knocked on the door and you could tell by their reaction we were the last people they expected. We politely said we just wanted to say introduce ourselves and say hi. They invited us in and it was pretty clear they were on edge. We never said a word about the wall banging. They never said a word about the music or television. After a few minutes they seemed to relax. By the time we left they were all smiles and we never heard another bang on the wall, even if the music got to be a bit loud.

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:54 pm #

      It’s much harder to hate people once you know them, isn’t it? Hating the IDEA of a person? Easy. Hating a real person? Much more difficult. Know they neighbors?

      • John October 27, 2011 at 10:27 am #

        I find the it’s a fine way to diffuse potential bad situations!

  6. skippingstones October 25, 2011 at 8:50 am #

    Your mom gift wrapped dog turds. That is awesome.

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:54 pm #

      The irony? She doesn’t even gift wrap Christmas presents.

  7. dribblingpensioner October 25, 2011 at 5:04 pm #

    Thats a good idea your mum had.

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:54 pm #

      She should start a company, no?

  8. Miss Demure Restraint October 26, 2011 at 9:21 am #

    Mom is a hoot. I don’t think I’d want to piss her off.

    Funny story, I liked it.

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:56 pm #

      No. I don’t want to piss her off, and I’m her offspring.

  9. WayWordBound October 26, 2011 at 12:55 pm #

    HA! This is hilarious, I used to have the same problem when I lived in an apartment. I love that your mom gave you that advice, priceless!

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:57 pm #

      Well, our elders ARE wise, right?

  10. kitkatlikereflexes October 26, 2011 at 1:33 pm #

    HAHA! Your posts are cracking me up!

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:58 pm #

      Thanks! Sadly, they’re true.

  11. Tin Roof Press October 26, 2011 at 2:14 pm #

    hahahaha. What great and yet simultaneously terrible advice.

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:58 pm #

      Depends how it plays out, right? Stay tuned…

  12. Laura Bruzzese October 26, 2011 at 4:40 pm #

    I like your blog! Funny posts. I tried to find an About page but *alas* could not. Anyway, when I read the tag line at the top I couldn’t help but take a peek. Well done!

    • pithypants October 26, 2011 at 11:59 pm #

      Thanks. No About — mainly because I work with a lot of high profile companies who – if they knew I was blogging – might not be so open with me. Anonymity is the best policy, no?

  13. monty October 27, 2011 at 12:04 am #

    As I listen to my own upstairs neighbors compete in what can only be a bowling-ball-dropping-contest, I can absolutely sympathize.

  14. cruisenomad October 27, 2011 at 5:39 am #

    I know sometimes I feel like stomping around in other peoples lives but remeber thats only once in a while, I would rather just enjoy my life and have a little fun yhan use anger to suck away my life.

    anyway good story

    Kudos to you

    • cruisenomad October 27, 2011 at 5:40 am #

      Sorry about the spelling Im just impulsive sometimes.

  15. silence4you October 27, 2011 at 6:04 am #

    Howdy! This especially shows that silence can be very precious…

  16. ann October 27, 2011 at 9:07 am #

    Go ahead, Mom! What a hoot!

  17. Laura4NYC October 27, 2011 at 1:38 pm #

    This is pretty hilarious! Unfortunately, I can relate from the other side. My two roommates are the ones stomping around and our neighbors have already complained several times but to no avail. O well, guess I am lucky I live on the same level they do and not below!

  18. kathleenmae October 29, 2011 at 6:46 pm #

    This is a great blog! Very humourous! Your mum is a good thinker, that would have really got to your neighbour. Did you end up taking your mum’s advice?

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