Monday, June 21, 2010

Tips of dealing with a rowdy, party mad neighbour- Part I

So you have a noisy neighbour within your townhouse complex or apartment lot, who seems to take your bedtime as the perfect cue to engage in drugs, noisy sex and rock and roll with half the neighbourhood in attendance? Well you are in luck, your days of being tormented by drunken, raucous laughter , loud screams, thundering sound systems and trumpeting vuvuzelas in the wee hours of the morning, might soon be over. For a change, you might just open your windows on a sultry summer’s night and not have to breathe in whiffs of smoke from charred meat forgotten on the braai stand or smoke from the not so holy herb.

This is the first of a series of blog posts that will give you the do’s and don’ts in solving this problem. While your neighbour is a party animal from another planet, whose hedonistic tendencies are at odds with your more subtle social habits, it might not be wise for you to confront him or her face to face. In the same vein, it is unwise to call the police to enforce peace on your behalf. Such a confrontation might render it difficult for you to ask for favours from your neighbour in the future, for example borrowing his or her vacuum cleaner when yours decides to pack up again. You might someday expect your new laptop to be delivered to your place during your absence and therefore will need a friendly neighbour to receive it from the courier and keep it for you until your return. So confrontation will definitely be a good way of disadvantaging yourself, especially considering that the loud partying will probably carry on as an act of open defiance.

Another option that is not really an option is lodging a complaint with the estate managers or complex owners. Your neighbour will probably retaliate by making counter reports about the fact that you are illegally sharing your bachelor pad with your live in lover or that you are running a mini zoo in your lounge when the lease agreement clearly states that no pets are allowed. A formal complaint, therefore is tantamount to lodging a complaint about yourself as well.

You still remember from your psychology lectures many moons ago, that Pavlov served his dogs food with the accompanying sound of ringing bells. Eventually the dogs associated the ringing bells with food and would salivate at the mere sound of a bell, even with no food in sight. You think that this psychological experiment can be adapted to suit your neighbour. You reckon if you can brave waking up at one o’clock or two o’clock in the morning when the partying begins next door , you can find the outside electricity box and trip the power supply to your neighbour’s apartment. Slowly but surely you hope “neighbour dearest” will learn to associate wild odd hour partying and noise making with loss of electricity supply. It will then discourage the hosting of house parties during ungodly hours.

This plan might work but only until it is discovered that the power supply is caused by a tripping of the outside switch and that it only seems to affect that particular residence everytime. Your neighbour might then bribe the night watchman to stand guard by the power supply box till dawn when one by one, neighbour and friends will collapse on couches and beds and anything else that drunkards collapse on. Another risk associated with this option is getting busted while you are in the act of tripping the switch by one of your neighbour’s guests who hails from the roughest part of town. Having decided to go outside for some air, this guest might also decide to go and have a pee right next to the spot where you are engaged in power sabotage! You can imagine what will become of you then… (to be continued)

Within the next twenty four hours, we will examine more possibilities, please do not despair there are more where these came from and together we shall find a win-win situation for neighbour and you.

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