Zombie Family

We had a few nights of blissful reprieve from the middle-aged fraternity party next door. Blissful, this whole notion of sleeping through the night (or, at least, in our case, only being awoken by our sleepwalking children — Will falling out of bed or Kate bonking herself against the crib as she throws herself around).

Then, Wednesday night (or, really, Thursday morning), we — as in Paul, Kate, and I… followed quickly by Will — woke up to the sound of loud music, drums, microphone, and amplified singing at 2:00am. Yes, you read that right. Band practice at 2a.m. — 6 feet from your sleeping neighbors. To fill out the picture, he had been playing loud music most (maybe every) night until about 10:30-11 (Wednesday night included) — and we were okay with it. We’re not being stringent to the law, we’re being pretty darn flexible (all things considered) and are just asking for the slightest bit of consideration during OBVIOUS sleep hours. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a serious pain when it’s cranked up during nap-time, but noise can also be nice and we can live with it every once in awhile. But daily? And at wee hours of the morning?!?!? How is this reasonable?

So we called the dispatch, who happened to have taken our calls before. Again, she heard the music over the phone and heartedly commiserated with us. The police came around 3am. This time, neighbor & co. (there were guests) answered the door, delivered a heated discussion, and (as we are to understand it from the police) rebuked: “my 5-year old sleeps through it.” An interesting observation, but the fact is that the said 5-year old is 40+ feet away from the instruments and amplifiers, through several walls and a floor, whereas we are at best 6-8 feet away, through one poorly insulated wall and another completely uninsulated wall. (There maybe other questions there, too, but I am trying very hard to not be incinerary. We really want to end this amicably.)

The lack of sleep, stress over the situation, and almost daily assaults have made us Zombie people. I’m WAY behind. We’ve stopped morning walks for want of more sleep, the kids are cranky (and I’m concerned their health defenses are wearing down and they will catch one of the bugs flying around — making them miss one of the fantastic events coming up), and we feel completely beat up. Maybe being Zombified is in with it being a few weeks to Halloween and all, but we are totally over it.

For the purposes of documentation, this is the local law:

It shall be unlawful between the hours of 9:00 p.m. Sunday through Thursday and 10:00 a.m. on the subsequent morning or between the hours of 10:30 p.m. on a Friday or Saturday and 10:00 a.m. the subsequent morning to operate or play in a dwelling occupying a parcel or lot of land or to operate or play anywhere on a parcel or lot of land contiguous or adjacent to another parcel or lot of land occupied by a neighboring dwelling any radio, television, phonograph, loudspeaker, sound-ampli-fication equipment orsimilar device which produces or reproduces sound in such a manner as to be plainly audible at a distance of one foot from any exterior wall of the neighboring dwelling or at a distance beyond the boundary between the parcels or lots, whichever is the lesser distance from the point where the sound is produced or reproduced. (emphasis added)

The fact that we can hear music (drums, amplifier, microphone… hello!?) INSIDE our house, across our house, and from the street in front of our house makes it pretty clear there are serious noise violations occurring. So I don’t think we’re being out of bounds here.

Support, suggestions, and ideas are appreciated. As is caffeine.