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Let's Panic: The Book!

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How to Endure and Possibly Triumph Over the Adorable Tyrant
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Written by Alice Bradley and Eden Kennedy

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What our upstairs neighbor might be doing

It's not easy, having your feet removed and replaced with anvils. But darn it, I'm going to find a way to get by. Now to practice my walking. No—JUMPING. That's the spirit, me!

If only the clog dancing studio hadn't burned to the ground. I suppose we'll have to use my living room. My neighbors will understand once they find out how much money our performance will raise for the third-world orphans.


This new therapist wants me to do trust falls all by myself, because if I can't trust myself, he says, who can I trust? He's the expert, I guess. I wish I could at least do them on my mattress. Or some pillows. Ow.


You know, I think I'll hammer some sound-absorbing materials to my floors. So that I don't bother anyone else in the building. I know some people would say, wait until morning, get some rest. But there's no rest for the thoughtful. I'll hammer until 3 a.m. if I have to. Just hammer and hammer.

Reader Comments (99)

During our apartment days, we lived beneath a single, older woman who played the piano and babysat her basketball-dribbling grandson most evenings. If I didn't know any better, I'd think she was trying to drive us out.
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSpandrel Studios
Huh Ami. That was kind of funny, kind of not.

Hey - maybe it's my husband getting ready for work at 5:30 am. Or my husband very quietly getting up in the middle of the night for a super quiet drink of water. Or that's where early morning garbage men go to practice their trade...
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterMignon
JR stole my comment.

It could be worse, a friend of mine had a guy above her who used to fight with his girfriend all the time in between the attacks from the bookcase. Constant screaming and cursing. The worst part of the whole thing? After years of listening to this crap, he moved out the same weekend she did. She was ticked.
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDM
My college boyfriend's apartment had upstairs neighbors who consistently sounded like they must be stomping grapes to make dirty college boy foot wine. We went up there one night and found out that no, they just wrestle a lot. Which, yea, maybe I didn't need to know these four 20-ish boys spent soooo much time wrestling each other. I wonder where they kept their singlets.

In other words, I feel your pain.
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJess
anvils for feet. hee hee. hee.

we used to wonder if the couple above us had a dwarf tossing league that revved up once the sun went down.
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterislaygirl
Maybe they're testing the durability of bowling balls when dropped at home.
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterCourtney
I don't live in an apartment, but there is a spot in the neighbour's backyard, closest to my bedroom, that is a portal to noise hell.

First, it was country music played loudly while gardening.

Then they installed a very loud garden fountain that sounded like a bathtub running. The first time I noticed it, it was the middle of the night and I ran, half asleep, for my bathroom convinced one of the kids had left the tap running.

The next family put a trampoline where the fountain had been. Shrieking children and squeaky springs and lots of garbage thrown over the fence.

Now they replaced the trampoline with a hot tub. They're loud enough when they talk but when they talk over the sound of the water jets, I can actually hear every. word. they. say. And they have the most inane conversations I have ever been forced to overhear. And the icing on the cake? The heater or filter or some hot tub maintenance thingy sounds like a giant refrigerator running on the other side of my bedroom wall. All night long.

Luckily, they haven't had loud sex in it. Yet.

March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDawn
It's really annoying to hear those loud noise from our upstairs neighbor especially at night. One good thing is that we have a very, very nice neighborhood and we have addressed the problem to them properly. That way, they have been very cautious.
Makes me think of the newly divorced musician who moved in above us when I was newly pregnant. He had a thing for hurtling amplifiers across the room at 3 in the morning.
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterZip n Tizzy

Reminds me of this:
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterSandra
dufflepods. snort. i hope they're still invisible. yeah, our upstairs neighbors are meatchoppers. NOCTURNAL meat choppers. and no, i'm not kidding. and i killed them. the end.
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommentertifRN
I no longer feel crazy for wanting to sneak into my neighbors house and snap all the heels of her Manolo's
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJoy
My heart is now heavy not only for the prosciutto bagels on 3rd Ave in Bay Ridge, but living across the street from the infamous 93rd street crazies, the wacko dog upstairs who probably weighed only 15 lbs, but I swear wore a tread in the hallway above our heads, and heaving a stroller up and down the stairs to get in and out of the house. We left Brooklyn last May and miss city life terribly. I haven't had a bagel since...glad to have found your blog for a little bit of city life and east coast love.
March 10, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterAlison Huberty
my mum always taught me that 2 wrongs dont make a right...... but i will say this;as a mother of 2 young children, there can be nothing more grating than a screaming child that continues their tantrum for extended periods of time. Trumps all other annoying sounds...... not that i agree with 2 wrong making a right, and all that :)

March 11, 2009 | Unregistered
It would be so amazingly awesome if your neighbor read your blog :P
March 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDidi
Oh. dear. That bookcase incident sounds serious. They're Loud Walkers. And didn't you mention Loud Talkers in the hallway? I'm sorry you're surrounded by Louders. But then, you produce such brilliant pieces when these things happen...
March 11, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterhi kooky
So THAT'S what happened to my upstairs neighbors and their two wrestling elephants! They moved from Houston to Brooklyn! Tell them hi! from me!
March 11, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterkkelly
When my daughter was about two years old, the neighbor invited us upstairs. She looked around his apartment eagerly, then her face fell. "Where are the horses?" she hissed in disappointment.

All those times we'd complained about the noise, she thought there really were horses up there. Nope, just two heavy-footed girls.
March 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDaisy
My upstairs neighbor, Kyle, is made of marble, or tungsten, or some other really heavy, solid material. I like to play "Kyle or an Earthquake." Because once time it sounded and felt just like Kyle doing his usual running back and forth across his bedroom floor but when I watched the news later that night I found out it was, in fact, an earthquake.
March 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterRachel
March 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJennifer
so so funny. for me, anyway.
March 11, 2009 | Unregistered Commenterjessica
Now I know where my husband goes when he claims he's working overnight. The man has the heaviest clompy stompy feet in the world, even in SOCKS. I kid you not, he can wake our child just walking on carpeted floor in stockinged feet in a nonadjacent room.

But hey, as long as it pays...
March 11, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterEffective Nancy
Welcome back to life in the city! At least you don't have crickets at all hours of the night. :)
March 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterElaine at Lipstickdaily
I would think you were exaggerating, but I live in the city and I know you are totally NOT exaggerating!! It's sad.

The perils of moving back to the city...
March 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterDaphne
trust falls part was my fave. Thanks for the much-needed laughs today!
March 12, 2009 | Unregistered CommenterJenny

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