Friday, December 17, 2010

I Hear You When I'm Sleeping
December Photo Project Day #17

UNICEF Baccarat crystal snowflake
UNICEF Baccarat Crystal Snowflake, 5th Ave & 57th Street

My upstairs neighbor was vacuuming at midnight last night.  And then again at 1am. If an upstairs neighbor has to have a late-night cleaning habit, I think I'd prefer if it were dusting, or silver-polishing, or something.

Still, the vacuuming was preferable to his commotion a few weeks ago, when he woke me up in the middle of the night by screaming f-bombs over and over.  I mean, really, over and over and over.  I don't know that I've ever heard that many f-bombs strung together, not even in a Die Hard movie.

When he was finally done venting verbally, I heard an odd rustling sound.  And then - white flurries outside my window.  Sadly it was not snow, but rather, falling papers.  He cleaned house by dumping reams of paper out his window and into the air shaft that separates our building from the neighboring one.  Weird, and not a little environmentally irresponsible.

I think my neighbor is a student, and I wonder if maybe some sort of end-of-semester psychosis is setting in?  I vaguely remember what that was like - to be in finals mode, a ball of stress, barely sleeping, subsisting largely on pints of Ben & Jerry's Low-Fat Frozen Yogurt and instant mashed potatoes (or was that just me?).

In a situation like that, you slowly lose your grip on what constitutes normal behavior. And vacuuming at midnight starts to seem like an excellent idea - both because you probably haven't vacuumed all semester so you're overdue, plus you're desperately seeking excuses to delay writing that history thesis.  Win-win.

Except for your downstairs neighbor, who loses a little when her sleep is disrupted by your psychosis.  But that's ok, little student; your downstairs neighbor remembers how final exams can be crazy-making.  And she didn't move to the city for peace and quiet, anyways.

So clean on.

(But try to recycle.)

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