Laminate Lament

Peaceful weekends at the Buteshack are a thing of the past, now that the carpets in the holiday flat upstairs have been replaced with the dreaded scourge of tenement living: laminate flooring. Cheap, hygienic and easy to clean, it has the unfortunate side effect of being nerve-janglingly noisy for those underneath, even those who are slightly deaf. It would seem that the cookie bite ears can hear the gentle click-click-click of a canine claw on laminate just as well as the next person, although at least the ears did spare me from overhearing the embarrassing details of the neighbours’ heated critique of the spouse’s car parking habits through an open upstairs window, as I supped a G&T unnoticed on the garden bench below.

The traditional method of noise control in a tenement is to bash a broom handle against the ceiling as hard as you can, whilst shouting “Shut up…SHUT UP…SHUUUUUT UUUUUUP!” until those above get the message. It carries the benefit that you don’t have to leave the house to go upstairs in the middle of the night, and can even be done from the comfort of your bed, provided your broom handle is long enough. I have never used the broom handle method myself, though, and wouldn’t recommend it, since it carries the double risk of angering those above so much that they decide to make some more noise, combined with accidentally bringing your ceiling down at your own hands and being killed by a falling lump of plaster.

No, what is required here, is a bit of psychology. A bit of carpet is the ideal solution, but where this is not possible, I propose an intriguing new approach. I thought of it at six in the morning when the three kids upstairs were racing their dog from one end of the flat to the other. What if…what if one created the mysterious phenomenon of footsteps on the ceiling instead?

The clumpers overhead would freeze silently in their tracks as they tried to work out if those were really footsteps on the ceiling below. And here’s the good bit: they might even say to the kids “Shhhh! Quit jumping off the top of that wardrobe for a minute, and stop the dog barking, I’m trying to listen to something here”, a feat which could never be achieved through neighbourly diplomacy alone.


6 Responses to “Laminate Lament”

  1. 1 cyborginafield August 7, 2011 at 10:33 pm

    hahahahahahahahahah of fabby wish I could have seen those kids faces.

    • 2 moiradancer August 8, 2011 at 10:14 am

      Unfortunately I was forced to abandon my dastardly plan for fear of ending up in the Police On Patrol section of The Buteman newspaper.

      The headline would go something like: Hard of Hearing Woman Harasses Holiday Family With Wellies On The Ends Of Poles. I’d never be served at the Bute timber yard ever again.

  2. 5 Clara September 14, 2011 at 10:28 am

    See, what you really need is to start an argument yelling, make it sound really intriguing, then suddenly drop the volume to a very slightly raised voice. The neighbours will silence their children and push their ears against the floor to find out what on earth is going on. Has the dual advantage that you can re-activate it every time you want to just by yelling something short and incomprehensible, and your upstairs neighbours will assume the position, desperate to know if this is another instalment of the vicar’s affair or the “you know what” that you buried under the patio.

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