A Decibel Conundrum

So, I was peacefully lolling around in bed at an indecent hour this morning, sleeping off a late night frenzied bout of reading, when my sleep was profoundly disturbed, and I was jolted awake. Normally, my sleep is disturbed by one of the following: a cat jumping on me, the sudden smell of poop followed by furtive litterbox scratchings, my father knocking on the door, the incredibly loud and never ending house construction, or my insanely loud neighbor tromping up his stairs, idling his truck three feet away from my bed, or blaring nonsense into his phone. Oh, or screaming children, which appear to surround me on all sides. Why am I not living in the woods again?

This morning, however, it was a different sort of thing that woke me up, a shuddering, jouncing, windows rattling in their frames moment of utter disorientation. It felt sort of like an earthquake, but not quite right, and the cats had their ears laid back but they were holding fast on the bed, which is not earthquake behavior. As my consciousness flooded in, I realized that I had literally been shaken awake, but not by natural means. Instead, someone had their car speakers turned up to excruciating volume, and they were driving down the street. The shaking continued, actually, for several blocks.

Now, I like to listen to the music a little loud, myself. But this was…out of control. I don’t actually understand how someone could be a passenger in that car without their ears exploding. It was painful for me and I was separated, at one point, by multiple buildings. I actually woke up when they passed directly behind my bed, and for a heartstopping (literally) moment when I was waking up I thought I was dying. That was the only rational explanation my sleep deprived brain had for what my body was experiencing, because the bass was literally so high that it caused my heart to stop beating.

Now, I am fairly certain that noise over a certain decibel level is actually generally prohibited in town, and especially in vehicles. Loud music, after all, is really distracting (see My First Traffic Infraction for details). So, I am assured that this person would probably be cited for driving with their speakers turned up that high, were they ever to be caught by a cop.

However, I suspect that they turn their music down when they are in more cop-trafficked parts of town, for precisely that reason. Much to my chagrin, I also suspect that this person lives on my block, because this isn’t the first time that I have experienced this problem.

This, then, begs the question of what I want to do about it. One part of me is highly tempted to charge out in my bathrobe and note down their license plate the next time this happens. (I say “charge out in my bathrobe” because this person always seems to go by when I am sleeping or just getting out of the shower.) I suppose I could call the non-emergency line at the cop shop and report them, in the hopes that the cops will be able to nab them. I do, however, feel slightly silly calling the cops about it, especially if they have already received complaints. The DMV? You can report reckless driving to the DMV, right, so why not attempted manslaughter by bass? Ah, such just desserts if this person experienced the long arm of the DMV in the form of a license revocation letter.

I am also tempted to just charge out in my bathrobe and look menacing, but unfortunately when you are five feet tall on a good day and plump every day, it’s sort of hard to look menacing. Like many curvaceous ladies, my menacing stance is often perceived as amusing, which actually serves to make me even more furious. Let this be a lesson to you who would laugh at the short and fat: there is nothing angrier than a short, fat girl who is being laughed at because she is angry. Don’t go there unless you aren’t particularly fond of your limbs.

My other alternative is a bit more…Slytherin. This alternative involves stealthily taking note of said vehicle, and then finding out where it parks and cutting the speaker cables. Ultimately much more satisfying, and probably much more effective.

What do you think? Sometimes I feel like I am turning into an old person. I can’t wait to have a lawn to tell kids to stay off of!