The Sounds of Love :
Everyone hates addressing “the elephant in the room”. The elephant in my room was the loud creaking, shaking and obnoxious moaning above it. As a graduate of biology, I understand the importance of “getting off”. What I failed to understand is why the tenant living above my apartment had to “party hard” for what seemed to be every waking second of the night hours. The tenant and his wife never used to have sex this frequently, trust me with my cardboard ceiling I could hear spiders having a fun time. I would hear the creaking and moaning once every few weeks. But for reasons unknown, it suddenly turned to a love riot above me.
I met the tenant’s wife once. She was quiet and left me with the impression she kept to herself. She was everything I wanted to see in a woman: soft spoken, red haired, sculpted body. It pained me to see a gold ring on her finger. I would lie in my bed at night looking forward to hearing her moans and groans, I don’t enjoy admitting feelings for another man’s wife but we’re all human. I enjoyed telling myself she was becoming tired of her husband. She had not been moaning and groaning very much. I imagined I would too if a once a week thing became a “once every few hours thing”. It hadn’t had any effect on her husband though. I was able to hear his “sounds” louder than I could hear my own thoughts.
It was 4:21 A.M. I could hear the husband starting his engines. A part of me felt jealous that he was with such a beautiful woman. I would have liked to say that his sounds bothered me, but I would have been lying. What bothered me most were constant reminders of being single, and every moment of the night being reminded of what I was missing out on. I thought to myself “I have to put an end to this”. It was time for me to confront the elephant in the room.
I went up the stairs and knocked on his door. I must admit I expected to hear swearing and fuming. But the husband came to the door and calmly asked, “Is there a problem?” His face was plagued with an almost concerned look. There on the couch I could see his wife in a blanket, only her bright red hair showing. I felt so embarrassed; I didn’t know what to say. I had obviously humiliated this couple. “Why couldn’t I have just gone to bed a jealous bitter jerk?” I asked myself.
As I stared eye to eye with the tenant I noticed a look of sharp fear, a far cry from the anticipated embarrassment. At least five seconds of staring passed before I finally stomached the courage and said with a lop-sided grin, “It’s a little late at night for all this excitement, I’m sorry but I have to get up for work in two hours and am having trouble sleeping”. “My wife and I will keep it quiet”, the tenant abruptly assured. Before I could say “Have a good night” the tenant slammed the door in my face. The situation absurd as it may have been left me with an eerie chill in my spine. As a graduate of biology I noticed the man had a strange body odor, an odor that doesn’t occur on any animal unless…? What if the tenant was having an affair with his wife? Maybe they were divorced. I hadn’t seen his wife leave the room at all recently. That would explain a lot, except I’ve never seen another woman with hair that bright red.
Trying to forget my encounter I walked back into my room and fell asleep. The next morning I called my landlord and requested I be moved to a unit across the street. “Is there a problem? If so you should have notified me. May I ask what the problem is?” the landlord asked. His voice left an implication I was going to have to “deal with it”. Feeling slightly ashamed I finally told him “The tenant above my room has recently gotten into the habit of having sex, sorry for citing a cliché, but ‘ALL NIGHT LONG’. This has been cutting my sleep time in half and I have to wake up early in the mor…” “Jesus Christ, he’s already found another one? That was fast!” The landlord exclaimed. Confused I felt it an obligation to ask “Found another what? I went upstairs and asked him to keep the noise level down and saw his wife on the couch so I’m not sure what you mean by another one.”
The landlord had hung up on me mid-sentence. I tried to call back but got a busy signal. I wasn’t sure what to make of the situation. My landlord was acting funky. He usually behaved much more professionally than this. Suddenly I realized I was running late for work, so any questions I had for the landlord were put on hold.
When I got back to the apartment after work there were three police cars outside the complex. Assuming it was just a routine call I attempted to walk back inside only to realize a large African American policeman walking very swiftly my direction. I stopped and when he approached me he asked “Are you the occupant of room number 665?” I stood there and once again in my confused state answered “Umm, yes?” The officer nodded and asked “Can you explain to me your recent encounter with the man above your room?”
Memory clouded, I was finally able to retrieve the one true face to face encounter the man and I had ever exchanged and vehemently said “The only encounter he and I have ever had was when I went up and asked him and his wife to keep the noise level down we only spoke for 30 seconds. I called the landlord and complained about the noises I had requested to be moved to another room in the complex.”
The officer looked me in the eyes took a deep breath and said in an almost forced tone “Sir your landlord contacted us immediately after your complaint, he said you had seen the man’s wife.”
“Yes, I did. She was hiding underneath blankets, but I recognized some of the hair sticking out as hers.”
The police officer turned away from my face and muttered, “His wife died of a brain aneurysm, she was laid to rest one week ago.”