Getting a good night's sleep
It was almost twelve on Saturday night and there I was, lying limbs asprawl in my king-size bed, trying to appreciate the soft embrace of my scarlet red satin sheets. It had been an uneventful night with the simple pleasures: leather armchair, a warm fire, a crystal tumbler full of dry vermouth and a good book of poetry. In other words, the perfect evening. But my night had not yet finished, and its nadir was coming as swiftly and unstoppably as a runaway train. A few minutes after midnight, my flatmates and several guests (a flat is what they call a “house” or “apartment” in New Zealand; this is of very little importance) entered noisily, at which point they proceeded to engage in a series of increasingly voluminous parlour games.
First on the agenda was a game called “laugh uproariously every time the clock tells us five seconds have passed.” Though I did not know who, exactly, the guests were, I could tell that they were veterans at this game, as their mellifluous guffaws sounded with a practised expertise. Next, they moved on to a game called “slam every door in the house as if I am trying to crack a walnut between frame and door.” But after a few slams it was decided that this game was not very fun and they moved on to a new one. The final game, “drop pots and pans from vertiginous heights onto hard surfaces,” was really fun, apparently, because they did it until I fell into a deep rage coma.
Why am I telling you this? Partly because I am a complainer. But also because I think it presents a good opportunity to talk about problem solving. This experience was not unique to New Zealand; believe it or not friends, I have also had trouble falling asleep back at Colby due to late night noisiness. And I’m sure I’m not alone. We’ve all been there, lying in bed trying to sleep while some inconsiderate gentleman or lady practices his or her tuba right outside your window. Indeed, it seems that there is a large portion of the student body (I will call them “freshmen” for lack of a better term) who, every weekend without fail, decide to hold drunken yelling festivals once darkness falls.
It is imperative that we not accept our fate, however. This brings me to my point: problem solving. Now, obviously the number one best choice for dealing with late night problems is apathy. Although it may seem unwise, ignoring loud noises is often most effective. Though it may seem like the loud yelling outside your window will go on forever, it will more than likely be over within 45 minutes or so. Another good option, one that I did not take last Saturday night, is to react violently. Some might argue that you should try to reason with the noisy rascals, but that doesn’t work. More likely it will result in a can of Keystone Light (the choice beverage for such boisterous buffoons) being thrown at your skull. Your choice.
Instead, next time you’re getting a little annoyed, calmly put on your bathrobe, pick up a good Louisville Slugger baseball bat, and run outside swinging it wildly and screaming with reckless abandon.