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Block Party

Our girl had her best sleep in a long while last night, but we sure didn’t. A bunch of guys decided to have a party in front of the abandoned house across the street, starting around 1:00 AM. They were drinking beer, listening to corridos, and generally laughing and hollering and carrying on. They were quite loud, and the music was louder. Somehow I slept through a couple hours of this. Or rather, I was half asleep, vaguely aware of the noise but still more or less zonked. Xy on the other had was suffering through a migraine and unable to sleep. Debra came out and asked the guys to quiet down, but they just laughed at her. Around 3:00 AM I woke up fully to make Persephone a bottle and took stock of the situation. Even with our windows closed (a shame on such a nice night) the noise level in our bedroom was way too high.

So I called the cops. Just as I did so, the party seemed to break up, so I told them to forget about it. Yet over the next hour the party reformed and broke up and reformed yet again. What the hell was happening out there? It was less loud now, but still enough to keep me awake. And then the final insult: the sound of breaking glass, as beer bottles were chucked against the steps of the abandoned house. How incredibly disrespectful. We’ve got more kids playing in our neighborhood than ever — and you’re busting bottles?

Broken Bottle [detail]

Thus I ended up calling the cops again, around 4:00 AM. I told them if a cruiser were just to pass by and flash its lights, that would probably be sufficient to break the party up for good. I don’t know if they actually came or not. I was too busy getting back to sleep.

One thing I want to make clear. I don’t relish calling NOPD on my neighbors. (I’m assuming these guys live nearby.) In fact, I hate it. I’d rather deal with people directly. But let’s be real. Even if I had the balls to go out in the middle of the night and confront a group of drunken guys on the street, the fact remains that we don’t even speak the same language, so I don’t really think we’d have a meeting of the minds.

If I could directly address these guys, here’s what I would have said: “As much as I hate calling the cops, you should hate it even more, because you never know what you’re going to get. The situation could get very ugly and out of hand, and people could get seriously hurt. But as far as I’m concerned you’re leaving me no other option, except suffering in silence, and that’s something I won’t do. I don’t mind people drinking beer on the street in the middle of the night. I really don’t — so long as you’re not bothering me. But if you are going to be so blatantly disrespectful to the neighborhood, then you’ve sacrificed any such tolerance on the altar of your own stupidity, and frankly I no longer care if you get chewed up by the prison-industrial complex. So how about you pipe the fuck down or go home?”

We love our little corner of Mid-City. We were just remarking yesterday afternoon how seeing black and white and Latino kids playing together was very sweet. But still, my only regret is not calling the cops earlier.

Strangely enough I’m feeling chipper today despite the lack of a good night’s rest. I think I’m on the upswing from whatever virus I was battling. Xy on the other hand went to school puking, and came home early. I hope she feels better soon.

Published inNeighborsPix

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