Tuesday, August 24, 2010

The Screamer

In an earlier entry, I mentioned that I had a next door neighbor whom I nicknamed The Screamer. The nickname came about when one day, as I was watching television, I heard him yelling bloody murder at someone in his apartment. To give you an idea of just how loud he is, let me describe the set-up at my complex: I live in a one bedroom, one bathroom apartment. It's just the right size for me and Ava: not too big, not too small, just right. A wall AC/heat unit is enough to cool and heat the entire thing. With me so far?

So one day a few months ago I was watching television with the AC unit going (which makes a bit of noise, but not too much). Over both the noise of the wall unit and my television, I heard sporadic cursing, more specifically, sporadic use of the word fuck: "FUCK!...FUCKING!...FUCK!..." It was faint, as he was in his apartment, but it was there. Because I'm naturally a nosy person (although I prefer to be labeled as "naturally curious"), I muted my TV and turned off my AC, tip-toed to the door that was closest to where the screaming seemed to be coming from, and listened. I still couldn't make out all of the tirade except for a few of those F-bombs, and I wondered who was on the receiving end of his rage--I concluded that he must have been screaming at someone on the phone, since I never heard anyone fight back.

This surprised me, because I had actually met The Screamer about a month prior, and he seemed hella cool. He's British, and he and his family had moved in earlier this year due to job relocation (whether it was for his job or his wife's job, I don't know). He said they'd be in Tampa for the next four years and really liked Davis Island and would probably stay in the neighborhood the entire time. He was actually the first one of my neighbors I'd met personally (everybody pretty much keeps to themselves in my complex) and I liked him immediately--he was friendly and easy-going. Hearing him scream like that was pretty alarming--like a Dr. Jekyll/Mr. Hyde switch--but I figured we all have a blow up every once in awhile and, other than telling a few friends because it was a little bizarre, didn't think much else of it.

Until the next time it happened, about a month and a half later. And then the time after that, which was a few weekends ago, which leads me to believe he has some anger issues. I mean, I get that we all blow up once in awhile--but three screamfests spaced months apart? That's not the occasional blow up; that calls for a trip to a counselor.

Sometimes, just for my own amusement, I like to make up back stories for people. I like to think The Screamer is really a stock broker and the reason for his tirades is because he lost a lot of money for a few of his major clients due to the incompetence of a person on his team--probably the new guy. My friend AA thinks that maybe he's part of the mob, and that he's threatening to put a hit on those that fail him. If he is part of the mob, then he's pretty sloppy, in my opinion--Don Corleone would never succumb to outright screaming. That's just not as classy or effective a solution as sneaking a couple of horse heads into a bed in the middle of the night.

One of these days, I really hope he takes his screaming outside, or at least to a room in his apartment that's not far away from mine. One of my guilty pleasures is watching other people's drama, and I don't think he'd disappoint. I just hope he doesn't give himself a heart attack first.

EDIT: I have since learned that The Screamer is actually Irish, so...my bad. I'm terrible in identifying accents, unless they're stereotypical.

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