Here at VICE we make it a priority to report on how shitty the housing crisis is for young people.
Finding a decently-priced place in a building where no one recently got murdered is a chore. But what happens if you manage all that, only to discover that your neighbour will not stop playing “Wonderwall.” Hell is other people and you’ve just signed a lease to the dregs of the 9th circle.
That’s the predicament one Toronto woman found himself in, and naturally, instead of just having a conversation with his neighbours, he complained about the issue in Bunz, a popular local Facebook group.
“I recently moved into a new low rise apartment building and our downstairs neighbours have been playing Wonderwall by Oasis on guitar for hours for the past 2 days,” he wrote. “Last night they didn’t stop until 12:30 AM. Today, it started an hour ago with no sign of letting up. How do we file a noise complaint? What are the noise restrictions for times of day and when do they come into effect? Please help.”
We sympathize. “Wonderwall” is the kinda song that’s been so overplayed you can only stand to hear it like once a year—maybe on your annual ‘shrooms trip.
Step 1. Decide if you are Liam or Noel in this feud
How will you proceed in your path to vengeance and/or justice? Are you going to live your best life while calling everyone within earshot a “fookin twat” or are you the type of person who will put a scissors player in your band just because you know it will slowly rot the soul of your sworn enemy. Once, you’ve decided on your approach, stick with it and under no circumstances decide that maybe you should stop being such an asshole and try to work it out.
Step 2. Leave the neighbour a note voicing your displeasure
Liam: “The majority of solo stars are cunts. The ones that split bands up because they need their egos fuckin' stroked are the biggest cunts. If someone said to me, 'OK, get Oasis back or go solo?' I'd get Oasis back. There's not enough bands out there. There's far too many fuckin' solo stars. It's shit. This is the last fuckin' roll of the dice for me. For me to go and get another band back together it'd only be compared to Oasis anyway, so what's the fuckin' point?”
Noel: "I don't like workaholics. Don't fucking trust them. Why are they working? I don't trust busy cunts. That's how wars start: busy fuckers."
Step 3: Play Blur on repeat
Liam: “Song 2”
Step 4. Play your solo shit
Noel: “Ballad Of The Mighty I”
Step 5. Enlist the help of ‘The Man’
Liam: Call the cops: Well, this is it. You’ve tried nothing, and you’re all out of options. The only thing left is to bring in the big guns: municipal law enforcement. The city is stretched thin trying to keep the social fabric from unraveling by policing the fuck out of non-violent drug offenders but you need the long arm of the law to slap your neighbours down over some extremely petty shit, because that’s why you pay taxes. Unfortunately, all the cops can legally do is tell your neighbours to keep it down and possibly out you as a 90s narc, which would be a brutal personal humiliation and also escalate the situation where they start playing “Wonderwall” on an electric-acoustic guitar and utterly destroy your brain. Do not summon the blue devil lightly.
Noel: Call the landlord: Ah, the landlord. Humanity’s oldest foe. A wonderful servant but a terrible master—especially in an apartment complex. If you’re lucky, the building manager is a real person and not a faceless real estate holding group, so you can pass along your tip directly instead of waiting several weeks for a reply to that complaint form you fill out by which time the problem has probably disappeared or you have moved. They can definitely bring the hammer down on the noise much harder than the cops. But landlords are also like vampires, in that if you invite them over to your place there is no guarantee they won’t look around inside your apartment and eat you and/or keep your damage deposit because of that weird spot on the carpet that you’re pretty sure was there when you moved in but you can’t really prove it so now whenever you do move because of your inability to tolerate the wonderful human mosaic of a big city, you will have to come up with a new security deposit instead of endlessly kicking the same one forward from like 2012 and that’s a fuckin bummer dude, let me tell you.
Step 6. Call your mum, Peggy Gallagher
Liam: "Sorry for being such a twat, mum, but can you help me with this problem?"
Noel: "Sorry for being such a wanker, mum, but can you help me with this problem?"
Step 7. Start subtweeting terrible one-liners
Irritate not just Bunz with your inability to handle a relatively benign issue like an adult, but Twitter as well.
Liam: “Maybe I should be thankful that he's not playing it on a SUPERSONIC level. LG."
Noel: “Hey, mate. I need a little time to wake up, wake up.”
Step 8. Enlist the help of the Press
Now shit is truly getting real. If the landlord, law enforcement, Bunz trading zone, subtweets and calls to mum, can’t solve it, there’s only one solution: take your snipes to the press. Some local paper—presuming there’s one left—will let you take this spat public and if you are lucky, take a picture of you with your arms crossed looking very, very angry about your neighbour playing
"Wonderwall" way too loud and too often!
Liam: Call Noisey.
Noel: Call the NME.
Final Step: Reconcile with the neighbour
You tried so hard, and got so far, but in the end it doesn’t even matter. You know, this is a crazy mixed up world and we’re all just trying to get by as best we can. Sometimes that’s posting passive-aggressive comments on a popular Toronto-area Facebook group; sometimes it’s strumming Oasis to yourself, constantly, all the hours of the day and night. Each one of us walks a lonely road to the same end and it’s the journey that makes all the difference. So maybe you can just get used to hearing “Wonderwall”, muffled through your floor, forever. It’s not so bad, you know. It’s a beautiful song, really, in and of itself, it’s just been totally destroyed by overexposure and its awful afterlife as the mating call of the Basic Guitar Bro. Eventually you will get used to it, and soon its soaring chorus will lull you to sleep every night, soundtrack all your romantic nights in, become an inside joke between you and your friends to be retold endlessly until it is immortalized forever in your best man’s wedding speech.
And then one day the music will stop, because your neighbours have moved on with their lives. You will be lost, only now understanding the value of this surreal moment in your life after it has slipped through your fingers like the bittersweet memories of your faded youth. The fire in your heart dwindles and goes out as you finally get the punchline of your own cosmic joke. You could have made beautiful music together.