I go to bed, the man in the flat above, has a wooden floor without carpet, through which every foot step and every (always long) chair scrape is as clear as day. The way he walks around his flat I imagine he wears boots with lead weights in them. There he goes again, dropping a three pin power plug and cable on the floor, a favourite trick. He likes to let everyone know that he's tired too with a long really loud semi-ironic yawn. The other month he came in at three am in the morning, banging around louder than usual. It sounded like he was pushing a chest of drawers across the floor. I shouted "Do you mind? Some of us are trying to sleep down here!"
I know it could be a lot worse, and thankfully it's generally quiet, but if only he had more Ninja aspirations.
I go to work, I work in the downstairs office. Same story. Boots made of lead. Ceiling shaking. At least I'm not trying to relax and sleep. Just trying to relax to concentrate. At work I'm really making progess in my ability to completely blot out everything around me. Apart from when a sales person leaps out of their office chair because they've made a sale.
Still, it's preferable to the constant drone of motors pumping oil around injection moulding machines that used to, in some cases, literally reverberate inside my skull.
Finally, I get home, relax in front of the computer in the vain hope whatever I did the night before might have got some sort of response, or I look to see what cycling stuff I should buy next, or I seach around the internet for technical clues as to how to get my computer to do that thing I want it to do... when the children in the flat above start running round, bouncing balls on the floor.
Sometimes under such circumstances, if there's no one else home with me, I might be reminded that I haven't listened to much music for a while. A lot of people might consider my taste in music to be rather poor. I find it difficult to answer the question 'what music do you like?' It's such a complex question. The answer is lots of different music I guess, but my taste is fairly limited. I don't really know other than for the most part it's easier and more accurate to say I dislike mainstream/commercial music.
Music is funny stuff. In your youth you might think the music you listen to is really cool, happening, at the forefront of... Technology... For me in the 1990's I loved the music that transitioned from House music to Rave music. It had Hip-Hop and Rap to one side of it, and Techno on the other, and host of other genres like ambient swirling around. It wasn't all I liked, but it was the music that had the most energy for me. It became Jungle and Drum'n'Bass, Electronica, Intelligent Dance Music, etc. Some people, if they saw this, might correct me on the history here, but this is just a summary of how it was for me, not them.
I liked the artists that pushed the boundaries, and found myself listening to music further and further away from the mainstream, and my music tastes had less and less in common with that of my friends.
Looking for music which pushes boundaries, or does something new and original, or different, you better be either very open minded or prepared for disappointment. I ended up listening to music I didn't exactly enjoy that much, and from there it's a bit like diving into some sort of musical limbo.
My social life consists of occassional blips so most of my recent music listening is a private matter so naturally, to me music is problematic to share with others. Listening to new music and being excited by it on your own just isn't the same as listening to new music and sharing that excitement with others.
So I guess now it's the final nail in the coffin of my youth - plus I'm 42 next year.
The last time the children in the flat above were running around in circles above my head in the flat above, I was reminded of "Bucephalus Bouncing Ball" by the Aphex Twin. It's a real beauty, though perhaps the last third isn't as strong as the first two. I also had recently purchased a 2.1 speaker system for my computer which I hadn't yet had the opportunity to put through it's paces. A 2.1 speaker system if you don't know, is a pair of stereo speakers with a sub-woofer. I was pretty impressed with the punch it had, welterweight say. Unfortunately it makes a small whining noise when plugged in but powered off which after a while becomes quite irritating.