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Neighborhood Noise

September 11th, 2005

[Note: sounds should open in a new window when clicked. For full effect, play them all in sequence.]

Well, now that the election is over, hopefully now all the noisy political campaign loudspeaker trucks will stop crisscrossing the neighborhood all day long until 8:00 in the evening. But that’s little relief, because just as the loudspeaker trucks and vans vanish into the night, the Star-Trek-Phaser-on-Overload insects are startup up. I swear, they sound just like phasers about to blow up, a constant, incredibly loud, piercing high-pitched whistle. And then at sunrise, the other bugs, including the annoying “MEEEE, ME-ME-ME-ME-MEEEEEEE!!” cicadas and the Bone-Chilling-Wail-Eminating bugs, get started for the day. That along with the morning crows and partridges, and the afternoon bulbuls. But that only lasts through the summer. When they stop, it’ll be just in time for the Kerosene-sellers to weave through every single parking lot in the neighborhood at 5 kph, with their loudspeaker-enhanced mind-numbing electronic note song: “DO-doo … do-Do-DOO-Doo-do … do-Do-DOO-DOO-do-do-DO-do-do-DOO-DOO!!” Now. Repeat that. ONE… HUNDRED… TIMES.

I suppose I can at least thank God that they don’t all come at once, all the time. But what I would like to ask is, what happened to that famous Japanese neighborhood “wa” that we heard about? Okay, so we can’t control the bugs or the birds, but what’s with all the loudspeaker trucks? I want some wa, dammit!

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  1. September 12th, 2005 at 04:09 | #1

    Sorry Luis….all those sounds made me smile. Maybe it’s different because I don’t live there full time, but all of those (except the kerosene sellers, never been there in Winter)sounds made me think of various pleasant moments I have spent in Tokyo. I’ll trade places with you anytime;)

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