“Neighbors” is a short story by American author and humorist, Robert Benchley. It was first published in the New Yorker magazine in 1920.
The story is about a man who is trying to get some work done in his apartment, but he is constantly interrupted by the noise coming from his neighbor’s apartment next door. The neighbor is a violinist who practices for hours on end every day, and the noise is driving the man insane.
The man tries various tactics to get his neighbor to stop playing the violin, but nothing seems to work. He tries talking to him, banging on the walls, and even playing his own gramophone at full volume to drown out the sound of the violin.
Finally, the man decides to take drastic action and calls the police to report the noise. When the police arrive, they find that the neighbor has been dead for several days, and the violin has been playing on a phonograph that was left on repeat.
In the end, the man realizes that he was the only one who could hear the noise, and that he had been driven to the brink of insanity by his own imagination. The story is a humorous take on the concept of “the grass is always greener on the other side,” and the idea that we often complain about things that we don’t fully understand.
Edward F. Cline, Buster Keaton
Buster Keaton, Edward F. Cline
Buster Keaton, Edward F. Cline, Jack Duffy