Unusual Occurence!?

Just got off the phone (after being on hold for 10 minutes) with an LAPD nonemergency dispatcher where I was dropping a dime on the fucking garageband bastards behind our house who decided tonight would be a good night to regale the neighborhood with their abject lack of musical prowess.

Anyway, when the dispatcher came on the line, she asked me what incident I was reporting and I told her “disturbing the peace,” and when she asked for further specifics I gave them to her. Then she said, “I’m sorry sir, but do to an unusual occurence presently happening in the city we’re not sending officers out on calls of this nature. You’re welcome to call back in an hour or two if the situation still requires an officer response.”

“Unusual occurence?” I asked.

“Yes sir,” she answered. And it was clear that was all I was gonna get from her and the garageband in the house behind us was going to get to play on.

In the meantime, anyone notice or hear of anything unusual occuring out there as in an event apparently warranting some sort of tactical alert?

UPDATE (03.11 07:59 08:59 a.m.): With nary an additional rock heaved at the garage, all quieted down after the band enthusiastically but horrifically attempted a cover of “Stairway To Heaven” (which in and of itself should be against local, state and federal laws). Perhaps they recognized how much they truly blew or someone else advised them of as much, or maybe SGVGoof came to my aid with a pair of wire cutters and killed the power (see the comments). Either way they left the stage shortly after 9 p.m. If they come back tonight I’ll attempt to record them and share the hell.

30 thoughts on “Unusual Occurence!?”

  1. One word. Vigilante. Silly man don’t you know how to pull their plug with insulated cable cutters? Urban guerilla warfare is never pretty.

  2. I think I know what the “unusual occurence” is: Winchells is having a 2-for-1 special on donuts.

  3. Will, sorry to hear about your ordeal.

    If my esteemed colleagues stopped by b/la at this hour, they’d probably be happy to share all the the details. I unfortunately can’t, for a variety of reasons – not the least of which is that I don’t work for or speak for that agency.

    In the interest in helping those who may be needlessly insomnic (and without speaking on behalf of any other agency), I am pleased to assure you that there is not any specific or escalating danger at this hour that should cause sleeplessness in the City of Los Angeles.

    If that should change, please don’t hesitate to tune into AM980-KFWB or AM1070-KNX for live reports whenever we at the Fire Department have something really important to share.

    I’m keeping an eye on a grass fire near the SB SR14 South of Agua Dulce Canyon Road being handled by our friends at LA County Fire, but it should not get into the City tonight.

    Please stay safe – and sleep well.

    Respectfully Yours in Safety and Service,

    Brian Humphrey
    Public Service Officer
    Los Angeles Fire Department

  4. There’s been a couple of helicopters flying above here in Silver Lake…but it is a day ending in “y” so that’s to be expected…

  5. Bad garage bands are THE WORST. They seem to play the same hideously bad song over and over again, too. Fortunately our neighborhood garage band has moved on to garage monster car-building.

  6. One time I called the LAPD about a really loud party at 3 AM. When they said that they wouldn’t send anyone out, I said “Fine, I’ll take care of it myself. Don’t be surprised if someone else calls 911 from inside that house.” The cops were there in 10 minutes, and shut the party down immediately.

  7. I dunno, Will…that Midnight Ridazz thing that you and I are so fond of can be pretty loud, too. Maybe you can’t have it both ways?

  8. Sorry Daniel, I’m missing the parallel. Certainly Midnight Ridazz is a raucous organism, but it’s a moveable one and I don’t see how my love of that portable party and my disdain of immobile inconsiderate neighbors somehow makes me guilty of wanting to have my cake and eat it too.

    If that’s how you roll than in your eyes I’m guilty of being a hypocrite. I can live with that because I certainly ain’t gonna stop riding on and I certainly ain’t gonna stop calling bullshit to rude behavior in the form of bad garagebands.

  9. News last night reported the city went on tactical alert after an oversell situation at a high school championship game at Fairfax High (I think the game was Fairfax vs. Pasadena High).

  10. umm… will, was really at 8pm? the cut off time to not be playing loud music is 11. they had every right to be playing whatever kind of music-good or bad- that they wanted to. just like we all do. just because it’s not that good does not mean that are breaking any law. don’t be such an old man.

  11. Aw, come on, Will. Let’s not kid ourselves. Ridazz goes through residential neighborhoods late at night, slowly, with people whooping and hollering and playing loud music. And let’s not forget the pre-ride assembly or the frequent long breaks, which often take place near residences. Remember when we used to start on Echo Park Ave? There were people living right across the street.

    I’m not trying to put down Ridazz–quite to the contrary. I’m just saying that self-righteousness regarding the playing of loud music at the (perfectly legal) hour of 8:00 PM on a Saturday night may not be quite the proper position to take, given your own choice of late-night weekend activity.

    You say you can’t see the parallel? I’d venture to guess that most of the people reading this can see them.

  12. There are no day or nighttime hours, per se, for disturbing the peace. If something is unreasonable and an officer responds, it is up to their best judgment to shut down the noise or let it be. If they shut it down, the offenders get a warning. If it happens again, the police can impound the electronic equipment that caused the noise (e.g. stereos, guitars, etc.)

  13. PLM, read it again kid. Slower this time. Sound out the letters. Yes, I made the initial call at 8 p.m., but the noise continued unabated until after 9 p.m. And while I’m sure you’re wetting your pants since that was still a full 120 minutes short of your fictional “11 p.m.” cutoff time, I’ll tell you exactly what I told the property owner when I walked around the block to confront him Sunday morning after the band kicked into high gear again: there is no legal window of opportunity wherein anyone has the right to disturb the peace. Period.

    And Daniel, I agree you’re not trying to put Ridazz down, you’re trying to put me down — and with a faulty argument now augmented with that “perfectly legal” hour crap again. Tell you what, leave your flawed logic that a pack of rowdy cyclists is the same as a garage band cranked to 11 outside my backdoor alone. Drop all that. Just show me the law that states disturbing the peace is a lawful activity at 8 p.m. on a Saturday night and I’ll shut up.

    But in the meantime, when a four-piece full electric band sets up and lets go full volume in a broken down garage that’s less than 40 feet from where this “old man hypocrite” is trying to enjoy the normal peace and quiet of my neighborhood — a peace and quiet I have every right to expect at any hour — I won’t nor do I have to tolerate it.

  14. Its amazing that you don’t see the disturbance that you do with the Ridaaz waking people up throughout town, and a rock band playing during prime time.

    Its perfectly reasonable to go next door and work it out. If they don’t abide, work it mano to mano.

    Describing yourself as a “nazi” about issues about this is another way of saying you are one of “those” fuddy-duddy, busybody, nosy types.

    Why live in the big city for peace and quiet, let alone a neighborhood historically fertile with rock musicians and bands?

    Move to the westside or something.

  15. Will, while I may or may not agree with your sentiments, I do find the way that you attack other commenters on these and other posts a little bit off putting. Would I be wrong in asking that you tone it down a little bit?

    In this case I am referring to your response to Daniel, who asked a perfectly reasonable question that did not seem like a personal attack.

  16. You say you can’t see the parallel? I’d venture to guess that most of the people reading this can see them.

    Regardless, I think Will would probably fully support the rights of anybody who’s disturbed by Ridazz to call the cops and complain about it. The issue isn’t whether somebody’s disturbing the peace, it’s whether they’re man enough to cop to it.

    Anyway, isn’t the point of this that the police said they wouldn’t respond? I’ve had that happen as well. Any time I’ve called about something at the same time that there was a high-speed chase happening, I’ve been told that the city’s on “tactical alert” and they aren’t responding to anything but life-threatening emergencies. That last time I was actually watching a drug deal happen and they told me too bad. Does anybody else find that idea, and the fact that I’m sure plenty of criminals know about it, frightening?

  17. Mariah, it’s a shame if you find my tone troublesome, because I’ve had ample opportunity to really off-put and refrained from doing so.

    So for any future reference you should know that I’m historically prone to these extended and potentially heated comment volleys with whoever reads my stuff be it a legit and above-board reader like Daniel or the likes of Cashew or PLM. And whether it suits you or not, I vigorously defend myself and support my point of view — especially in the face of the weak insults, lame judgments and misinformation I’ve had to endure here, and which you strangely have no qualms about.

  18. Will Campbell wrote:

    And Daniel, I agree you’re not trying to put Ridazz down, you’re trying to put me down

    How do you figure? I hope you don’t react this way to gentle criticism in real life.

    — and with a faulty argument now augmented with that “perfectly legal” hour crap again. Tell you what, leave your flawed logic that a pack of rowdy cyclists is the same as a garage band cranked to 11 outside my backdoor alone. Drop all that. Just show me the law that states disturbing the peace is a lawful activity at 8 p.m. on a Saturday night and I’ll shut up.

    Please establish, rather than merely asserting, that playing music audibly at 8:00 PM on a Saturday night constitutes the crime of disturbing the peace. And if you can do that, I would be sincerely interested in hearing your argument for the proposition that doing the same thing while on a bicycle does [i]not[/i] constitute disturbing the peace.

    I don’t have any hidden agenda here, BTW. I don’t believe that either activity, as described, rises to the level of a crime.

  19. Daniel, I’ve been accused of attacking you when really all I did was disagree with you and when I did so you patronized me with “Aw come on now Will” and the assertion that I was kidding myself all the while kidding yourself as to some codified hour up to and until disturbances are somehow allowed.

    Having said that why do you care how I react to criticism? Why do you even make a point of mentioning my reaction other than to further patronize me? Who are you to judge what manner and method in which I chose to rebut your argument. I react the way I react. If I wanna come in with a bunch of expletives, I’ll do so. If nothing else at least I made an attempt to communicate with you. To extend the dialogue, unlike others who could only at best suggest violence is the answer or that I move to the west side.

    And while you ignored my challenge to produce proof that disturbing the peace is a lawful activity at 8 p.m. on to a Saturday (as you incorrectly asserted it was), I will at least show you the courtesy of answering your challenge to me to establish that the playing of that music at that hour constitutes a crime, and do so simply by cutting-and pasting the pertinent section of Los Angeles Noise Ordinance as it sits on the books today:


    (Amended by Ord. No. 156,363, Eff. 3/29/82)

    (a) It shall be unlawful for any person within any zone of the City to use or operate any radio, musical instrument, phonograph, television receiver, or other machine or device for the producing, reproducing or amplification of the human voice, music, or any other sound, in such a manner, as to disturb the peace, quiet, and comfort of neighbor occupants or any reasonable person residing or working in the area.

    (b) Any noise level caused by such use or operation which is audible to the human ear at a distance in excess of 150 feet from the property line of the noise source, within any residential zone of the City or within 500 feet thereof, shall be a violation of the provisions of this section.

    (c) Any noise level caused by such use or operation which exceeds the ambient noise level on the premises of any other occupied property, or if a condominium, apartment house, duplex, or attached business, within any adjoining unit, by more than five (5) decibels shall be a violation of the provisions of this section.

    But don’t go switching arguments on me here. I never said that Midnight Ridazz does not disturb the peace. What I said was that side by side I can’t match them up as equal disturbances. To me several hundred riders cruising by my house with bells and whistles and cheers and Big Bike Dan’s stereo blasting over the course of a few minutes doesn’t compare to any hour solid of an inconsiderate neighbor’s blown-out garage rock essentially right outside my back door.

    I will tell you this, by and large Midnight Ridazz are well-behaved events. Should they deteriorate and become markedly less so, I would no longer participate.

    But does Ridazz disturb the peace? Sure it does. Is it in violation of the city ordinance as a whole? Absolutely. Me personally? Not so much. I tend to roll quieter than most — especially through the residential stretches we pass. Nevertheless, I wouldn’t deny any citizen the opportunity to drop a dime on us and make a complaint if we were keeping someone from their rightful peace and quiet and I would respectfully disperse if ordered to do so. In fact I would disperse before being ordered to do so.

    As I said waaaay in the beginning, if you feel that makes me some sort of hypocrite I can live with that, just like I can live with reacting to you and others in a way that you may or may not feel is justified.

    I am what I am and I do what I do. Ride on.

  20. @MEGAN:

    there are always tons of police cruisers in highland park. they usually bring their spotlighted helicopter circlers with them and do their own version of disturbing the peace …

    wonder if i could call about that?

  21. Will:

    The code you cite has three paragraphs defining a violation of the code.

    Paragraph “a” simply makes it illegal to disturb the peace of a “reasonable person.” Obviously, this is subjective, and must take into account the kind of neighborhood, the day and hour at which the noise is being made (this is where the 11:00 cutoff comes from, and it’s a matter of policy rather than law), and of course the reasonableness of the person complaining. You have not established that community standards in your neighborhood do not tolerate band practice, you have not established that the day of the week or the time of night are objectionable in themselves, and…well, I’ll leave the issue of the “reasonable person” alone for now, for fear of another everyone-on-the-internet-is-out-to-get-me screed.

    Paragraph “b” states that a violation has occurred when the noise is audible to a human ear in excess of 150 feet from the property line of the property where the noise comes from. You said in your post that you’re fewer than 40 feet away.

    Paragraph “c” makes it a violation when the noise is more than 5 decibels above the ambient noise level of any other occupied property. Without any way to know whether the band’s noise was in fact more than twice as loud as the ambient noise level inside your house, it’s not possible for me to say whether the band was in violation according to “c.”

    It’s interesting, though, that you come right out and say that Ridazz disturbs the peace. I seem to remember that our original discussion was whether you were trying to have it both ways. If you believe that both your neighbors and Midnight Ridazz disturb the peace, and that the only difference is that Ridazz disturbs the peace of far more people for a much shorter time, then that’s pretty much a textbook case of trying to have it both ways.

    And that’s the only thing that I really have any issue with. You want to be Mr. Fun Party Guy on Friday night on your bike, and then you want to be Mr. Crotchety Old Neighbor Guy on Saturday night in your house. You have a perfect right to switch roles to suit your own convenience if that’s what you want…just don’t be surprised when people find it a bit hypocritical and call you on it.

    I once had a roommate who would stay up late some nights with his friends in the living room, drinking and listening to loud music. None of us complained, because frankly it didn’t bother us and we did the same thing anyway. But if anybody else in the apartment had friends over when he was in bed, he would come out and throw a tantrum about how loud we were being. This wouldn’t have been so bad if the guy had been Nerdly Nerdlington, but coming from Jake McPartyguy it was really annoying. You see what I’m getting at?

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