Monday, September 29, 2008

Is it violent to drop a packet of flour on people from eight floors up?

At about 5 o'clock on Wednesday morning I got woken up because there were a few people in the laneway being really noisy. They were drinking, and they had a stereo going, playing hiphop, and they were rapping with each other. It went on for about half an hour, and I really needed to get a lot more sleep, so I got a packet of flour and dropped it out the window, so that it hit the steel mesh just above their heads, and exploded all over them. I'd thought they'd probably get pretty angry, but they started going, 'Shhhh! Shhhh!' to each other and turned the stereo off. And they hung around for a while still, but they weren't noisy anymore.

I got what I wanted, but was wondering whether it was very nice of me to drop flour on those people. Sometimes some of our neighbours throw garbage bags full of water at people down in the laneway, and I think using flour was certainly less violent than that. I'd mainly wnated to give them a surprise so that they'd realise there were people around trying to sleep, and I think that worked.
I messaged Simon later that day asking if he reckoned it was violent or nonviolent to drop a packet of flour on people from eight floors up and he said, 'Depends if you drop the bag of flour from eight floors up ironically. And if they deserved it.'
What do you think?


Electric Chikken said...

Not in this case. If you dropped an intact bag of flour which landed on one of the people, then...yes.

...but that obviously has nothing to do with this.

I guess if you weren't too comfortable with how effective yelling down at them might be, then this seemed like a pretty creative solution. Should have dyed the flour green, though.

Christop said...

Yeah, I was kicking myself that I didn't dye it green. But it was organic flour.
And yelling isn't usually that helpful, they just yell back.
Unless you're yelling at them because they're breaking into someone's car.

Simon said...

Probably the most nonviolent thing to do would've been to go down and patiently explain how you feel about what they're doing. I don't know if dropping the flour was likely to win them over to your point of view...but damn, it must've been satisfying.

Tab said...

I think that the flour was probably less violent than yelling, in that you got the message across with minimal harm, unless you knew/thought they were gluten intolerant... in which case there would be ethical issues.

Taqwa said...

I'm with Chikken on this one. What you did wasn't violent at all (Hilarious though!). If you'd dropped the bag on them (as opposed to onto the grill above them) then that would have been violent..

Christop said...

I've actually done what Simon suggested before (going down and explaining that people live here and are trying to sleep) and it has actually worked.
(Although that situation didn't involve alcohol or hiphop.)