An introspective story of neighbors, movies, and marriage
from short-story master Tobias Wolff
Lying stiffly in their separate beds, a husband and his wife
are woken in the middle of the night to the sound of their fighting neighbors. There
are three of them—a man, a woman, and a young child. With their blasting
stereos, violent interludes, and steamy make-up sessions, the wife has had
enough. The husband, however, is preoccupied with other thoughts—sex, movies,
and humanity’s capacity to adapt and change. Understated yet poignant, “Next Door” is a reflection on the
spectrum of human companionship, from mundane restraint to explosive passion.
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