Sunday, January 19, 2014

Hear Ye, Hear Ye

I was watching a movie with my husband today when all of a sudden he paused it, looked to the left and to the right then nodded, “Motorcycle.” He resumed the movie.

I asked him to pause it again. “What do you mean, motorcycle?” 

He thumbed over his shoulder and in the next moment a motorcycle roared past our house. “See?” He said, with his ever so familiar I-told-you-so expression.

He resumed the movie and I sat there wondering why I hadn’t heard the engine coming. Is it because my hearing isn’t as good as his is or am I better at filtering out meaningless noise? Often, he tells me when my cell phone is ringing. It baffles me that he can hear it because I keep it on vibrate, it’s inside my purse and is in the next room. How could anyone possibly hear that well? Especially when music or the television is on?

You would think his hearing would be impaired from all the years he has been a musician but it certainly is not. We were recording music one evening and suddenly he stopped playing.

“What’s that noise?”
I shrugged. “I don’t hear anything.”
“It sounds like Rice Krispies in a suit case.”
After a lengthy investigation we discovered it was the sound of carbonation coming from my diet Pepsi can. It had to be removed before we could continue recording.

He tells me when the coyote’s are yelping on yonder hills at night, what type of helicopters are flying overhead and can hear the neighbor’s kid practicing his dance moves in his back bedroom. No, we don’t share any common walls.  He knows when someone pulls into our driveway and which friend it is by the idle of the engine.

He is aware of how many scoops of ice cream that plop in my bowl when I sneak to the kitchen for a snack. He can hear me take the plastic top from the peanut can no matter how quiet I try to be and why does the plastic chocolate syrup bottle have to make that rude noise when you squeeze it? It must sound like a faulty air horn to him. He hears it all. It just isn’t natural.  It feels like I’m under surveillance. 

I’ll bet the government has use for someone with his hearing abilities. I’m sure someone is conducting studies for the acoustic analysis of the sound of the flight patterns of chestnut tiger butterflies.  Just having the capacity to hear bacteria communicating and chatting it up with each other before they have the chance to infect could put us on the road to riches!

We’ve been talking about getting a dog. Great. Now I’ll have two individuals with superior audio skills who will be monitoring my activities.  I will never be outside of their awareness. Ever. I may have to invest some dollars in a white noise generator or a toy drone to act as a decoy if I want to escape their detection. But then why would I want to do that when it gives me such a wonderful feeling of being safe?

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