Have you ever been in a place where you hear every noise, and every one of them bothers you to the point of rage?
No? Just me then? Well okay.
I’m sure many (most) people get irritated by the noise of someone chewing something crunchy with their mouth open. Or the widely acknowledged favourite: the sound of someone drawing their nails down a chalkboard.
I remember a time when I was working at my cubicle at the office. The guy in a nearby cubicle was eating something crunchy. It was housed in a ceramic bowl, and he was using a metal spoon to scoop it up, after which he deposited it into his gaping maw, whereupon he chewed it with his mouth wide open.
This was no gentle scooping; there was an element of frantic panic about it. He clanged that spoon against the sides of the bowl like it owed him money. No way was he going to allow a single Cheerio to escape.
I heard another person talking animatedly on his phone. There was heat to his discussion, a passion that could not be ignored (try as I might). Every time I tried to look at my monitor, he erupted with another valiant point and my thoughts were cockroaches scurrying away.
Yet someone else stood up at his cubicle and laughed about something over the baffle wall with his neighbour.
When I heard that metal spoon begin to scrape the ceramic bowl in its final hunt for the least tiny crumb of errant cereal, my anger reached its zenith. I stood up and looked around….and then noticed these noises were affecting only me. Everyone else could filter all of this out, but I couldn’t.
I wanted to throw my keyboard across the room. Instead, I stood there in helpless and impotent rage, wondering what the heck was wrong with me.
The other day I saw the movie “Age of Adeline”.
I picked the film because of its interesting premise: it’s about a woman who, for some strange reason, stops aging at the age of 29. As the decades flow by, she finds she has to hide herself, move and change her name frequently so that she doesn’t come under scrutiny.
As movies go I have no idea whether it’s great or awful. I mean, I have an opinion about it, but freely acknowledge that it’s skewed by something that may seem inconsequential to others.
Namely, Blake Lively.
I’m not a fan of hers. I’ve seen in her in other films, but was not impressed or depressed by her presence in them.
The thing that stood out in “Adeline” was Blake’s voice. It is the most sweetest, calm and soothing voice I’ve ever heard.
I sat there in the dark, just blissing out on her melodious phrases, couched in the poetic rhythms of speech from elder eras.
I don’t think I’ve ever been so amazed by vocal sounds as much as hers, before the movie or since.
This affected me so much that I plan to see the movie again. It’s like a spa for the ears.