Friday, November 04, 2005

I Hear Ugly People

One of the things you get used to in this city is noise. You can't help but be inundated with all types of noise. Which is why it's especially unsettling when you find yourself put off by a noise.

This afternoon, I had the misfortune of sitting next to someone emitting this type of noise. He seemed like a perfectly normal person, which somehow made it even more uncomfortable. During the extended period which I sat next to him, he would periodically grunt. Initially, I didn't even realize it was him. Once I did realize it though, it became impossible to focus on anything else.

Comparing the grunts to other noises, I first thought of pigs. This wasn't particularly unpleasant. I rather like pigs. Upon discovering that the noise was my very un-pig-like seat mate though, this image flew out the window. I then focused on the grunt frequency, which made me think of people moving pianos. Although a definitive drop from the pig imagery, this was also not horribly unpleasant...and that's when it happened. It occurred to me what the grunts really sounded like. Sex.

From that point forward, I couldn't stand it, nor could I remotely concentrate on anything else. Everytime I heard one of these low short grunts, all I could think about was the 30-something unattractive dude sitting next to me engaged in various sexual acts. This is not to say that I visualized myself in any of these images. If I had been even remotely attracted to him, that would've arguably been an improvement. No, I had the sort of nightmarish flashes that one associates with mentions of your parents doing the deed. Accountanty-looking guy jerking off. Accountanty-looking guy with Paris Hilton. Accountanty-looking guy in leather, with Tom Cruise.

It was one of those truly disturbing moments where, you desperately don't WANT to be thinking about something, and suddenly you can think of nothing else. The absolute worst part was, I soon realized that Accountanty-looking guy had absolutely zero control over the grunting. Although I couldn't exactly ask him, it appeared to be either an anxiety or respiratory tick. All of this combined to make me both horrified by my own imagination, and incredibly shamed at the apparent perviness of my subconscious.

The moral of this story is that I have since purchased some ear plugs. I plan on wearing them whenever I leave the sanctity of my apartment. There is the very real possiblity I may be hit by an errant taxi, but if it will keep the bad people out of my head, it's a sacrifice I'm willing to make.

Ms. J


Blogger Berry said...

I see a lot of people wearing earplugs in the city, particularly in the subway. It is a very noisy city...I wrote a post about it last month because I couldn't sleep for an entire month! That pig looks like the one a lady was walking down the street in my old neighborhood. I wrote a post about that too last month. LOL! This city!

3:47 PM  

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