Sunday, May 11, 2008

I Can't HEAR You.

Modern technology allows us to say ‘fuck off’ in a socially acceptable way.

Words: Amy Huynh

Headphones are like the ‘do not disturb’ sign that you find hanging on hotel-room doors. It’s a privacy statement. You enjoy the music, whilst everyone else knows to leave you alone, without you even having to lift a finger.

The explosion of portable music systems, such as the MP3 and iPod, has encouraged this passive form of communication; just shove on your headphones and you’re suddenly off-limits. It’s a magical people repellent. These ingenious contraptions allow us to shut out the world, even in the most public of places.

I’m a regular bus and train commuter. I know that when it comes to catching public transport, headphones/earphones are a must. They work in avoiding the weirdos and twats that always seem to lurk in these public domains. My regular weirdo is an old man, who on every bus trip takes it upon himself to sidle up to me and whisper: “Hello, you look like my daughter”.

For the record, I don’t look like his daughter (he’s shown me pictures), I’m Asian and she’s European. I also have it on good authority that he uses this line on every girl he meets on the bus. Weirdooo. It’s cases like this when you whip out the headphones and stare out the bus window. Unfortunately this doesn’t stop the old man from staring in my direction, but it does fend off any conversation, and eventually he loses interest.

Headphones/earphones are not only used for dodging the creepy. They come in handy in easing out of conversations – particularly when you’re feeling anti-social. This is when you leave one ear-piece in your ear, whilst the other dangles on the side. It’s not rude; it just shows that you can multitask. And if the conversation dies, then luckily you have the other ear-piece to occupy your vacant ear. This avoids any additional conversation from starting. That’s right, embrace anti-socialism.

Music is your friend. Music is inspiration. Music is pretty much everything. Having a set of rancid quality earphones, just doesn’t give it any justice. A statement of privacy should be made with style.

There are some pretty nifty headphones around which makes the listening experience simply divine.

Got your wires in a tangle? Say hello to cordless headphones. These will let you rock out to your music pain-free. No longer will you look like a fool by spending half your life untangling your wires. Just be prepared to dish out a few extra dollars to get these Bluetooth wireless headsets. And at all costs, avoid headphones with antennas, unless of course you really do want to look the fool.
Even better, now there are ‘noise cancelling’ headphones out in the market. If I couldn’t hear you before, there’s absolutely no chance of hearing you now. These headphones allow full self-immersion with sublime audio quality, by cancelling out external sounds.

Oh, and it gets better. These classy headphones are even good for your health. BONUS! This is because there’s no longer a need to raise the volume to deafening decibels to block out the shit of the outside world.

So embrace solitary existence and get some noise cancelling headphones, and while you’re at it, some dark sunnies too. People will know you mean business, and they’ll bugger off.


Annette Lin said...

ewww that old man sounds disgusting. And how is that a valid pick-up line? More like a creep-alert.
Anyway, great point about earphones - if only I stopped losing mine...

Bonita Silva said...

oh yes, i love to embrace me some anti-socialism when frequenting public transport. it keeps out the old men, the fobs, and the ghetto music blaring out of the 12 year old's phone.

henree said...

or breaking them nettepoo! xPP

lol i see you people have employed another writer xPP

Annette Lin said...

Do you have to call me nettepoo in public? :P

Stephanie Kok said...

aww you guys!

Back to the article. I too, use my headphones for this reason...but it didn't help block out the sound of 2 classes of primary school children and some parents going on a field trip.

...maybe I should get me some noise-cancelling ones...

Emily said...

ha ha thats the funniest, its so true, it's a whole new anti social state of being. death to small talk!!

stella said...

uh ok to the other comments :)
just wanted to say this is one of my fav. articles (that i've read so far- working my way through amidst school work.)

I think its great wat u guys are doing, love the layouts, the name "the small print", the contributor profiles, the background and all.

hi nette!

xo Stels