Earworms!

The Earworm is a prevalent little critter that seems to plague everyone that calls the vast intarwebz home. Those of us who are susceptible did coin the Rick-Roll, after all. Then there’s Magical Trevor, whose tricks are ever so clever. And who could forget Badger Badger (MUSHROOM! MUSHROOM!) and the most recent Earworm Friday…where the most difficult decision of the day is which seat you can take. (Personally, though, I prefer the Gang Fight version…)

Yesterday, my Earworm got me caught and called out. I spend a great deal of my days listening to call center agents’ calls and then typing up feedback to give to them. In the midst of my moment of developmental genius, I indulged in a rather dangerous habit – humming to myself. It’s not really the humming that is dangerous, but the fact that I don’t really pay much attention to what I’m humming (or singing) that gets me in trouble. Since I’m something of a hard-rock kind of girl, I really have to rely on my inner censor to bleep out the bad words, or at least sing them softly enough that anyone within earshot can’t hear them. It amuses people to hear me singing/humming songs by my (fantasy) rock star boyfriend, David Draiman and his band Disturbed or Eminem or Billy Joel or Snoop…particularly when they follow each other in such a Motley Crue (…oh, and they’re in the mix there too, somewhere). But yesterday, it was nothing so…controversial. Yesterday, I got caught humming the Brahm’s lullaby. Why? I have no freakin’ clue. None. It was just what was stuck in my head at the time, it seems. But after it was brought to my attention (which much laughter and some comments about being adorable), I got to thinking about those insidious little bastards, Earworms.

I have a peculiar vulnerability to them, and not just musically. I get words stuck in my head. I wake up with them rattling around in my skull, and most of the time, I know what they mean, but there are times when I don’t. The most memorable one I can think of is “vituperation.” That bad boy banged against my synapses for DAYS when it showed up. Today, it’s “surge.” No particular reason, but I woke up with thoughts of surges, the shape and flow of the word, the way it feels when you say it, the images it brings to mind, the emotion. Weird, I know, but it’s part of the way I’m wired. “Sluice” tagged on for good measure, but only in the shadows, peeking around big brother “surge” just to make its presence known.

For now, I’m sitting here waiting for my next agent to finish their call and come sit with me to listen to their calls and discuss the feedback I have for them with images of surging tides, surging electrical charges, crowds surging like a wave and pressing up against the dias upon which a rock-God plays and the way the crowd will sluice around the stage, human water crashing against the scaffolding stage, hands raised like white-palmed spray straining, begging for benediction. I’m thinking about creative juices surging through me, sluicing through the crannies in my gray-matter and waiting, just waiting to be released through the tips of my fingers to create something…anything.

I can’t wait until my lunch break….

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