HAVING ONLY ONE FUNCTIONAL HEADPHONE INCURS THE WORST CASE OF PANIC. I know this is a first-world problem at its core, but it is a seriously, big fucking, anyone-who-has-it problem nonethless. Like an old-timey clockmaker, as soon as there is a sign of one-failed earphone, a fizzle in your hedgerow, a crackle in your Fishman drum solo; a Shannon Hoon- croon gone missing... the fear sets in. Monacle in my eye (or just squinting on the Brown line), I will proceed to intricately disassemble the earbud with great care as if I have any idea what those copper, Asian-hair-thin wires actually even do. Yes- a little twist here, a little tuck there-- yes. See, this should do the trick. Testing..testing...nope. Now its worse. What was before a missing beat of sound is just, 420% DEAD- AIR. Get the paddles!!!!!! Taking it apart again with my thick-bitty fingers, twisting simultaneous copper strands around one another with thumbpad coercion; I am not even finished the final twist and my mind is pacing: IS IT WORKING?! This step occurs while the now-dissembled, disabled soundmachine dangles from my ear like an appendage of Eeyore; a frown from that weird mannequin that Lars thought was his girlfriend. The saddest headphone.
Beads of sweat start to well up. I cannot physically survive without music. Or worse, the inverse: general train noise. We all pretend that everyone else on the train doesn't exist. Unless someone is hot, and then you have eye-sex. Bust mostly, you pretend no one else is there. Which makes it terribly difficult, when some plaid pants girl just moved here from Olathe, KS, and is on the fucking phone the entire packed train ride just checking in with Mom & Dad after her first days at Groupon or whatever. Seriously, gag me. I wish you were standing closer to the door for imagination purposes. Ok- don't commit mental murder, Kel, just five more stops. Ok, I'll get untucked from this sweaty man's armpit at Fullerton, there are sure to be lots of people getting off there for the transfer. Is he wearing Old Spice? If I have music, this kind of just doesn't happen, and I've even missed my real stop because I was so into a jam. I'd even trade silence for pop music, which for me is saying something (please note I still love Britney always... she is in her own category of psychotic glory). But the other day, when this all really happened, it was not okay and it was t'urrbly hot and my fingers were twisting the headphone wires so hard I think I probably made them worse and broke them moreso and made them sweaty. Ew.
NOTHING IS WORKING. Alice, or whatever Olathe's name is, will not shut up. I'm now getting terribly anxious. Other people shooting her looks are piquing my neuroses further and I can't even make eye contact w anyone so I'll just stare at that bum barf over under the one-seater. Cool views. I'm stuck on this train-car, and now I even kind of have to poop, just like in sixth grade math when we took tests and Mrs. Frentzel, by the end of the year, would just drop me a hall pass with my test to soften my feminine, visceral, bodily embarrassment because yes, girls poop, but not to boys in sixth grade, and EVERY TEST, really, Kelley? We all know what you're doing, you sick freak. Yes. Its part of my crippling anxiety that has always been a part of my beautiful life. Get me nervous, I will potentially shit my pants, just try it. If you hate me, write this down. If you hate me, BREAK ONE OF MY EARBUDS.
The end result is always just buying a new pair. You are not Gepetto, and you can't fix that shit. Sorry to tell you. I've tried to buy fancy ones and they don't last longer. In fact, I've bought everything besides Apple's giveaways which basically-if there was such a thing as crutches for your ear- I'd need them after wearing those pieces of crap. Who the hell likes those things? Do they fit anyone? F awf, Steve Jobs. After purchasing your replacements, and when you ever get the packaging open, which can only be done functionally by like, Bobby Fisher, or someone with highly- specialized Autistic focus, that virginal insertion is like the first time you heard Zakk Wylde shred guitar - earth-shattering, blood-stained beauty. It is your first kiss, your last first kiss, your grandma's hug, a surprise piece of snail mail, it's your rich-ass dowry; it is the silence of Olathe. It is everything. Until then, I wish you patience if you are suffering from OES (One Earbud Syndrome). Not to be taken lightly, it can, and will offer side effects of UF (Unnecessary Frustration), SSBF (Super Scary Bitch Face), or even...BFTTTS (Being Forced to Talk to Strangers)*note-we all know this can be avoided by leaving the blank headphones still in-ears- which is normally my move...but the sound! UGH- it sounds weird. Fair warning. And where do all the one-dead headphones go to die? Your shoes of course. Until we meet again, OES. RIP earbuds, there's a new pair in town.
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