Britta's Letters from (and sometimes about) Berlin

Wednesday, 17 February 2016

Vers(a)e instead of Vice

One is often in for a surprise if you go through life with open eyes and open ears.
Though: that with the ears I'll take back.
OK - I have the hearing of a bat - which is quite annoying sometimes, especially when the person in the flat above your bedroom wears iron-clumps as bedroom slippers, thinks that a carpet on the floor board from 1902 - creak, creak - is utter luxury, and has to visit the loo three times at night. (Remember? We moved our bedroom in this big Berlin flat 4 times - he follows...)
Hearing loss is now mainstream: not a symptom of growing old any longer - the young show it off proudly too. Uni-deafness instead of unisex. (Huh? Eh?) Deaf by disco-music, deaf by in-ear headphones.
You (hopefully) heard me complain about the ghetto blaster tunes at "A Quiet Passion" - yesterday I saw 'Maggie's Plan' - and - in another cinema: the same tornado howl!!!
The silver lining?
This infernal noise overlays all those spectators' crunching through hectoliters of popcorn while dear Emily D. is reciting her poetry.
Bliss - a different "Sound of Silence"...

PS: By the way: absolute silence in case of the Staatsbesuch from Israel - Gwil wrote, he couldn't find information in Austria, and Husband said, even the Hildesheimer Allgemeine (newspaper for a tiny city near Hannover) did not mention it. Strange.

11 comments:

  1. I don't have your Bat-like hearing Britta which for me is a regret. However, having read this post may be there are some advantages after all.

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    1. Believe me, Rosemary - there are advantages. Just 'normal' is fine.

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  2. I share your bat-like hearing.....and a sensitive nose. To the crunching of the hectoliters of popcorn, add the slightly-rancid smell of the same popcorn.....painful!

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    1. I also can smell things very easily, - you know now, Pondside, my father called it "overbred" - I call it sensitive.

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  3. "Overbred!" That is too funny.
    Actually, there is no accounting for hearing. I can hear everyone and everything, except my granddaughters. I cannot convince them of the advantage of speaking up, speaking clearly, enunciating--all things to stand in good stead in future--so, I wear hearing aids. There there is my son in law, who asks for a repeat so often I convinced them to get his hearing tested. It is normal. Conclusion--he hears selectively.

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    1. Well, my father always was convinced that he had brought fresh blood into the aristocratic 'blue' blood of my mother's family :-)
      When starting university, we had to do hearing tests (if you hear badly, you will pronounce badly) - and the results were stunning. As those at my otologist (different ones - they said: 150%). But of course: if someone mumbles, one has to have recourse to lip-reading :-)
      "Selective hearing" - that's very convenient sometimes!

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  4. I come from a loud noisy and large family. I learned how to block noise. Children playing loudly do not bother me at all. But for some reason rude noises (like belching)ump into my ears and scream. if the television on but I am not really paying attention to it suddenly I will pick up the sound of improper grammar. I guess my hearing is also selective.

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    1. I love the laughter of children too - it is more loud music or cinema speech that really hurts(!). In Hamburg the pre-World War I building - that was hastily rebuilt after WW II - had so thin walls, that I could hear what people two(!) storeys down were saying into their telephone!

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  5. For the past 2 months I have been getting used to my first pair of hearing aids. There are times, especially in theaters, when I simply must turn them off. For some reason that I don't understand, it has become common for sound systems to be set painfully loud --possibly encouraged by manufacturers of hearing aids.

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    1. I think that it is pretty hard to get used to hearing aids - though valuable, iny and inconspicuous they have become (a big 'Cheers' to technique!) The hearing is pretty sensitive.
      But I think it is very kind to use hearing aids - my mother was often upset when my father "forgot" to use them - (though I might have a little suspicion to the why) - but if one has to repeat a thing over and over again, it makes conversation difficult - though it is not the fault of the person concerned.

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    2. Ah - and you might be right about 'manufactors' of deafness :-)

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