earworm

repetunitis AKA melodymania AKA involuntary musical imagery


Word Spy has it right:

Nearly everybody has been mentally tortured at one point in their lives by an “earworm” — a tune that keeps repeating itself over and over in their heads.

Mental torture! Anguish! Misery & agony!
…well, okay, how about really really annoying?


WIRED claimed in its June 2008 issue:

Getting “Eye of the Tiger” stuck in your head in the result of a glitch in your auditory cortex.  This part of your brain processes sounds and stores them for later recall.  It powers up and can start crooning uncontrollably after hearing just a few notes of a familiar tune.  Want it to stop?  Listen to the whole song or do some math.

I was excited to read about a way to get rid of an earworm!
But these ‘solutions’ didn’t work for me, dang it.
Of course, I was creating my own math problems… maybe I should have grabbed a textbook or worksheet.

Today it has been a Captain Hammer song, Everyone’s A Hero In Their Own Way but for a few l-o-o-o-o-ng weeks it was Bobby Darin’s Irresistable You.  For the past month, it has been Hello Dolly for 24 hours after every Kinetic Swing practice because it is our new Shim Sham song.

Hieu Tran Phan suggests that “research also indicates that people who get the most earworms tend to listen to music frequently and have neurotic habits, such as biting pencils or tapping fingers,”  which sounds to me like he’s blaming the victim!

Laugh if you must (yeah, I suppose you must), but I used to do a lot of DDR since it was a way to be active that I didn’t actively hate.  But I had to give it up because the songs (Brick House, Tough Enough, Wherever You Are, Love Shine, Monkey Punk, Rubberneckin’) got stuck so deep in my brain that they were pushing out any useful stuff in there.  So, earworms actually have a negative effect on my physical health as well as my mental health.

 

 

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