Hearing Voices

When I first started hearing voices my landlord had just installed a new exhaust fan in the bathroom. We live near an airbase and what I heard sounded like a radio transmission. It also could have been radio banter between two feisty newscasters, and there is a public radio station down the road, so I thought that was a possibility too.

No one else could hear it. People started looking at each other in that knowing way when I mentioned it, asking me if I was feeling alright. I stopped telling people about it before long.

I had never heard the voices before the fans were installed.

Finally, years later, I learned about a thing called Apophenia, which is the audio version of Pareidolia, you know, when you see things in random shapes

People with apophenia have very active brains that search for patterns in the random noises of the modern and natural world. That is why people like us hear birds that tweet “Cheater! Cheater!” and washing machines that chum out catchy one-liners during the wash cycle,  like, “The jig is up. The jig is up. The jig is up.”

I can’t tell you how many doctors raised their eyebrows when I told them about the radio transmissions; not one of them mentioned apophenia. I had to find out about that on my own, accidentally.  I am 100% certain it changed my diagnosis and you know, those kinds of things are hard to get off one’s medical records.

Anyway, If you hear interesting things in the world and you can’t quite figure out where the sound is coming from, or if you are fairly certain the bird is really not telling a story about his friend, Monique who was a teacher and a cheater-cheater-cheater, even though it sure sounds like that, you might have apophenia. And no, you don’t need medication for that. However, something to take notes with might come in handy because you might get some pretty wild ideas from the wires in the walls.

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