Thursday, March 05, 2009

Enjoy Your Hearing Loss Fellow Metro Rider!

Thanks to my new job, I'm a regular on the red line from Wheaton to the gullet of transfer points around Metro Center. It seems in the time since I last rode regularly, many Metro experiences still hold true:
Perhaps it's due to the advent of more smartphones and lower-priced MP3 players, but there's an abundance of loud headphones. I'm not only talking about hearing random bass sounds that wouldn't prevent you from taking a nap, I'm talking about the many riders whose music I've heard quite clearly despite sitting 4 rows away.

Kids from "The Last Dragon" rocked their boombox on their stoop, but not the subway because that's no place to invade personal listening space. Why don't Metro riders follow?

What are they thinking playing their music at such a high volume? Are fellow riders going to think they're cool or give them a thumbs up saying they appreciate their taste in music? Oh, I know, maybe they think there's a record producer looking for new talent and need someone in touch with the young hip-hop scene. The executive will overhear their blaring tunes and sign them on the spot!

There are starving musicians in the subway for a we don't have to hear music on the train.

Seriously, they must know it's incredulously loud so what gives? Just because Metro doesn't allow your boombox means you have to turn up the next best thing? The only thing louder on Metro in the last 3 weeks was this one guy who snored up a storm, but at least that's a natural condition whose noise isn't purposely rude.

Will one of the nation's greatest musicians be noticed in a D.C. Metro stop during rush hour? Violinist Joshua Bell experimented for Gene Weingarten's Sunday Magazine story in The Washington Post.

I take solace knowing that for as annoying as their awful music is to me, they're just damaging their eardrums more and more. Then again, while I'm happy to hear them suffer, it just means they'll have to turn their music up even more.

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