Ear Buds Will Go Out of Style

26 September 2007

Take a minute to think about earbuds. They don’t provide the best sound (unless you shell out $400 for the really good ones),there’s now evidence that they can damage your ears, and they can be straight up uncomfortable. Plus, ever feel some trepidation when sharing earbuds with someone? Like, I don’t want your earwax in my canal? So why the fixation on earbuds? Why not wear muff earphones–which sound better, feel better and are more hygenic? It’s obvious: fashion. Earbuds are chic, in the way that they can disappear behind a wall of hair and only be recognizable by the wires peeking ou of them.

Some researchers say that they are seeing young people with hearing loss that equals that of older people. (Like that episode of Seinfeld where Kramer experiences a lifetime of smoking in one evening, our generation is experiencing lifetimes of screaming at the TV, waiting for screeching subways and fireworks in just a few years). It’s not just that earbuds are louder than other earphones (between 6 and 9 decibels), it’s that they’re right up against your ear. Try and recall your high school physics class for a moment. What hurts more: a woman standing on your foot wearing a flat shoe or standing on your foot wearing a stiletto? The stiletto, duh. Well, that’s what earbuds are like: a stiletto of sound pressing on your eardrums. That can’t be good, can it?

When people realize the true suckiness of earbuds, they will go out of fashion, and then I won’t have to feel bad about being the only girl on the subway wearing big chunky muff headphones. So you can see why I am eager to see them fall out of favor…


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Posted by Mirela Gluck at 03:54 PM

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