Sounds deadly

I can see the scenario unfold:

The desk sergeant asks the officer what happened.

“Granola. Crunchy granola,” the officer states.

Seems a couple had a fight and the husband was stabbed with a spoon.

The wife couldn’t take it anymore.

The sergeant shakes her head.

“Another case of Misonphonia. When will it ever end?”

Misonphonia sure sounds like some kind of misery.

Mis refers to dislike while phonia refers to noise.

They’ve finally found a word to describe the reaction when folks can’t stomach the sound of people slurping their soup, chomping on Crackerjacks or snorting snot in their throats.

While some folks spend their days looking at ways to cure Ebola or end hunger, I spend my time avoiding folks who munch.

In my youthful days, eating in front of someone was considered rude, and food was banned on the metro and in classrooms.

So it’s hard for me when a fellow bus-rider scarfs down a burrito at our stop.

Even libraries today serve up coffee and scones, and my fellow professors down burgers and fries in department meetings. One of my colleagues even licks the top of her yogurt container.

It drives me nuts.

Barron Lerner, a professor of medicine, wrote recently in the New York Times that some individuals are so sensitive to the affront of smacking they become enraged.

And while it may not lead to mariticide like in my homemade scenario above, Lerner says the condition is real: Chewing, sniffing and sucking can send people like him and me around the bend.

I can’t stand the sound of knives being sharpened. Or someone snapping their gum.

And when we have ice cream at home, my husband’s tongue runs laps around the bowl.

But the worst is the sound of crunchy granola at 5 in the morning.

Time to hide the spoons.



About Cynthia Coleman Emery

Professor and researcher at Portland State University who studies science communication, particularly issues that impact American Indians. Dr. Coleman is an enrolled citizen of the Osage Nation.
This entry was posted in family values, misonphonia, native press, Native Science, writing and tagged , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

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