Troll“You will hear an interview…”

And for the fourth time in six minutes, I slam my face against the keyboard to my office mate’s consternation. Surely, the words themselves do not elicit ideas of horror-craven shit-filled nightmare of hate, agony and endless torture. But there are several factors why this is so.

First, the voice is mine. Second, it is pouring into my ears via earphones. Third, I am creating a listening exam for the university so I am forced to listen over and over again in order to create questions. Creating a test, however, has become secondary to finding every flaw with my voice. I hear every accidental lip, tongue smack and lisp, every misarticulation and tooth click, every over-aspirated P, speech disfluency (uh, um) and every stutter. In six minutes I have become a heavy breathing, sexually predatory forest troll.

This is pure torture.

Exacerbating this torture is the vision of dozens of university students listening to my voice with intent. This vision involves me hitting Play on the CD player in front of the room and then doing a strip tease as the students listen to my voice. With the level of my momentary degradation, the vision continues with me changing into a Mummer’s outfit and dancing the Macarena.

My face hits the keyboard again. My office mate grabs a coffee mug and steps out of the room.

It’s no news flash that everyone hates something about themselves. And there’s nothing your sadistic side enjoys more than analyzing that flaw until you induces tears. Whether it’s staring at a bald spot in the bathroom mirror, covering a flabby chin with a scarf or holding back your real laugh in a movie theater, we humans have evolved a way of analyzing our most self-conscious flaws until we want to die. What’s humorous is that this loathed trait is usually not a flaw and if it is, it’s so minor that they are the only person who it bothers. In evidence of that, four of my colleagues have complimented my voice, telling me that it is “silky smooth” and that “I should be on the radio.” Each of these compliments sends me red-faced into shaking fits, wondering why any of my friends would be this cruel to a man with such a voice like a syphilitic toad.

Like any (quasi)rational person, I know the flaw, if in fact one does exist, is minor and in no way shapes me as a human.

However, rationality is for later. Rationality is for when I’m not forced to listen to my voice again and again pumping in through devil-made earphones. Rationality is for when we’re discussing your irrational concerns or his irrational concerns. But not mine.

Still, I have a job to do and gain the determination to go once more into the breach. After taking a break, I sit back down at my desk and place the ear phones in again.

“You will hear an interview,” the forest-dwelling sexual offending troll croaks into the receiver. He drops his face to the keyboard.

His office mate leaves for the day.

  1. #1 by Andy on October 11, 2012 - 9:43 pm

    With Halloween fast approaching, I think it’s only fair to your loyal readers that you provide us with a picture of you in a mummer’s outfit singing the macarena. Strip tease is optional, and in fact, discouraged.

  2. #2 by Dave on October 15, 2012 - 8:45 pm

    You should have totally done it in a Cockney Accent, “ew ‘ill ere in innerview, gov’nah”. That would have been awesome!

    • #3 by Damien Galeone on October 15, 2012 - 9:08 pm

      I did, Dave. In other news, I might need a job in a few weeks. ha

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