Tuesday, January 13, 2009

The Sound of One Hand Slapping

Some people have laughs that I truly love. My friend Nature Boy has a great, infectious laugh as I've mentioned before, and my dad too. When those guys are laughing, you can't help but join in. Also there are certain people who don’t laugh quite so easily, so when they finally do, it's a wonderful sound. This is true of my mom, my husband and my friend Dan.

In theory I think that the sound of laughter is a beautiful thing and just as I like to believe that there are no ugly babies or kittens, until recently I have also liked to believe that are no ugly laughs.

I was wrong. There are ugly laughs.

There is a person who works in my office who has the ugliest laugh I have ever heard. I hear it all day long echoing amongst the rose and mint colored cloth cubicles, but I have never quite figured out exactly who it is. She has a laugh that grates on my last nerve and causes me stumble around my cube when I hear it, frantically reaching for my headphones and the volume control on my iPod. I need to make the horrible noise go away as quickly as possible.

Her laugh makes the laughs of Fran Drescher and Janice from Friends sound like angel choirs singing on gossamer clouds.

It's a laugh that sounds like a robotic goat is being sodomized. Only more fake.

It is a laugh that is both human and machine-like. This laugh has no joy, no inflection, and no volume control. It is a laugh that occurs often enough during my workday that I think this person must not have enough work to do. I mean, what kind of wacko finds every single thing funny enough to bleat out a disturbing cackle like that all day long? This person is either constantly laughing at really stupid shit or constantly fucking a robotic goat anus.

I just don't know. It's hard to tell.

To be fair I think her laugh must be a bad habit, or a nervous tic. At least this is what I tell myself in order to be able drum up enough sympathy to make it through the work day without shoving felt tipped markers in my ears to drown out the sound.

I think I know who this person is, but I have no proof as I have never actually seen her honking out this noise. If it's who I think it is, it's someone who you would never guess. She's a really beautiful woman with perfectly coiffed hair, impeccable make-up and a lean, yoga-toned body. At least she has that going for her because beautiful as she is, the sound of her laugh is so horrific that I think her husband must either be deaf or too depressed to ever crack a joke in her presence.

Anyhoo... it has been a long day and sometimes when I hear that lady laughing, as much as I like my job, I wish I worked from home again, far from the teeming masses.


SkylersDad said...

I see a future post about you being lead out of work in handcuffs, with your co-workers telling the police that you always seemed so nice and quiet!

Candy's daily Dandy said...

I am the youngest of five. All of us have been told that we have the most infectious laughs-ie;alone or together. Couple that with the fact that my brother is one of the funniest humans on the planet. When you get the five of us in a room together and my brother is performing,you can expect a great ab workout from being doubled over.
Some say it's better than an evening out at a comedy club.

Linka72 said...

Oh.My.God...I am so right there with you on this one.
You recall my annoying co-worker Belly?? Well he has a man giggle that will make your teeth itch.."how unmanly".
Oh! and I too have a broad in here who's laugh makes me want to crap myself..and this girl looks like a model. I guess we can't all be perfect like me huh?

CDP said...

I'm cracking up at SkylersDad's comment.

Michelle said...

I've forgotten what it's like to work in an office, with people you HAVE to be with, all day. I really don't want to go back to work! I'm laughing at SkylersDad too.

Churlita said...

I used to work with a woman who was an explosive sneezer. She would sneeze and it was so loud and obnoxious that windows shook. It had to be as annoying as that laugher you're talking about, so I know how you feel.

Gwen said...

Eep. Sorry! I think that is me and you're just able to hear me in MI because I'm so loud.

I'm also a very loud sneezer. Secretaries in our office have reported hearing me sneeze on other people's dictation tapes.

i am playing outside said...

wow. this just made my own wonderful laugh fill the computer lab that i'm in. thanks. :D

WendyB said...

Here's a laugh you wouldn't like: I think I laughed something out my nose when I saw that cat picture....and I wasn't drinking anything.

Weeping Sore said...

Yikes! The laugh you describe makes a chill at the back of my neck. It sounds worse than the evil villain cackle, after he has tied the helpless lady to the railroad tracks. Just one more de-humanizing effect of working in a cube in a rat-maze I suppose. When you can't determine the source of a sound it adds an extra dimension of creepiness.

BeckEye said...

I hate annoying laughers. I was just at a party recently and there was a girl there who had that really loud machine gun laugh that would break up everyone's conversations about every 10 minutes.

There's a girl who works in my office who does that nervous laughter bullshit ALL DAY LONG and I want to stuff a rag in her mouth. She sounds like Chumley or something.

pistols at dawn said...

I've sodomized a few robotic goats in my day, and I've got to say, it's unclear why they would add the "sounds equivalent to a metallic shrieking wraith caught in the disposal" option to those goats. Who's asking for it?

Frenchie said...

Crying over here....crying! That post was great! Nature Boy enjoyed it too. And he was laughing his good laugh out loud.

Tara said...

I worked with someone once who's laugh sounded like a goose honk. One time while I was signing off a delivery, the mailman heard her laugh and asked, "Is there something wrong with her or is that how she always sounds?" I told him it was a combination of both.

Anonymous said...

I just came across this post when I Googled ways to drown out the sounds of laughter.

I live in a DC row house, and a woman lives in the basement. She says she is a lawyer and she "works" from home, but in fact, she spends her days laughing at her television.

I seriously can't bear it anymore. And I really just don't get it. I'm generally easy to amuse, and I like television as much as (or more than) the next person, but how do you find something to laugh out loud about exactly every 30 seconds?

The funny thing (thankfully, not funny ha-ha) is that I can't even hear her television. I actually can't much of anything from her, ever. Just her loud, mirthless HA-HA-HA-HA-HAAAA!

I'm thinking about signing her up for Netflix to get a stream of sad movies delivered down there. Maybe her cry isn't as annoying.

Coaster Punchman said...

Every time I stop over here I think "why don't I read her every single day?" Of course then I answer myself, saying "because you're a lazy son of a bitch who wouldn't know to do the right thing if it hit him square in the nads" or something like that. But posts like this remind me of how especially screwed up I am to miss out on these.