“Three was already illegal, but how do you resist that face!” my neighbour shrugs sheepishly across the fence. I muster half a fake smile as she introduces the latest addition to her frenzied pack of yapping sausages. All I can see is my flock of slumber sheep grow by one thousand and one, one thousand and two, one thousand and three …
Does the idea of sitting close to someone in a quiet room while they crunch away enthusiastically at a fresh apple give you more anxiety than imagining a giant hairy tarantula sitting on your face? Are you driven almost literally crazy by the clanky drip drip dripping of raindrops in a steel gutter?
You might be suffering from Misophonia!
More than just a trivial annoyance, this scarcely researched condition has been described as experiencing intense feelings of disgust, anger or anxiety triggered by a variety of mundane sounds like chewing, sniffing or even breathing!
Each afternoon, just a few minutes after 4 her approach is announced by the Banshee-like shrieks of that foul four. The volume of their hysterical yelps and yowls steadily increases as her arrival becomes more and more imminent. Sonic ripples from their deafening barks are clearly visible in my 4:20 cuppa Jo as she slams her car door shut. When her keys finally break the lock, the cruel cacophony crescendos with the curiously crass caws of her neglected, caged cockatoo.