Every Monday, Paula Light, with her The Monday Peeve prompt, gives us an opportunity to vent or rant about something that pisses us off. My peeve today is about my hearing.
Actually, there is some good news mixed in with the bad news. The good news is that more than two years after losing my sense of taste as an unintended consequence of ear surgery, it seems to be starting to return. I am actually beginning to taste food again. Hooray!!
The bad news, and what my peeve is about, is my hearing. I lost the hearing in my left ear when a growth was removed from my middle ear at that surgery that caused me to lose my sense of taste. The growth in my middle ear had eaten the tiny bones that connect the ear drum to the inner ear, which is the mechanism that converts sound waves into actual sounds. So I’ve been deaf in my left ear for more than two years.
I bought a set of noise cancelling, Bluetooth headphones to use while my wife and I are watching TV together because, in order for me to hear the sound, the TV speaker volume was too loud for her. These headphones enabled me to hear the TV without blowing my wife out of the room and worked great over the past two years. But a few weeks ago, the sound coming from the right earpiece began to sound muffled to the point where the dialogue was so muddy-sounding that I couldn’t make out what was being said.
I thought the issue was with my headphones, so I contacted the manufacturer and they promptly sent me replacement headphones. And that was when my worst fear was realized. It wasn’t the headphones, it was my hearing. Fuck! It seems I’m losing the hearing in my right ear. Both spoken word and music sound muffled with or without headphones.
I decided to try other brands of headphones. I ordered a pair from Amazon, but had to return them because they were on-ear, and not over-the ear, and didn’t have noise cancelling capability, so when I watched TV, it felt like I was in an echo chamber, hearing the sound coming through my headphones, but a millisecond later, hearing the sound — at a lower volume — coming from the TV speakers. Ugh.
Then I decided to spend more money and I bought a pair of relatively expensive Beats headphones. Here’s my comment that I posted on Amazon:
These headphones are beautiful, comfortable, well-built, and I really wanted to love them. They paired perfectly with my iPhone, but when I tried to pair them with my Samsung 65” HDTV, the Samsung TV couldn’t find them. I tried multiple times and the Beats headphones didn’t show up on the list of Bluetooth devices on the TV. I spent an entire afternoon on the phone with Beats (Apple) support and with Samsung support, but neither support team was able to figure out how to pair the headphones to the TV. So, regrettably, I’m returning them.
I figured the third time might be a charm, so I ordered another brand of headphones, the Soundcore Q30 Hybrid Active Noise Cancelling headphones. Good news is that they easily paired with my TV. Better news is that it comes with an an iPhone app that has an equalizer functionality built in. This allows me to lower the base sounds and raise the treble sounds, making it so I can actually hear clear, crisp dialogue that is un-muffled out of my right ear. Yay!
But the trouble is that when I take off the headphones, I still can’t hear at all from my left ear and the hearing from my right ear is muddy, to the point that I’m constantly saying “What did you say?” or “Say again” to my wife. And she’s getting very annoyed about that. I may have to admit that it’s time to get some hearing aids.
Anyway, this is my Monday peeve. Sorry this post is so long.