Frankie Say Relax

I have been feeling kind of frazzled for nearly a year now. I have always had good days and bad, but every so often a big thing comes along and it wears me out. At the moment, I have one big thing weighing on me, and another potential thing could be on its way. I am trying not to worry about the second thing, for it may only be a blip on the radar, and there is the potential for an upside. From past experience I know that while looking at the positives I am bound to be blindsided by the negatives.

Normally, I have a support system in place when I need to talk, but I am in the process of being the support system for my support system. I am overstating the case, but I don’t want to burden those who have enough to carry.

Late last year I was perusing a website that mainly deals with geeky stuff, when I saw a mention of something called AMSR (Autonomous Sensory Meridian Response). I Googled it, since that is what one does when you want to learn stuff.

AMSR works on the idea that certain sounds can stimulate the pleasure center in the brain. I say “idea,” because there is no hard science to back up the claims as of yet. It could be a placebo or snake oil, but I was willing to give it a shot.

What ASMR videos have in common is that the host, or “artist” as they tend to refer to themself, speaks in whispers or a soft voice. I understand why this can be soothing. Who doesn’t like a calm voice telling them that everything will be okay?

*Sigmund Freud on line one.*

Along with the whispering, the artist will often make noises such as tapping or scratching. They may also crinkle paper or candy wrappers. Thankfully, there are no windchimes, since those blasted things sound like metal pipes crashing down on the highway. Kissing and lip smacking sounds are popular as well, but I will never understand the appeal of gum chewing, for that gives me a headache.

There can be an element of roleplay in ASMR. Some of the more popular ones are: eye exam, cranial nerve exam, haircuts, (for men or women) and applying makeup. I’m a winter! Who knew?

AMSR is usually fun, lighthearted fair. There are some artists that like to talk about what they bought at a discount store, and there’s the ever popular “What’s in my bag?” videos. It does sound like a David Letterman bit, but that isn’t a bad thing.

The videos I like are the ones where the artist does roleplay as a caring friend, or just has a chat about stuff. Sometimes they will talk about their favorite bands, or hobbies. I even found a couple of videos by a woman who talks about Formula 1. Yep, I’m in love.

Another ascpect I enjoy is listening to foreign languages and accents. I don’t speak any language other than English, so I have no idea what they are saying, but I love to hear them say it. That being said, I may be the only person in the world who finds a Scottish accent soothing.

I do fear that having “conversations” with people on YouTube is not healthy. I may damage my limited social skills by talking to a screen like I am Sally Sparrow. But things worked out for her.


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