25 June 2005

What'd you say?

After graduation from High School, my Dad helped me get a job with a construction company that was clearing the right of way for a high tension electrical power line. At this job, I operated a chain saw.

In order to derive the most power from their saws, this company routinely removed the mufflers from them.

I would come home from the job with a ringing in my ears. When I mentioned this to my folks, their comment was "your ears will soon acclimate to the noise."

I don't blame them........only a few years before, Chesterfield cigarettes were advertised as "The Healthy Smoke", and we believed that too. My folks just didn't know any better.

When I started flying turbine helicopters, (Hueys), my instructor pitched me a set of earplugs and said, "I will not allow you to fly with me unless you are wearing those!" To this day I am grateful to CW2 Bailey for that rule!

Contemporaries of mine with similar flight time in their logbooks cannot hear the telephone ring. My hearing is now beginning to fail me, but I truly believe much of my problem stems from the scar tissue caused by the muffler-less chain saws!

I keep yellow foam earplugs at our home, and will not allow Big Bubba to mow the lawn without them. He also takes them to concerts, just in case they play their music at the threshold of pain. (Kids in cars going "whumpa, whumpa, whumpa" down the road will be saying "HUH?" by the time they are 50!)

If you or a loved one is exposed to loud noise, or even moderate noise over an extended period of time.........get yourself some "mickey mouse ears", or some foam earplugs, or both.

When you can still hear your grandkids and great-grandkids talk to you, you'll be glad you did!

1 comment:

medicmom said...

Sometimes I wonder if my hearing has diminished after 11 years of repetative exposure to ambulance sirens because I say "huh" all the time. Or it could be from all the rock concerts that I attended growing up. I remember this one concert, we were so close that we could feel the wind coming from the huge speakers with each beat of the drums.

If only I'd known......