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The shoes I wore yesterday now have a huge hole on one side. The shoes I wore to work today developed an enormous gash across one sole one way in this morning. I now have no functioning work shoes apart from the boots, and it's a bit warm for those.
A colleague is now playing the latest Madonna album with those mysterious headphones that broadcast out, not just into the ear. What has happened to headphones? The old ones, in the walkman days, with the headband and the foam earpieces, never did this. Those terrible white ipod ones feel like nails driven into the eardrum and and are clearly audible, especially in trains and lifts.
How is one to deal with this? Do you turn, polite and puzzled to the person and pretend it's all just an accident?
"Um, I think your headphones have started broadcasting outwards."
Or do you just exchange small smiles with the other people in the lift - this person has no idea that we can all hear Natalie Imbruglia shrieking "AND YOU'RE DOWN ON YOUR KNEES" into his 45 year old boffin head?
The headphones my work mate is using look like silver ping pong balls cut in half and sort of loop over his ears. I think the key must be foam over the ear piece. I also have a pair of loopy over the ears headphones, but with foam. Foam in not cool, obviously. Hard metal against delicate sensory organs is cool, and I am not cool, and I got mine from K-mart and they work very well. Maybe I'm paranoid, but I do actually test them occasionally, by putting the music on, then putting the headphones on my teddy bear and checking that I can't hear anything. I don't want people giggling about me on the train on the days I decide to swoon to Frank Sinatra on the way home.

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