I got some noise-cancelling earphones, expensed from work, and they add to my armor of indifference. So great. Like AC in the car and hoodies, I love the immunity from external forces that the earphones bestow. I can mute people! I hate how I can’t shut out sounds as easily as I could shut out sight. No earlids. It’s almost impossible. I would have to blast loud music to shut out noise I don’t want to hear. But now with these magical earphones, silence is a button.

It’s not true silence though. There’s a soft hiss. I can’t wear it for long because of that. Tires my ears out. It sounds like the kind of sinister frequency with which dystopian governments could mass reprogram the population.