Self-Help

Earworms and Chicken

When I woke up this morning my very first thought was “Love that chicken from Popeye’s”.  And the thought was set to music — and on repeat.

In reality I do not love that chicken from Popeye’s.  Or at least I think I don’t, because I’ve never even been to a Popeye’s.  I have, however, heard that Popeye’s jingle a time or 5,000 in my life, so it’s clearly imprinted somewhere in the deep dark recesses of my brain.  And theoretically it would have stayed there, but unfortunately for me my roommate sang the jingle yesterday — one time — and it’s been stuck in my head ever since.  For the record, my roommate is a vegan so she also does not actually love that chicken from Popeye’s.

But anyway, the Popeye’s jingle is my current earworm.  And possibly yours now too.  You’re welcome.

It made me wonder, how on earth can I get this damn jingle out of my head?  Sometimes when I have a song stuck in my head if I play it a couple of times it’ll go away, but these one-line earworms really burrow into my consciousness for some reason.  So I turned to the source of most of my information:  google.  (Just kidding, except in this case).

As always happens when I google something, I found about 5 million hits, some more helpful than others.  There has, of course, been much research about earworms, since it’s clearly the most pressing issue of our time.

Surveys indicated that 90% of us experience an earworm at least once a week.  The average earworm is 15-30 seconds long. Women, people constantly exposed to music, people who are super tired or stressed, and people with higher levels of neuroticism are more likely to be plagued with frequent earworms.

Scientists have even documented the song and commercial jingles most likely to be earworms,  including:  “by Mennon”,   the “weem-a-wop” part of “The Lion Sleeps Tonight”, the “baby back, baby back, baby back ribs” jingle, the “plop plop fizz fizz” jingle, the “no we will not let you go” part of “Bohemian Rhapsody” and the “rah-rah-ah-ah-ah” part of “Bad Romance”.

I don’t have scientific evidence of this one, but I think if you grew up in Chicago in the 70s and 80s it’s very likely that “588-2300 Empire” is also a frequent contender on your “most annoying earworm” lists.  Seriously, I know a total of three phone numbers by heart: my phone number from when I was in grammar school, my best friend’s cell phone, and the number for Empire Carpets.

So what do you do?  Suggestions for knocking earworms out of your brain include:

  • Chewing on a cinnamon stick or gum (no idea why, but that’s what they say)
  • Singing the Gilligan’s Island theme or “Happy Birthday” song (unless that is your original earworm)
  • Solve a tricky anagram or word puzzle to force the song out of your active memory
  • Listening to the entire song (if your earworm is part of a longer song) for at least 3 minutes to see if the earworm is really your brain trying to remember the rest of the song
  • Listen to some music
  • Passing them on to someone else (like my roommate did to me — and now I’m passing on to you!)

 

** Like this post?  Subscribe to this blog for updates on future posts, and use the social media buttons to share.  Thanks for reading!  Check out my latest book releases by visiting my Amazon author page at amazon.com/author/rosebak.

About Rose Bak

Rose Bak is a freelance writer and author who lives in the Pacific Northwest with her family and special needs dogs.   Rose writes both fiction and non-fiction in a variety of mediums. Rose specializes in the following types of writing:  blogs, self-help, romantic fiction, humor, narrative, personal finance, business, self-help, housing, domestic violence, grant writing and public administration. For more information on projects and rates, contact me at rosebakenterprises@msn.com. Visit my author page at amazon.com/author/rosebak. Follow me on social media Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/AuthorRoseBak/?modal=admin_todo_tour Twitter: https://twitter.com/AuthorRoseBak Instagram: https://www.instagram.com/author_rose_bak/ LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/rose-bak-mpa-0232b581/ All opinions expressed in this blog are solely the authors and are copyright Rose Bak.  No part of these pages can be reprinted without written permission from the author. As an Amazon Associate I earn from qualifying purchases.

0 comments on “Earworms and Chicken

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: