Invasion of the Giant Earworms


"Don't turn around..."

...said the email subject in my Inbox from a very familiar address. It was a former coworker-- we'll call him Sid-- who's a good friend I hadn't heard from in a while, and one I really miss hanging out with.

Sid is the guy who always knew all the same stupid movie quotes I did, and always uncovered the best and weirdest websites. He introduced me to P.G. Wodehouse through books on CD. He was forever naming and renaming the band he played in. And he never, ever turned down the opportunity to go get a soft pretzel.

The rather paranoia-inspiring title of the email, though, made me promptly look over my shoulder with some bewilderment-- half-expecting to see Sid there text-messaging with a maniacal grin.

Or, you know, some Scream-inspired serial killer.

But there was neither. Just an empty doorway.

I turned back to my email, frowning, clicking the message open which went on to say:

"....Der Kommissar's in town."

And I cursed...

Ten points for Sid-- a goose-egg for the home team.

You see, not only is the 80s song, Der Kommissar, one of the most sly earworms out there on the planet, but for possibly six years now, Sid and I have been volleying this song back and forth in a music-oriented running joke/friendly competition.

I had let my guard down under the silly misapprehension that being separated by miles and employment would prevent the further passing of this nibbling Parasite o' Sound. But alas! Sid figured out the loophole...

Email.

There had been other songs, of course. "Copacabana," for one. "Istanbul, Constantinople" for another. And, why, once we even both suffered-- due to third-party involvement-- when one summer, a construction crew working on the building roof entreated us to an excruciating, whistling, three-measure repetition of the theme to "Annie."

Let me tell you, three weeks of eight-hour intervals of, "The sun will come out tomorrow, tomorrow, tomorrow..." whistled in a loop while some unseen worker worked-- well it was almost enough to put us all in Western Psychiatric.

But "Der Kommissar" was the big one. It would get so integrated into my head while I worked, that every time I'd open up a new Excel spreadsheet and my computer would make that "WHAP" noise, I'd even get a bit of a rhythm going.

Click-WHAP
Click-WHAP
Don't turnaround, uh-uh-no!
WHAP
Click-WHAP
Der komissar's in town, uh-uh-no!
WHAP
Click-WHAP


And now it's been officially running through my head for...(looking at the clock and calculating)... two days.

Even last night, as I rested my head on Der Pillow, "Der Kommissar" and Falco and "Jill and Joe and all my funky friends" were there, just singing away, happy as can be, while I told them all to shut up and go to sleep-- in both English AND German versions.

So, as Bugs Bunny would say, "You realize, this means war."

And unlike this week's practical joke on Kitty, I will bide my time. OH, how I will bide my time.

Because when it comes to sending out e-cards at Christmastime to my online friends, Santa Claus may very well be coming to town for some, but "Der Kommissar" is sure as heck coming down the chimney at Sid's house.

------------------------------------

Humor-blogs knows all the words to "Der Kommissar" but can't carry a tune in a bucket.

12 comments:

Alice said...

I'm immediately sending an e-mail to my brother like that.

You need to get those musical cards where you can do your own recording and send it to him!

Jane @ Kidzarama said...

Sounds like you've got some serious plotting to do...

Jenn Thorson said...

Alice- Heh, you'll have to let me know what comes of it. (Insert maniacal laughter here.) I like to think that even if I can't get Sid back now, at least I've passed on the Der Kommissar earworm to the masses. :)

I like the musical card idea. That would be ideal!

Jane- Yes, indeed... I am biding my time, and there will be payback. Oh yes. :)

Da Old Man said...

That made my ears hurt and my eyes bleed. How did I miss that in the 80's?

Oh yeah, I was drunk most of the 80's. Until today, I always thought I made a mistake missing so much of the decade due to beer and strip joints. Today, I am grateful. Thank you.

Jenn Thorson said...

Da Old Man- Ah, yes, sometimes having satisfaction in knowing what you narrowly missed is a blessing. :)

Dr. Rob said...

Loved Der Kommissar. I still consider the 80s modern rock. Interesting eye worm art. Is it yours?

Jenn Thorson said...

Yup, I try to do my own graphics to avoid copyright issues. I do them through using shapes and shading in Microsoft Word. It's not the most sophisticated way of doing it, but it's easy enough and is cleaner than if I drew it by hand and colored it in.

kdawg68 said...

once we even both suffered-- due to third-party involvement-- when one summer, a construction crew working on the building roof entreated us to an excruciating, whistling, three-measure repetition of the theme to "Annie."

^^^Oh my god! I had no idea how much suffering was in your past, Jen. Suffice to say I have a newfound appreciation for what you've been through. :)

While reading this I kept remembering how "Give Me All Your Lovin'" by ZZ Top was apparently blaring from a passing by car stereo while my wife and I exchanged vows.

Jenn Thorson said...

Kdawg- Hey, thanks for the kind sympathy. That construction guy has no idea how close he came to having office supplies lobbed at him. :)

Nothing says true romance like ZZTop. :)

Da Old Man said...

Ok, what is up with this video? I saw it on another blog last night.

It's not right. That makes twice in my life I saw it, and that is 2 times too many.

Jenn Thorson said...

Da Old Man- I have no idea. Just strange things afoot in the universe, I guess, Joe.

Or maybe it's following you.

Or MAYBE my friend happened at the blog of which you speak, which prompted him to email ME, which prompted my post. And it's all some big Falco-related form of synchronicity. :)

Or maybe my post prompted that other blogger's post because I've passed the earworm along and...

Da Old Man said...

I'm afraid. Very afraid.