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What do songs on the loop do to your mind?

It gets you to stop listening to them. I started with listening to a new album today afternoon while getting ready for school. A shower round of songs, one while making my hair and finally while waiting for bus. That’s it. The death of the song is going to happen soon. Another round of the same album in the MRT, and you’re hating your eardrums, your persistence on keeping them on the loop steers your brain in negating other thoughts, the songs stick to the lining of your larynx, and the humming of your brain. Bam! It is stuck on your mind.

Stuck for the next one week. It will irate you to the extent that you scold yourself every time the tune plays in your mind. While folding sheets, while tying shoe laces, while finding food in the refrigerator (as in the case of most grad school students), while looking for new songs to listen! It will just play, it will follow you like a shadow. Every time you idle on your laptop, it hums you back to irritation. You’ll tap your feet mindlessly while sitting with a bruised elbow (like I am right now), and sing that song. You will correct yourself over the lyrics, since each word inserts itself effortlessly, like English alphabets, not a single mistake. You even synchronise dance steps if it’s a peppy number (as in my case). Man, even when writing an entire piece on it, I am listening to the same song.

So how do you get rid of this habit? You get addicted to another song. And the vicious cycle shall never end. Later on, it will become a memory for you to realise at what point in your life, you used to hum that song relentlessly, reminding you of people, situations, times you would want to visit again. Trust me, you would and wouldn’t want to lose this habit.

Mariyam Raza Haider

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A journalist by training, Mariyam Haider is a writer and performance poet in Singapore.
She is the researcher of the book The Billionaire Raj: A Journey Through India’s New Gilded Age written by James Crabtree.
Her writing has appeared in Hindustan Times, Livemint, Feminism In India, New Asian Writing and Kitaab.

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