Sounds Like ???

I remain enthralled with this fresh notion of a human-made device sitting on the surface of a rubber-duck-shaped comet that is speeding towards the sun.

Scientists are examining the data collected by the lander Philae before it ran out of power a few hours after touch (and re-re-touch) down. One beguiling piece of information turns out to be the sound the device made when it hit. Apparently there is a lot you can learn from such a thing.

Just by analyzing the sound above, scientists can judge the composition of the comet’s surface. They know that the lander encountered a soft layer several centimeters thick, and the next layer was hard. Researchers also know that Philae bounced a couple of times.

That’s a lot to learn from a momentary crunch.

Inspired by the ability of attentive listeners (aided by scientific equipment) to paint a picture of the actors in a scene from a tiny bit of sonic evidence, I created a document to give researchers from the future something to chew on when considering the meaning of my all-too-brief mission on this planet.

Tooth angle, overbite, jaw strength, lip density, saliva viscosity and tongue thickness are just a few of the qualities that I’m sure can be extrapolated with the right devices. Not that anyone would want to.

And imagine what they might be able to learn about the comet I’m biting!

What is your most distinctive sound?

33 thoughts on “Sounds Like ???”

  1. Philae’s landing crunch sounds to me almost like somebody dropping a stick on to concrete. It’s amazing how much information can be extracted from this sort of data, of course. And it’s been – and remains – a stunning achievement to land on it at all.


  2. I am a sound freak. Every since I was a kid sounds affect me. Ice crunching and chip chewing turn me into an enraged lunatic. I can’t stay in the room with someone who is chewing. My shoulders tense my brain shuts down I can’t think function or carry on an im station of a human being while crunching is going on
    Sounds are a part of my world


    1. I feel your pain. Husband loves crunchy foods, and I can’t stand the noise. Do you bite your nails? I have all my life and I think it is somehow related to my issue with crunching and chewing.


      1. i had the most beautiful nails on the planet growing up. when they would get too long i would chew them off and file them on the seam on the side of my jeans. i played classical guitar and had the nails filed at the odd angel that classical guitarists care about for a couple of years and all went along fine until i quit smoking 10 or so years ago and the nails disappeared overnight. i cant keep the damn things out of my mouth (think i may have an oral fixation) i tell my self i willl let them grow but so far they are to the nubs. no little toenail part to stick the nail file under. i can file it to get the rough edges off in the corners but there is no nail to deal with. every now and again i think about straighteneing out that aspect of my disfunction but it feels kind of like a celebration of not smoking 3 packs a day anymore. ill take neurotic nails over that scumbag habbit anytime


  3. Good morning. I can’t think of any very remarkable sound that I make. I am a noisy eater. I suppose I do make some distinctive or, perhaps, disgusting sounds when I eat. If the sound that I make eating an apple was recorded, it probably would be louder than the apple eating sound that Dale documented. I tend to get carried away when eating resulting in loud chewing sounds. A study of the sounds I make while eating might give many clues about the kinds of food I eat.


  4. Got called for a voiceover gig yesterday (YAY!). Don’t everyone panic…it was for an online training module. After I read the first slide’s script, the owner of the studio said that I had a ‘Mormon Tabernacle Choir’ quality to my voice. I don’t know if he said that just to keep the talent happy but I took it as a compliment.

    Liked by 4 people

  5. Have I showed any of you my “sick chicken” imitation? First I get into character, and then it’s a drawn-out baawwk that sort of peters out at the end, and… I guess it’s pretty hard to describe – you kind of have to be there. I wish I could remember how it got started, but I used to drive my son crazy with it.

    Liked by 1 person

  6. “saliva viscosity” this early in the morning…. ew. If you have a signature sound, would you know it? Not sure I have one…..


  7. If the question refers to all the unintended noises I make–all the coughs, farts, stomach growls, snores and other spontaneous noises–I refuse to go there. I just won’t.

    But there is a distinctive noise I can make that makes my grandson’s face light up like a Christmas tree. It is my Donald Duck” voice. It involves exhaling through one side of my jaw while changing mouth shapes to make the noise resemble speech. I had a friend who could do what she called her Minnie Mouse voice, a comic voice that was clear and comprehensible. When she recited the Gettysburg Address in that voice you recognized every word even while you lay on the floor laughing yourself to tears. My Donald Duck voice is far less articulate. I usually confine myself to “Oh boy!”

    Several years ago I photographed six weddings as a sort of guest of my photographer friends Pat and Margie. Wedding photography is extremely difficult, for you have to shoot well at a furious pace, capturing all those magic moments that will happen once and will never happen again. The photographer is the outsider recording an intimate and complex event starring people who are affectionate friends. The photographer shoots maybe three images a minute for eight hours, hoping to capture the magic of the moment. Somehow the photographer must be able to control all the wedding participants whom they do not know to get them to pose. And wedding participants don’t always pay attention. They are distracted, having a great time, and . . . to tell the truth . . . often pretty drunk.

    To make things even harder, my friend Margie is an extreme introvert who doesn’t like to speak up in public, let alone bark at wedding guests to get them to stand close together, look into the camera and smile.

    At a wedding we shot at The Landing, that historic site along the Minnesota River. Margie was trying to get a dozen people to pose before the light went bad. But they were giggling, full of champagne. Suddenly Donald Duck–me–roared at them and commanded them to pay attention. Margie was astounded. The inebriated guests were astounded, but they suddenly shaped up and posed. The person most astonished was Donald Duck himself . . . me.

    Liked by 3 people

    1. My dad could do the Donald Duck voice as well. I could never figure out how to make that sound myself. Nor the loon call that he was good at…


  8. Thanks for naming a vehicle for me yesterday. I am touched by your thoughtfulness! And it sounds like a vehicle I would love to have. The bread baking part too; need to do that today or tomorrow…

    My Dad could whistle extremely loud without using his fingers. I’ve never been able to do it and I’ve been trying to learn for years. He’d quiet down a room and get everyones attention just like that! [snapping my fingers]. The special part was that he didn’t need his fingers like everyone else does. Wish I could do that. Still practicing.

    I can yell loudly. It’s that special ‘use your diaphragm / calling-the-cows-home voice’. The other night I quieted down a rowdy group of college students onstage by yelling from the booth. Well, everyone except the drummer. But everyone knows you can’t tell a drummer anything…

    Liked by 4 people

  9. I do have one that I try hard not to make. I know it irks Sandy. It’s pain moans, which I do often. It is an autonomic response, I guess, because I keep doing it.


  10. One of my grandmothers was a character. She had a thousand quirks, including the fact she wore tall high heel shoes every minute of the day (which had something to do with the fact she was barely five feet tall). She was a nervous cook who commanded everyone else in the kitchen and made them do things her way.

    One time my mother was about to put a pan on the fireplace but stopped in terror when her mother let out a weird kind of scream that was high pitched and loud. Did did did did did did did!!!! she screamed.

    Mom was in shock and put the pan down. When she could speak again she said, “Good lord, Mother, what was that horrible sound?”

    “Well, you stopped dead in your tracks when I said it,” said my grandmother with some evident pride. “If I had said, ‘Charmion, put that pan down’ you would have gone on doing what you were doing.”

    Liked by 1 person

  11. ln the 80s, l had a job at the YMCA crafting and running a teen outreach program. Annually, volunteer teens and l were in charge of putting on a community Halloween party. One year, we put together an impressive haunted house. My job was to hide behind its walls and let out blood-curdling screams every few minutes.

    Much to my own shock, l opened my mouth widely to scream and barely a sound came out. l tried again and again but nothing more than a soft, muffled sound emerged. l was floored and had the thought that if l were being attacked, l’d be in real trouble.

    The only reason for this scream deficit l can think of is having grown up in a home where loud voices weren’t allowed so my vocal cords had simply not had a chance to develop to full volume.


  12. Mine is a rather private noise. When I’m listening to music and not singing along (a rare occurrence), I tap the rhythm out by clicking my teeth together. Not the molars, mostly the incisors. My dentist noticed I was wearing them down so I tried to stop for a while but the old habit comes back at times.


  13. There was an upperclassman in high school who had an odd sneeze that would burst out during studyhall; I think she was trying to stifle it but not succeeding very well. She would do the “ah – ah – ah” and then end with “kiki!” very high and squeakily.


  14. Well, the delinquents do come running when I sing “suppertime for kitties”.

    I have done something to my voice as ot is often barely audible and raspy
    Still mostly have my high notes, so there is that.

    I’m sitting in as the token required adult for Robotics tonight before the first qualifying meet tomorrow. I thought I should introduce myself to the guys but are completely focussed so I’m invisible :).

    There is going to be continuous techno music. And all day tomorrow.

    I actually don’t mind that. Reminds me of college.

    Misogynistic rap-that I can’t have.

    S&h listens to none of it. I count my blessings.

    Liked by 1 person

  15. When I’m in a moment of fright, I don’t seem to able to scream or yell. Example – riding in a car with a friend when she was about to proceed into an intersection, for a right turn, looking to the left to gauge the speed of the traffic coming from the left, completely missing the fact that there was a pedestrian right in front of the car. I should be able to yell “STOP” at full volume. All I can mange is a panicked gasp. I am absolutely useless in an emergency.


    1. daughter was driving home (with permit) at the end of a perormance with pedestrians hunched up in the cold crossing in the dark in front of us hurriedly and cold with their hands in their pockets. she was looking at the car to the left waiting to turn right into our parking lot when the walkers cleared and the one straight ahead and they both cleared the intersection and she was waiting waiting and then ready to go with car on the right going unnoticed as she moved her foot off the brake and switched to the stomp it mode to make a quick spurt through the hole in the traffic to uncork the push of the traffic from behind that was building as the intersection. i saw it pre and readied myself without sayng anything ubntil it was time to sound the alert. umcagablishrala is what came out with a heavy leaning toward the exclaimation point end of the statement. she stopped and knew she had missed a key element of the excersize. we got home ok and my lack of being prepared to ennunciate the car approaching from the right has the right of way darlin please make note of its approach was trumped by the urgent grunt of parental disapproval in that universal language of timeless fatherly bellowing

      Liked by 1 person

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