Multicoloured Noise


There’s a type of spider that, after having sex, the female will kill the male. I have a feeling she also eats him, but that could just be the sleep deprivation talking.

I’m not saying that’s a good thing. But I am saying that the female spider almost definitely wasn’t kept awake by the snores of her sexually satisfied friend.

I spoke to my beloved before writing this post. I explained that I felt it was my civic duty to write about snoring. She replied in the affirmative, with a trail of drool glistening on her chin, while making noises like a bathtub emptying.

While she 100% gave me the OK to write about her nocturnal dinosaur calls, I have a feeling my beautiful beloved maybe doesn’t know quite how loud she is. I’ve recorded her on several occasions. One such occasion was early this year – the morning after New Years Eve – however the recording was discarded after I realised that every occupant of the house had heard her. Every. Single. Occupant.


My interactions with snorers started with my mother. That woman could swing a sleep chainsaw like her life depended on it. It was night after night of hearing sounds akin to the bed sheets being ripped in half with every inhalation and exhalation. It took me some time to realise that these noises weren’t intentional. I’d start every day feeling so totally pissed off that she could pretend to look so well rested when in reality she’d been timing those noises to coincide with my drifting off. Every single time.

I learned how best I could cope with the sounds of my mum’s snoring: white noise. By having a fan on, or some very quiet music playing, I could tune out the snores and get a decent night of sleep. I mastered the skill, promptly forgot about snoring, and went on to lead a relatively happy life.

And then my flatmate had her family come to stay.

I slept on the couch so that her elderly dad and step-mum could be comfortable on my bed.

What a mistake.

It started somewhat benignly: The slightly more than gentle snuffles from my flatmate were soon drowned out by the bear her father had smuggled in to our home. The bear growled and snorted until it awoke the pterodactyl that her step-mum had hidden under hat. It was this zoo-like atmosphere that helped me to understand the true meaning of the phrase “sound asleep”.

Many giggles and apologies later, I continued on my merry way.

And then I met my beloved. A beautiful soul with a great big heart. A woman that treats me with respect and has taught me that I am worth making an effort for. A woman who thinks of me often.

A woman who has a jet plane tucked into each nostril, ready to shoot down the runway the second she shuts her eyes.

Oh my god.

The first time I heard these noises coming out of my beloved, I found myself wondering if she needed help, or at least a little first aid. The next time, I checked under the bed. I couldn’t believe that she was able to produce such a cacophony of decibels. The next morning, I explained to her that I sleep best with white noise: we added music to the mix of her chortles and bubbles. It didn’t work.

I discovered that proximity is relevant when trying to introduce a white noise to drown out the bellows of outrageous fortune.

We turned the fan on, and I assured her that the gentle hum would be for the best.

I learned that when someone is shivering, their snores take on a staggered effect. I found myself longing for her to develop sleep apnoea, so that there would at least be gaps between the snores when she stopped breathing. I laughed a little too loudly and for a little too long when I heard comedian Mandy Nolan say “In every relationship, there are two people: the snorer, and the person whose life is being torn apart by the snorer”. I tossed and turned while she inhaled passing freight trains and exhaled lawn mowers.

And then it happened.

One night, she didn’t snore.

I poked her: no response. I gave her a kick. She mumbled at me. She was alive… but where was the snoring?

I didn’t sleep well that night.

I puzzled about this for several days. Then I finally came to the conclusion: I had grown so accustomed to her snoring that her toots and creaks and groans had become my white noise!

There are still moments when I am gobsmacked by her noises. But chances are, she is somewhat intimidated by the sounds my own body can produce.

I tend to think that when they become your white noise of choice? You’re possibly onto a good thing.



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