"How many have observed that you sound like a giddy six-year-old?"

In a fit of impulsiveness, I decided not to reply to Issa's text message. Instead, I was calling her, out of an aching curiosity about how she sounds like. Sure, she's already described her voice as being lower than usual, but surely it isn't that low, right? What more can you ask from someone who's got a name as sweet-sounding as Issa? Or is it my tendency to polarize between two extremes?


Golly, it is low.

Perhaps it's just me, but whenever I think of other people - for whatever reason - I end up thinking of how they sound. Sometimes I throw in my frustrations and imagine a conversation with the people I'd otherwise never hear (except, of course, during times of drastic need). I'm not absolutely in love with my voice, which can swing from a frustrated falsetto to my copyrighted bedroom voice that I only used during a phone call on one of those late nights.

But it's amazing, though, when you end up having an idea of how someone's voice sounds like on the basis of the conversations you end up having, especially if they all happen exclusively online or through text messaging. You can sometimes couple that with the face, but ultimately it's in the words you imagine them saying. My conversations with Katia, for one, have always centered on the serious stuff - the sort of conversation you'd have with a friend's older cousin. Thus, at one point when her advice kept reverberating in my head, I imagined this homely, not-so-soft-spoken voice that was firm yet hinted at some degree of vulnerability.

Perhaps this is my frustrations going to work. I remember choosing Anna as the main female voice talent for our radio plugs because of what one of her teachers described as a "documentary voice" - and it's something that eventually worked out fine. I think I acquired the quality of sensing how someone will sound like, thanks to a million conversations, frustrated or otherwise. So, when you find me daydreaming - rarely, I must note, as it always happens in the bedroom - you should keep in mind that I'm thinking of conversations with the people who seem harmless until you meet them: the people you meet online.

Well, not exactly. Sometimes you just don't really have any expectations, and yet they turn out correctly. Lizette had this I-know-what-I'm-talking-about voice that doesn't come off as smart-alecky. Chex didn't exactly disappoint when I met her: soft-spoken and slangy, a little hint of San Francisco. For some reason, though, Samantha's voice sounded different when I met her than the first time I heard her call. Then again, I already forgot how she sounds like.

Today's little epiphany comes from Raisa. Yes, that was obvious.

Anyway, I remember this conversation when, for some reason, she ended up mentioning that she has a very girly voice. That's contrary to how I imagined it - not exactly as cool-sounding as Kelly's, something giddier and less polished, but a bit stern and a bit Las Vegas-ish. So, fine, I'll change how she "sounds" in my head. She'll sound a bit like, say, Kim, only really softer.

There comes a point, however, when you'll be given a chance to find out how things really happen. And in this case, well...

"Were you that annoying-sounding girl in high school?" I asked.

"Depends on who you ask, really," she replied. "People thought it was cute. Others told me to get my voice fixed... but I can't?"

"It is cute, but I just can't really attach it to the face," I admitted.

It was higher-pitched than expected, which leads to the ultimate downside with imagining things up: always, reality is more disappointing than fantasy. And then you find out more about the person again, and wonder if you'll be able to sleep at night, or if you'll ever bring yourself back to reality and get working with what you know.

"I always gave you this quirky, inquisitive voice," I said.

"I know it's out of place, but it's my trademark," she said. "You can't forget me now."

"A few more vlogs oughta do the trick," I retorted. "And Sara Bareilles."

And your responses...

"It is cute, but I just can't really attach it to the face,"


Blogger Katia9/15/2008     

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