Monday, August 15, 2022

THAT CAN'T BE ME

Recently we had a bad storm.  A friend called me to let me know her cordless phone was fried by a lightning strike and to only call her cell.  I thought I had dodged the bullet for I could still make and receive calls but then something strange happened. 

The next day my phone showed I had a message but when I tried to play it, all I got was beeps, scratches and a muffled rumble in the background. Oh oh, maybe that part of my machine got fried. I don't have cell service here so since I had to go to town that day anyway, I thought I'd check my answering system. When I got to Walmart, which has a strong cell signal, I was able to use my flip phone to call my number. 

I got the message and left one of my own. "Hi Patti, this is a test. Hope it comes through. Thank you. "  Yes, I am polite even to myself.

 When I got home, I learned my message came through loud and clear.  What I also learned was that, good grief, do I sound like that?

Remember the first time you actually heard your voice the way others hear you? Not the glamorized version your imagination hears in your head but what you really sound like? 

For me it was when tape recorders became popular in the 70's and I heard my voice. I was shocked. I really thought I had a sexy, throaty voice.  I had been in disbelief when someone told me I sounded like Dolly Parton.  Sadly not the singing Parton but the talking one.  Then I heard myself on tape and thought, when did I pick up an accent? Throaty, sexy---nope--- try nasal, southern and whiny. 

Well I hadn't heard myself since the shocking 70's and knew my voice had aged but I had no idea how badly till I played back the message. My goodness, that girl is sick I thought. My voice was muffled but also squeaky. That is hard to do. It cracked and I sounded like I was being choked. 

I know you are sitting there smugly knowing that isn't your case at all.  If you record your own answering message  then you already know what you sound like. But if you use the generic voice message, try calling your own phone and leave a message. Then let me know if you sound at all like you thought you did.    Hope you are pleasantly surprised. I sure wasn't. 

49 comments :

  1. Patti, we may be fooling ourselves sometimes but we're also our own worst critic. Last summer my sister played a message I left on her machine, I almost didn't understand myself I spoke so fast. When I apologized for my jibber jabber, she said what are you talking about? I was just telling Jim how you should have been on the radio. It made my day but I still can't stand the sound of my own voice! PS I just got rid of my landline last December. My answering machine was over 20 years old and in all that time, I never changed my recording. It was the one time I thought I sounded okay, so I kept it. If you had called me a few months ago you would have heard my voice from 1999! πŸ˜„ Hope you have a good week ahead, my lovely friend πŸ™‚

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    1. Doug,
      You are right, we do judge ourselves harder than anyone else would. That was interesting about your message on your sister's machine. Hey, maybe you have been grossly underselling yourself. Might be a whole new career for you on the radio or maybe a podcast? If you do, let us know

      Delete
  2. I remember Bud telling me I had a sexy voice when we talked over the phone...well, I heard my voice and think it's someone speaking in a foreign language!! He needs a hearing aid!!!!

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    1. Anni,
      Isn't it almost like another person is speaking?? However if it is sexy to him, that is all that counts.

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  3. Got to this line: I know you are sitting there smugly knowing that isn't your case at all.
    Yep! Exactly what Was going through my mindπŸ˜‚πŸ˜‚I will have to try this and my next emoji will no doubt be crying face.

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    1. Olga,
      Ha ha, I really hope you are pleasantly surprised. Different is not always bad.

      Delete
  4. When I hear my own voice it sounds just like my sister's voice! It was quite a shock since I didn't realize we sounded so similar. :-)

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    1. Djan,
      That is interesting. Does you sister notice it also??

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  5. I hadn't thought about it but when I do hear my voice on the answering machine it sounds much higher than I think it should. I always think my voice is deeper than it is. On the answering machine I sound almost squeaky (LOL Not really squeaky!), I blame it on the ancient machine.

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    1. Robin,
      Me too on deeper. Our mouths are only inches from our ears--why the difference?

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  6. It's my wife's voice on the answering machine. But now that you mention it, I think I will NOT call and leave a message. I'd like to keep my illusions!

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    1. Tom,
      That might be a smart move that I wish I had taken. I was content with my 70's illusions.

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  7. Haha. I am with Tom. I want to keep my illusions...or delusions!

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    1. gigi,
      You and Tom have the right idea. Somethings are not always best known:)

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  8. My voice as changed a lot since I was young. It's cracks and generally sounds as old as Moses.

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    1. Jean,
      Age does a number on us doesn't it? Can't remember the last time a caller asked to speak to my mother. They all ready know they have the oldest human in the house.

      Delete
  9. Like you, it was the 1970's when I learned my voice doesn't sound like it does in my head. I've heard it once or twice since then and it still doesn't. :)
    I think we all think our voices sound deeper than they really are so it sounds like squeaking, even though it likely isn't.
    Apparently I sound like my mother, and my daughter and I sound alike too. At least according to friends and family.

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    1. Eileen,
      Wasn't that a shock in the seventies? Did you ever sing into a recorder at that time and realize that you should never sing again? It seems your Mom passed on the voice genes.

      Delete
  10. My daughters tend to always leave me voice messages from their phones rather than text messages, so I thought I should do the same. I made the mistake of listening back to what I said. God who is that?? I was shocked that I so rarely come up for air and almost talk without taking a breath. Why I have no idea, but its not nice to listen to!

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    1. Joey,
      You probably do like I do and try to put a lot in a small time space. I almost feel like I am timed and it will shut off before I finish. I have had them run out of space before on me.

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  11. I hope that message went through okay?

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  12. Well Dolly, I mean, Patti -- that was an especially entertaining post! Good descriptions make the reader see things. In yours, I could also 'hear' your voice and it was charmingly full of character.

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    1. Florence,
      Ha ha, smiling at the Dolly reference. I hope I have outgrown that. I tend to unconsciously pick up accents when in an area with heavy ones.
      Thanks, I like your version of my voice much better than what I hear:)

      Delete
  13. This is so true, Patti! We think we sound a certain way and then we don't. I hate my voice on tape; I sound like a man. I have a deep voice!

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    1. Margaret,
      Don't feel badly. I don't know of too many people who like hearing their voice on tape. We seem to get a different version in our ears during conversation.

      Delete
  14. I don't think my voice sounds old yet, but then I may be afraid to try this and find out.

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    1. Linda,
      Since we hear it everyday we don't notice changes. Might be smart to ignore this challenge. I wish I had.

      Delete
  15. My voice is so bad: when I was singing a lullaby to my then 2-year old son, while rocking him, he reached up to my lips with his hand, covered my mouth and said, "Stop." Broke my heart, but I knew I didn't sing well. Humming was ok. Linda in Kansas

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    1. Linda,
      Oh my was he a harsh little critic:) I didn't know I couldn't sing till my ex-husband on our honeymoon had to pull the car off the road cause he as laughing so hard at my singing along with the radio. Sigh-- I understand:)

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  16. I don't need to record myself. Me and both daughters all sound exactly alike on the phone.

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    1. River,
      You evidently passed on strong voice genes.

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  17. I am always shocked by my southern accent.

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  18. I have nothing to record my voice on since we no longer have a recorder or a land line. But I think I've heard my voice before and it sounds very much like my cousins... which is New Orleans, southern, and nasal...

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    1. Rian,
      Welcome to the southern and nasal club. I'm beginning to think we aren't too exclusive:)

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  19. Replies
    1. Linda,
      It can be a bit of a shock so perhaps it is best if you don't. The old saying is "what we don't know can't hurt us."

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  20. Oh gosh. I'm afraid to try. I love that you sound like Dolly Parton though. I haven't heard myself in years and years and years. Spoooky.

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    1. Kay,
      It can be an eye opener. Maybe best to stay in the dark. That Dolly reference was in my younger years and referred to my accent which I had no idea I had.

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    2. But I LOVE Dolly's accent. :-)

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  21. I adjusted to the sound of my voice years ago and it hasn't changed that much. It was a shock and not as pleasing a quality to my ears as I thought it was when I first recorded it on our college radio station. During the years i lived in the south I, surprisingly to me, did unconsciously pick up enough of a southern accent that when we moved back north people there noticed. If I still have that accent I don't hear it, but then I never did so it must have been very slight and maybe only on some few sounds or words.

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    1. Joared,
      I am like you with the accent. It was never a conscious effort. I didn't notice in the short message if I still have it. Not sure I want to know:)

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  22. Dear Patti, your discovery doesn't surprise me. I've become so aware that my voice is no longer young and spright. It sounds like an echo chamber in a rotten log! Peace.

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    1. Dee,
      You know that describes me a bit also:) Aren't we lucky?

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  23. Dear Patti, forgot to sign my message. From Dee, the rotten log speaker!

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    1. Dee,
      Thanks but I always recognize your style of comment.

      Delete
  24. Damn it, now I need to hear myself. I don't know if I want to find another damn sign of this old age shit!

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    1. Peg,
      Think you will be surprised at how you sound but pretty sure you are too young to notice any aging effects. Isn't it nice that there is always someone who thinks you are still a puppy?:)

      Delete

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