Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Whistle while you work

All my life I've believed that I can't read and listen to music at the same time. And since I read and write (and rant) all day long at work, I naturally assumed I couldn't listen to music at work either.

But brothers and sisters I am here to tell you: THE IPOD CHANGED MY LIFE.

Steven Jobs is thrilled. I can hear him say, "Boys, we just got us another addict. Break out the blender, it's margarita time!"

And iTunes is my new best friend. My life now has a soundtrack. Hallelujah, praise Allah (I mean Apple).

But now comes the hard part.

Which music goes with which activity? Bach for preparing budgets? Is Coldplay conducive to coding HTML? Enya for endless emailing?

Help me (Rhonda). I need options and your suggestions.

Thanks Jason for getting me thinking about this.


Jason said...

I've just recently started using my iPod when trying to focus on tasks like writing and editing, and I've been surprised to find that it works.

Not sure exactly goes with which task, but the things that seem best for me are those that work as background music... nothing too heavy, nothing with intense lyrics.

Consider The Thrills, the lovely Brigid Kaelin, David Mead, Imogen Heap, Hanson (that's just to see if the doctor is reading this), Luna, the Old 97s, R.E.M., Son Volt, and the Velvet Underground.

If you need to yell at someone, try some Iggy Pop or Patti Smith to get yourself worked up into a frenzy!

Martha said...

Hee! Funny stuff here!

And may I also shamelessly recommend that you can also have a heckuva lot of fun sticking our show onto your iPod by going to
and downloading an hour of laughs about language with the Verbivores!

(Thanks very much for the link, D!)

dottcomments said...

Martha Martha Martha!

I am a happy subscriber of your podcast and am just trying to get up enough nerve to call in to your show to complain about those folks who say "wreck havoc" and "hard road to hold."

Welcome to Dottcomments comments (is there an echo in here?) and please come again.

Steve Caratzas said...

My musical lunacy has been well-documented (playlists featuring GG Allin alongside Cher, etc.), but listening to music (and simultaneously tuning the rest of the world out) while I work is a necessity.

My 1st generation iPod (yes, with actual moving wheel) recently gave up the ghost after three and a half years of faithful service. I have since acquired a new 30-gig video jobber, but during the few weeks I was without, life at the office was fairly much a wreck.

In the time it has taken me to type this comment, I have heard The Flaming Lips ("Fight Test"), Graham Parker & the Rumour ("White Honey" recorded live at the Marble Arch), and The Hues Corporation ("Rock the Boat").

Yes: variety!

Rock on with your bad self.

MsAPhillips said...

I hate to be scientific about this, but I pay attention to the speed of the song -- slower desired heartrate = soothing, faster desired heartrate = challenging/alert. So music to work out to (caffeinated music) would be something fast like me first and the gimme gimmes doing a cover of anything. And music to zone out to in a more soothing way is slower and mathematically predictable, frankly like Enya or Mozart. I actually made a CD once that was a musical version of behavioral competencies, but that's because I'm a geek.

dottcomments said...

Wow, there's so much more to this than I thought! Almost anything works while driving (why is that?).

You're right about Enya and Mozart -- I've noticed they really work for some tasks.

Later I'll do a post explaining some of my mixes and how they're working for me.