I'm a bit less deaf today, I think, but not much. I discovered something about hearing which I expect is awfully elementary and obvious, but was a new thought for me. I can't normally do any kind of mental work, as many people do, with music playing. Not even very quietly. Not even very minimalist stuff. Not even the most twiddly, repetitive baroque. I wish I could - I expect it would make boring work less deadly and soothe my mood. I find it way too distracting. While I'm a bit deaf, though, I can - since I can hear the music less well, it distracts me less. This is clearly not just a question of volume or in the normal way of things simply turning it down would solve the problem, and it doesn't.
I have poor eyesight and good hearing. My conscious apprehension of the world is overwhelmingly visual and I'm very much aware that seeing things blurred and only seeing them in any detail close up is absolutely integral to my taste, perceptions and aesthetic, and indeed to my whole personality. I'm much less aware of the significance of hearing. I've always listened to music a lot, loving it deeply and emotionally, but in a broad and pretty ignorant way. I have almost no natural sense of pitch, little fine discrimination and a poor auditory memory. But still, acute hearing is a gift and I suppose I rely on it much more than I realise. It's just dawned on me that it's not only a matter of high sensitivity to volume and being able to distinguish very quiet sounds. It's obviously much more, a comparatively high sensitivity to frequencies, tones and subtleties that enter me on all sorts of levels. If I can work to music only when my hearing is diminished, there must be a whole range of effects I'm not getting in the way I usually do.
Perhaps I'll try to be more appreciative in future. Perhaps, too, I'll do something to amend my ignorance of the subject and what people have written about it from both scientific and subjective viewpoints. Meanwhile, I've had a long copyediting job to finish today, and just for once been able to play music while I did it.