Celebrities trade on their famousness. It’s a commodity of recognition easily monetized courtesy of the endorsement market and the underlying calculus often plays out like this: “Me like that person. If me imitate, me become like them. Then happy.”
Now, let’s cut to the idea of where Ambien’s magic ends, and white noise sleep-inducing sounds begin. At the intersection of sleep aids and insomnia is where celebrities’ agents (who get 10% of their client spoils) see an opportunity to interpose their client’s good name between the desperate need for sleep and white background noises designed to promote glorious slumber. So an unlikely marketing scheme is hatched: White Background Noises created by celebrities for their adoring civilian fans. It’s a match made in Tinsel Town heaven. It’s a kind of fan fiction for the fatuous.
However well-intentioned this scam was, clinical sleep studies with zealous fans proved that not all celebrity white noises were found to be soporific. Far from the sleep-inducing mantras hoped for, some of these narcotizing sound bites, bit back and inadvertently activated the arousal response in sleepy males test subjects – especially when they heard a loop of sultry-voiced Angelina Jolie cooing “What are you wearing.” After this unintentional “ear porn” the sleep-deprived males perked right up and snoozing somehow didn’t seem so important. This and other streams of counterproductive white background noises were excluded from the app, but they can be heard on bootleg versions of the app found on YouTube.
So even though it’s 4 in the morning (in Darwin, Australia, not here in Reno where I am), I’m pleased to present:
Top 10 Rejected White Noise Sleep Sounds created by celebrities for sleepless fans:
- A loop of Tom Petty admitting to the people of Syria, “Well, maybe you do have to live like a refugee”
- An endless loop of Steve Perry just singing the “Don’t Stop” part
- Misty morning rain…bouncing off Tatum Channing’s abs or was it Channing Tatum’s pecs. Or maybe it was Carol Channing’s cheeks or Tatum O’Neal’s teeth. The point is it involved rain, a celebrity body part and it was rejected.
- The continuous sound of Tim McGraw and Faith Hill’s boots knocking
- The repeated tooting of an “aah-oo-ga” horn…as blown by Monica Lewinsky
- Morgan Freeman intoning, “My, my, my.” (Apparently the dissonance of a black man making white noise caused subjects to grow bewildered instead of sleepy.)
- Yoko Ono imitating an air raid siren
- The soothing and secretive “hiss” of Tom Brady deflating a football
- The sound of Tina Turner privately dancing
- Marcel Marceau miming the words to “The Sound of Silence”
Oh, We’re Not Done Yet
And, in keeping with growing the $20 billion sleep deprivation relief market, Apple has announced:
A New White Noise Sleep App for Weirdos:
Background White noises designed to promote deep & restful sleep in the Loosely Wrapped. These unusual noises seem counterintuitive to facilitating sleep, but they’ve been proven to work in clinical studies (if you’re a little damaged).
- Endless loop of Oktoberfest Burping
- A soothing recording of a woman continuously saying, “The Sandman will see you now.”
- Repeated sound of a cat scrambling to get out of a bathtub with 2” of water in it
- The piercing “zip” of duct tape being unfurled from its roll.
- For the Zen sleeper: The sound of one hand clapping
- Doppler-shifted instructions of a flight attendant screaming, “In the unlikely event of a water landing…”
- A cacophony of very moist chewing
- A succession of watermelons dropped from 7 stories
- A succession of 7 stories dropped from a library
- Cute kid mispronouncing the word library as “libary” – puts you right out (if you’re weird)
- Ugly guy mispronouncing February as “Febuary”; and no I don’t know how you’d know he was ugly if it’s just an audio recording. I don’t even know whether or not he’s transgendered. This is just a stupid list I made up before bed, so give me a break before you get all judgey.
- A guy saying over and over, “Y’know the app sucks, but the list is kinda funny.”
Good night everyone. Everybody everywhere. Sleep tight, but not too tight.