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I'm Not Allowed to Do That Now Either?

So, I've started seeing some really vehement criticism of people wearing headphones. I don't understand it. Wearing headphones affects your life not in the least and still you want to criticize. I know, I know. It;s the Internet, the place where all of human decency goes to die, but geez...there really are more important things to worry about than whether or not every human being on earth is at one's beck and call. It's not personal, buddy. Sometimes people simply want to get lost in their own little world.

I'll admit it. For me, sometimes it's just about not wanting people to stop me when I'm walking the Whitemare along the river. For those of you that don't know, The Whitemare is my deaf pit bull, Lulu...shortened to a far less embarrassing Lu. Lu was born deaf and, for all intents and purposes, is all white. The older she gets, the more black spots have begun to appear, but when she was a puppy, she was pure white and had a pink nose. Further, she has one bright blue eye and one brown eye with a large white spot in it. She's actually a pretty good looking dog.

OK...before I go any further, I have to do some nerd stuff for those of you out there wondering. For those of you not wondering at all, you can skip the next couple of paragraphs.......

Dogs that carry the piebald gene are often affected by deafness. Piebaldism results from a lack of melanocytes...the cells that create melanin. When a dog is born without melanocytes, the dogs will have a predominantly white coat, unpigmented skin and, in some cases, blue eyes. Following so far? OK, good.

Now, the ability to hear comes from a specialized layer of cells within the inner ear. This layer of cells comes from the same stem cell source as the melanocytes. Without these stem cells, a dog's body will be unable to make the specialized layer of cells that allows them to hear. They will also, most likely, be white in color.

Straying form the science of the whole thing a bit, yes, my dog does bark and no, I don't know if it sounds any different than any other dog's bark. I know it sounds like a really insulting thing to say, but it's a really insulting question to ask and I've actually been asked it more times than I can count..or believe. I get it when the kids ask, but when adults do, I just don't even know what to say to them.

All this brings me back to her being a really good looking dog. I'll post a picture at some point, but you can look up deaf pit bull and safely assume that whatever the results, that's what Lu looks like.

Anyway, many people want to stop and pet my dog, but it's not something I want to deal with

A: Because she is hand shy. She is a rescue and I'm pretty sure somebody cracked her a time or two. Therefore, she doesn't like people reaching for her and will back away and bark. If somebody wanted to get on the ground and let her approach, she's fine, but all of that is just way too hard to explain in the time it take for strangers to start reaching and rather than just tell them that she's not friendly, I choose to ignore people. It's easier than seeing their excited faces turn to disappointed ones.

B: Because I don't really want to engage in awkward conversation. I'm there to walk my dog. As it is it's an hour walk and that's long enough for me.

Lord almighty where was I?

Oh yes...headphones. That is one reason I wear them. The other reason is because listening to music when I walk puts a little pep in my step and keeps me from feeling as though I'm dragging ass. There's not really one type of music that I favor over any other. I grew up in a house in which you could hear anything from Barry Manilow to Steppenwolf, Benny Goodman to Cyndi Lauper. Myself, I went for the bands that were a little left of center...Culture Club, Depeche Mode, the Cure, The Cult, New Order and the like. I've gone through all the stages of musical interest...Top 40, classic rock, metal, country, early rap...really just about anything but grunge. God, how I hate grunge. Anyway, lately, I've been listening to some great female rockers, Halestorm, The Pretty Reckless, Dorothy, etc., etc., etc. but, really the only time I have to do that is either on these walks with the Whitemare or when I am in my car. When I'm home, I don't generally have music on, as it's too tough to listen to music AND concentrate on my work.

So, since we're talking about headphones and music and the like, lets make this week's clue all about the music, shall we? And I'll keep it pretty uncomplicated for you all. The only thing you have to do is figure out what all these people and groups have in common. Then, work it out from there...............................

The Rolling Stones, Van Halen, The Beatles, Elvis Presley, The Misfits, Breaking Benjamin, Avril Lavigne, Metallica, Johnny Cash, Chris Stapleton, Bob Seger and Judas Priest.

I could give you a really big hint.....buuuuut....I don't think I want to do that just yet................

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