Exploring the question: Can a moustache be heard?
You’re starring in a game show. In front of you is a line of seven men, each facing you with a microphone in front. You’re blindfolded. You’ve been told that some of these men are moustachioed while some are not.
Your task: Discern the moustachioed men from the non-moustachioed based solely on their speech.
Is it possible?
I say yes, provided certain things are taken into account.
First, let’s get one thing straight: I have no idea what causes moustache-voice, but I would assume its predominantly caused by the P’s, albeit on a level we can’t consciously hear.
Moustache or No Moustache
We decided to do a test. I wasn’t believed when I claimed I could hear moustaches, so we played a game called “Moustache or No Moustache” — it was a game along the same vein as “Transcendent or Corporeal” which we played with JP Sears. Simple; effective.
As the subject, I closed my eyes as numerous videos of men speaking and singing were played to me.
The first one had barely started when I opened my eyes and yelled, “MOUSTACHE!”
My friends were amazed.
The second one started. I had to think for a moment before:
Here’s where it fell apart. I got cocky. I stopped concentrating, or rather, I started concentrating. Instead of relaxing my mind and operating on instinct, I began to treat moustache-voice as something you can hear rather than percieve. Perhaps I was simply hearing the P’s, just not consciously, but that’s the thing with us humans — as soon as we start trying to control the stuff our brain has learned to do without us, we fuck up:
Don’t drop that plate.
Don’t run out of things to say.
Don’t do a dance in front of that girl in the street (I was on acid, and I did)
Alas, the next two were wrong while one was correct, likely by chance. Another factor that polluted the research was that I began to base my answers on how old they sounded — I was stereotyping! For this reason I even answered one as “shit beard, but no moustache”. He was clean shaven. It was cocky; as cocky as a homeopath who thinks they can cure AIDS.
Towards the end I had to choose between two voices — the instinctual one telling me they had moustache-voice, and the one telling me they sounded too young to have a moustache. When it comes to detecting moustache-voice, you don’t follow your brain — you follow your heart.
You’d have a hard time convincing me of the non-existence of moustache-voice. At best, you could convince me it’s a spectrum, where some moustachioed men are high-functioning enough for it to be practically undetectable. Conversely, some shaven men have voices so gruff that you’d be entirely justified in labelling them with moustaches.
Call me an idiot for believing in moustache-voice; I’ll only respond with the religious fervor of those who say “It was not the learned Sadducees or Pharisees that understood the word of Jesus, it was the shepherds and the fishermen”. I am a fisherman and moustache-voice is my revelation; hear me O people.