If you know me, you know I’m an NPR-aholic. I do like my music though, especially in the winter.

With such a short commute now I’m lucky to hear 2 songs before I get to work (NOT that I’m complaining). That, combined with something I thought was “just me” (which I’ll discuss in a sec), means I’ve basically listened to the same 2 or 3 cds in the car all winter now…

I’ve done an informal survey and there’s a previously undiscussed condition that I’m going to break the taboo on and discuss. Since I’m breaking the taboo I get to name it too, so I’m calling it “OCL” for Obsessive Compulsive Listening.

OCL is an order, not a disorder (I’m breaking the barrier so we play by my rules). Anyway, OCL is an order in which you listen to the same song or cd over and over.

Informal research shows it runs the gamut from playing a cd start to finish over and over, to listening to the same song over and over, so much that you might as well just burn only that song to cd, repeating it enough to fill it (or your iPod, if you’re a Pod-person).

And it’s not like you’re all CDOCL or all SOCL (Song OCL) — you can be both, which makes it harder to diagnose, and thus more fitting to me.

So for example, I’ve been CDOCL with Daniel Powter‘s debut cd,

but have also been SOCL with Yael Naim’s New Soul (the song for the commercial where they pull the new Mac out of an envelope) <– which I even downloaded and BOUGHT:

“I’m a new soul,
I came to this strange world,
Hoping I could learn a bit about how to give and take.
But since I came here,
Felt the joy and the fear,
Finding myself making every possible mistake.


I’m a young soul,
In this very strange world,
Hoping I could learn a bit about what is true and fake.
But why all this hate?
Try to communicate.
Finding trust and love is not always easy to make.



and KT Tunstall’s Other Side of the World,

“Over the sea and far away
She’s waiting like an iceberg
Waiting to change
But she’s cold inside
She wants to be like the water

The fire fades away
Most of every day
Is filled with tired excuses
But it’s too hard to say
I wish it were simple
But we give up easily
You’re close enough to see that
You’re on the other side of the world to me…”

And the beauty of OCL (as per my rules) is that you can have the same song fit every mood. So if you’re bummed out you can cry along with the words, but if you wanna roll down the windows and singing loudly on a sunny day to it, you can do that too.

All with the same song or cd. The right song or cd will meet all your needs all the time. It’s a great thing, really. That’s why it’s an ORDER, not a DISorder.

I realize this subject has been taboo for years now, so I don’t expect a lot of comments, but it’s okay. I know there are more of “us” out there than are willing to come forward at this time.

Someday we won’t be embarrassed about it, we’ll be embraced for it. Until then, “I’ll stay right here, On a silent sea, On a silent sea.”