Nerdist was started by Chris Hardwick and has grown to be a many headed beast.

Anxiety 101: SootheTube

by on September 12, 2011

Like many of my fellow nerds, I have anxiety problems, and while I’m able to manage them throughout the day with a rigid schedule of Portal 2, hot baths, exercise (ugh), and historical romance novels, when I lie down to sleep at night the panic can be overwhelming and insomnia inducing. And that is when I turn to the internet… to YouTube, to be precise. Watching videos of ladies doing their hair or showing me their collection of Nars blushes is well – mind-numbing, and that is what I need in order to stop myself from spiraling into crazy time land. Soon, however, watching beauty tutorials isn’t enough, like when you watch too much of one kind of porn and you need to up the stakes, amirite? What? Nothing.


So I began watching massage videos. NOT IN A SEX WAY. GEEZ. Videos of cranial massages, Swedish massages, all kinds of above board massages. And even though I felt kind of weird and a little creepy, it worked. Boom! Asleep. But when I had watched all the massage videos ever on YouTube and was seriously considering an Ambien/Xanax/whiskey cocktail, in desperation, I fell down the rabbit hole of the “related videos” little side bar area of YouTube. I watched some weird, yelling Russian massages, some Japanese hair massages, and even one thing called a sacroiliac massage which I don’t want to talk about. And then I hit bottom (PUN) with a “whispering video” like the one in the video above.

OH, GOD, IT WAS TERRIFYING.

A “whispering video” is where a person with a little scary dead baby voice talks about whatever, anything, and makes mouth noises into the microphone and, in general, is so gross and disturbing I can’t imagine why anyone would voluntarily want to listen to it. But people do. They fucking love it. There’s a whole market for it and, let’s face it, these people are fetishists. They find it soothing in the same way I find watching a gentle, quiet back massage soothing. It’s weird. IT IS WEIRD. I thought I was weird, but that shit? That shit is weird.

And that’s when I found out about SootheTube. It’s a real THING, you guys. People go to there and watch videos in order to relax, or get straight, or not kill their partners or whatever, and everyone is a little self-deprecating, like, “yeah, I know this is weird, but you like it too, so we’re all weird”. And there are the aforementioned whispering videos (ACK KILL IT WITH FIRE), but also massage videos and some other relaxation videos and even a few hair tutorials sprinkled about for good measure.

So that is what I learned about the Internet yesterday. Now, please go about judging my crazy on a scale of Sheen-Salinger because I would expect nothing less of you.