Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Earplug Vendors

Available wherever loud noises are found
  (+16, -2)(+16, -2)
(+16, -2)
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You practically can't ride the subway in NYC anymore without some loud guy coming into your car at some point during your trip and shouting or playing drums for 10 minutes. So, I recommend some enterprising vendor buy hundreds of pairs of earplugs, and then, as soon as the panhandler or the guy with the drums shows up, stand up and announce "Earplugs! 25¢ a pair!" Or sell them silently, just holding a sign.

He/She will make a LOT of money.

Other places the Earplug Vendor will be appreciated are bus depots or train stations where there is an annoyingly loud band playing but where people have no choice but to wait for the train, or any street corner where an Annoying Loud Person has set up shop.

Conductors on commuter railroads could also sell earplugs on demand to passengers. It could be extra revenue for the railroad company.

I have my own homemade packet with a pair of earplugs that I carry sometimes, but even I forget it sometimes and since I never know when I'll end up needing them, Earplug Vendors would be a welcome addition to my noisy city. Thank you.

phundug, Aug 11 2008

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       They have these guys at motor racing events. I understand that a whole dollar is the asking price.
Texticle, Aug 11 2008
  

       Ear plugs are also available with a lead, so that when not in use they can be hung around the neck. I imagine they could also be hung from the straps in the subway and reused by successive passengers, after wiping the wax off. The added bonus would be that if you forget to take them out when disembarking, they would automatically pull themselves out.
Ling, Aug 11 2008
  

       <ling>reused by successive passengers</ling>   

       I don't even reuse my *own* earplugs, and I used to use them on a daily basis. Methinks the health department (and other passengers) would take issue with the idea.   

       Great idea, though, phundug. One additional thought - where I used to work (a paper mill) there were earplug dispenser at every entrance to the production area, and the box of earplugs they put in it was especially made for the dispenser. It shouldn't be too difficult to add a coin mechanism to such a dispenser and turn it into a self-service earplug-machine.   

       Of course, you would have to come up with a solution to the subsequent increase in litter from discarded earplugs...
Capt Skinny, Aug 11 2008
  

       //Thank you.//   

       My pleasure, [phundug].
crash, Aug 11 2008
  

       You have a noisy name, [crash]! I need earplugs just to read your notes :) Just kidding
phundug, Aug 11 2008
  

       for a premium, earplug-style earbuds.
nomocrow, Aug 11 2008
  

       sounds like an invitation the source of the noise and the vendor to work together to pump up sales.
WcW, Aug 11 2008
  

       I always have a hard time finding earplugs when I need them, yet I can always find wintergreen chewing gum. If that balance were reversed, I'd be much happier.   

       This would be perfect in those clubs where people screw around with audiomulch on maximum volume, trying to find music in a vat of noise.
mylodon, Aug 12 2008
  

       They should be free! Save the ears! [-]   

       (Plus I don't need it, I almost always have 2 pairs in my pocket, what hearing I have left is far too valuable to me to leave to chance)
gomer, Aug 12 2008
  

       What might be good would be earplugs attached to each other by some wire with small reverberating coil drivers in the earpieces. An electrical current, defined by a magnetically recorded analogue strip in a device by your hip, might be able to vibrate the ear coils to the point that they move the air in your ear and produce sound, perhaps even audible melodies could be played, lessening your awareness of your immediate surroundings and replacing them with some pleasant music.   

       Now THAT's halfbaked!
theleopard, Aug 12 2008
  

       + and I would like ear plugs with little earrings dangling off the ends, too.
xandram, Aug 12 2008
  

       Now there's a thought: fashion earplugs.
Ling, Aug 12 2008
  

       Apple would call it the iPlug, make it out of white plastic, and sell it for $50
plasticspoon, Mar 06 2009
  

       they would, too.
FlyingToaster, Mar 06 2009
  
      
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