I don't like silence.
I like being surrounded by noise.
I have to admit this after spending time in quiet neighborhoods and having pleasant conversations in peaceful environs-
But missing the roar of engines, the mysterious repetitive noises that drive you up the wall, the sirens (which during the pandemic blared all day and night), the neighbour upstairs hammering nails, the alarm going off for the umpteenth time in the middle of the night, the seaplane engine in the atmosphere assuring you that someone somewhere is doing crazy shit like flying a contraption through the air, the rustling of leaves on trees planted in concrete, and the engine roar of the inconsiderate ass riding his Harley through urban artery at full throttle-
Makes me think of my own mortality and all the regrets of life, of which I have none because I drown it all in the bliss of noise- the noise of people going about their business, of shiva-kali banging existential drums in eternal dance of orgiastic creation and destruction, shimmering crowded streets and shopping malls- drunkenly and disorderly joyous along Granville street, picking fights with strangers in front of bars, squealing chicks on heavenly sidewalks, the sound of cash registers cha-ching cha-ching cha-ching and the sushi chef chops chops chops and the delivery driver dings dings dings
and let me digress here for a moment, to tell you about the time during the pandemic, when I went downtown during soft lockdown to check out the scene on a Saturday night, let me tell you about the eerie silence that permeated the city because we were all locked up in our homes with only camera rebels and lost souls wandering through ghostly streets- All lost, humanity hunkering down for extinction potential- and all this silence of a dead Saturday night
I would guess most people prefer the beauty and solitude of nature. Her serene silence which even has benefits for soul, mind, body and spirit, its slows cozy Quaalude raw genetic embrace. I understand. So seductive to be in her arms sucking on the teat of grandeur and pacific verdant reveries. I myself partake of her company, rushing up her bushes and over mountains switching back and forth with 40 pounds of camping gear on my back to bathe in moonlight and majestic aura of alpine silence.
But yesterday I got in a roaring plane that creaked itself onto the sky and across clouds, rode a jingling snapping crackling train across whispering rails, got crapped on by laughing bird outside train station while waiting to cross the street to the hum of traffic, then back to the sounds and the laughter and the noise of a city in the throes and spasms of cybernetic labour
I figure, we're at war with the forces of entropy. This is our training ground for those battles. The western front. Like a good general, I like to hear my troops hauling ass and marching and singing and laughing in the jangling wheels of the seasons- ready for the battles to come in disorder and confusion along the northern wall-
bring on the noise of the crowds in the stadium and sobbing Taylor Swift fans waiting for her arrival that never comes- let me hear the mad rambling of corner prophets, the cry of the seagull in the bay, the dinging of the bike rider everyone loves to hate, the coffee machines hissing into warm milk, the giggling scantily clad feminists coming out of movie theatres dressed in pink- on the waves, the rowers shouting dragonboat commands, the skateboarders raising a racket again with their anti-gravity tricks to the sound of crows chasing a raccoon in the urban thicket- the naked activists fighting for some cockamamie cause or another, and the hoochie-coochie sounds rising from dark alleys behind the throbbing beat of the night club; here's where I feel alive because others are alive, and I can hear them. Their wails and torments, their joys and ecstasies, the boom boom and bang bang, and the whole whirring beeping shouting splashing rolling beat beat bop swaying swoosh of short mini-skirts rustling against skinny legs and all, then I'm alive with the slurping sounds from ramen joints and ice cream shops, here I am alive with each lick and slurp, and the waves crashing against the seawalls of the 21st century, the mournful horns in the fog, and at the end of the day, as flying Canada geese cry in the evening, then there will be silence.
Video by @litguru