Monday, July 23, 2012

THE SMOOTH SILENCE

It's like that old joke about the drums:

A man goes to a Pacific island for vacation. As the boat nears, he notices the constant sound of drumming. As he gets off the boat, he asks a native how long the drumming will go on. The native replies: "Very bad when drumming stops."

Later that day, the drums still pound. The tourist asks another native when the drumming will stop. The answer is the same: "Very bad when drumming stops."

After a couple of days with no sleep, the man is worn slick. And suddenly, the drums stop. The man grabs the first local he sees, slams him against a tree, and screams, "What happens now that the drumming has stopped?"

The native answers: "Bass solo."

With no warning, the drumming has stopped. The silence is smooth, complete, deafening. Out of fear, out of respect, I dare not break it.

There's a bass solo about to start. No doubt I'll feel it in my chest, the way music pierces and pounds a body at a too-loud rock concert. Bleeding from my ears at the current roaring silence, I stumble around in a daze, ready for the deep bite from the bass clef.

Vacation starts next week. That should be fun, The Writer said to himself, resisting the urge to say something, anything.

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