July 30, 2000
Losing My Voice

[and yet STILL managing to aimlessly blather about nothing!! how DOES she DO it??]

For the second day in a row I am sitting here alone at the computer, looking for my voice ... and not finding it.

But then again, I'm not "looking" very hard.

I don't believe I've spoken more than three words out loud this entire day, since David left at 9 a.m. to go take care of family obligations. (And two of those words were expletives. Do you know how heavy a *#$%! distortion box can be, when dropped on delicate naked feet?!?)  After breakfast he was planning to go to his parents' house in Walnut Creek. I don't expect him back for hours. Yesterday was a lot the same way: he spent the whole day in San Francisco, fixing bicycles with his friend Graham ... while I stayed behind and basked in ten hours of absolute quiet.

It feels like I'm doing something sacred. Or naughty.

I'm liking it a lot, either way.

I have no writer's voice to *speak* of this weekend, either. But it's OK. Yesterday I spent about an hour outlining a journal entry -- all about "Survivor" and "Big Brother" and the whole reality-based TV phenomenon, and about what I like/what I hate about these shows, and about the hypocrisy of people who go onto an AOL message board and announce that these shows are "the worst type of voyeurism!" (but never hesitate to share the juicy details of their latest polyamory adventure) ... but about halfway into it I suddenly decided "I'm not saying anything here that needs to be said." And I shitcanned the whole thing.

I might end up doing the same thing with this journal entry. I don't know yet.

Yesterday -- during a languid afternoon of online travel, after I'd abandoned the idea of writing anything -- I came across the following, posted on the Writer's Haven message board:

" ... A quiet board can be so graceful, at least to me. I love when things show up here after long, white-spaced intervals filled presumably with the otherliness of life."    

~ © 2000 by SubletAnais@aol.com ~
Reprinted with the kind PERMISSION of the author, because
that's the way it's DONE .

She's referring to the way an established message board ebbs and flows, as its participants drop in and drop out according to "the otherliness" of their lives. (Isn't that just a beautiful phrase?!? And don't you just hate this woman for coming up with it before you did??)  But I think it's applicable in a lot of other places and situations.  Once in a while ... I need a little white space. Not just here on the journal, but everywhere in my life. A temporary reprieve from the sound of my own voice. Time to catch up my own version of "otherliness."

The good news is: that's precisely what this weekend has been all about.

The exterior silence here in The Castle matches the silence in my head. I'm not one of those people who automatically turns on the television or the stereo or the blender, just for the distraction value. In fact, I find it incredibly annoying when people do that. (Especially when they live directly NEXT DOOR to you ... and they have a special *fondness* for The Home Shopping Network.)  I will admit that a couple of times this morning I've been overcome with a sudden urge to break the silence and hear a specific song -- "Now That I Don't Have You" by Jill Sobule, "Big Big World" by Emilia, the first disc in the Glam Rock set -- or to work on the mix tape I'm making for Jaymi's visit this week. When that happens, I pad over to the stereo, slip the CD into the turntable and play just that one song. While it plays I stand directly in front of the speakers, throwing all of my focus and attention into the listening, until the song is over. And then I turn the stereo off again.

The quiet spreads across the apartment again, like dust clouds settling after the building implodes.

When David is here, this place is all about noise and guitars and frenzied activity. Chris Spedding on the stereo! Super Blablazo on the TV! Rickenbackers! Water running! Turn on all the lights! Throw open all the curtains! Answer the phone! Let's cook something! Let's repair something! Let's haul some dirty towels over to the laundry room! Let's vacuum the bathroom! Let's clean out the refrigerator!  It's like living with a big handsome noisy disruptive tornado. A big handsome noisy disruptive tornado who I love and adore with my whole heart, of course ... but a tornado, nonetheless.

On days when he's not here, it's like suddenly discovering that you are the processed cheese slice in the middle of a big *Quiet Sandwich.*

Anyway. Enough blathering. I figure I have about four hours left before my self-imposed silence is over. I want to get off the computer (even the hum of the hard drive is more *noise* than I am in the mood for today) ... go enjoy a little more of that white space (and that lovely, quiet, private "otherliness") while I can ...

... and wait for my tornado -- and my voice -- to return.

two years ago

throw a rock