The Loud and the Quiet
What an incredibly shitty week. I don’t know, is there really any other way to describe this week? A week where you not only lose 20 children and 7 adults in an act of violence, but you then need to wade through the endless, pointless commentary by anyone and everyone in the media; the idiotic Facebook status updates throwing blame to every corner of the earth; the infuriating statements of how a seemingly constant stream of violence could be avoided if we just put a random person’s half-baked plan into effect; as well as explaining the fact that horrific acts of violence exist in the world to up-until-now innocent children?
That was my week online. Even the good stuff, the helpful stuff such as the beautiful pictures of the children lost, was TOO MUCH. We used to be able to process quietly or emerge ourselves into the information based on our personal needs, and now it feels like the volume dial is stuck on 10. The only way to take a break is to unplug entirely — from the Internet, from radio, from the television. Which isn’t necessarily a terrible thing.
And then there is the opposite. I lost a childhood friend this week. It is difficult to reconcile the boy I know in my heart with the man he became later in life. All I wanted was to spend a few minutes with other people who remembered him as I do; walking through the dirt at camp in white athletic socks when it became popular one summer to walk barefoot, slow dancing at Bar Mitzvahs, playing “I Never” at sixteen and falling asleep like puppies on Pam’s floor, being the Great One to his Pain (especially when he ad libbed my lines when I walked offstage in fear, helpfully saying, “I’m sure if my sister were here she would say ‘My Brother’s a Pain…”), being the only boy in our dance class as he strutted amongst us to Billy Joel’s “Pressure.” I have only happy memories of him, and I feel so incredibly lucky that I do.
And I found that on Facebook, which made my head finally feel quiet when it was screaming so loudly at me while I was unplugged.