A Minor Rant

Picture by deviantART.

We have lost a sense of reverence and respect in our culture.
Silence is an endangered species.
People seem to be allergic to quiet.

Friday evening my husband and I went to the symphony and sat in front of folks who talked through large portions of the music.  They did not whisper.  They did not pass a note.  They talked in normal conversational tones.  Their need to comment on the music overrode any sense of respect for the musicians and the fellow patrons.  How rude!

Saturday afternoon I attended the funeral of a lovely 96-year old woman.   Sitting in the sanctuary, listening to the organ prelude could have been a lovely time of reflection and prayer, were it not for the two women near the back who conversed in loud voices that carried across the room.  They were oblivious to the turned heads, the furrowed brows, the hairy eyeballs, the multiple mute pleas to be quiet.  What would have been appropriate for the grocery aisle was so wrong before a gathering to honor the deceased.  It wasn’t fitting.  It was a time to keep silence, a time to bow the head, a time to contemplate our own mortality.

“The world would be happier if men had the same capacity to be silent that they have to speak.”
 ~  Baruch Spinoza

End of rant.

6 thoughts on “A Minor Rant

  1. That happened at my eldest daughter’s high school graduation.  It was on her football field, and there was a large drunk Greek family sitting behind us, very loud and raucous throughout the ceremony.  We turned around several times and asked them to keep it down because we honestly couldn’t hear, but it did no good 😦
    Have you ever thought of turning around and just saying very sincerely, “I can understand that you enjoy talking with each other about the music, but would you mind waiting till after the performance?  I’m just having a hard time concentrating and enjoying the music.  Thank you SO much!”  Or to the talking ladies, “I can understand that you might have a lot to talk about, but would you mind going out in the lobby and doing it?  Some of us just need some time before the service to have a quiet time to pray and meditate.”  I firmly believe that so much of this kind of stuff is due to ignorance and education is the answer.  That’s just my opinion.

  2. It happened at the concert we were at (Handel’s Messiah) on Saturday night.  Unfortunately it was during much of the Amen Chorus…my favorite.  Alas, I’ve missed it for this year. Eventually my old lady “shh” got them quieted down.  My daughter looked at me with relief when they finally stopped. The funeral story tops all.

  3. Years ago when I was at the ballet in Seattle, a couple in front of us were sharing candy during the ballet. Like boxes of milk duds or M & Ms that you would see at a movie theater, so there was this constant pouring sound as they ate. I couldn’t believe it. As a theater major who performed in many stage plays, I can tell you that noises like that definitely do effect the performers. Very rude!

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