Moving In Silence (Season 2020 Episode 8)
Play episode · 1 hr 8 min
NOTE: I began preparing for this episode some days before the violent death of George Perry Floyd Jr. in Minneapolis at the hands of a police officer. As violence broke out across the country it seemed best to stay silent and observe. And listen. The irony of the title of today's episode wasn't lost on me. It was purely coincidental. I was already thinking very seriously about my own urge to be quieter in some specific areas of life. If you've listened to the COVID19 episodes you could likely figure out that my tolerance of highly opinionated, judgmental people is eroding. I've never much cared for it, but if the coronavirus didn't bring such people out of the woodwork, this current ordeal surely has. I simply want you to know that today's show is not a response to specific incidents or any news, but today's show is mostly provoked by human behavior. Disagreement. Anger. Assumption. Judgment. Strife. Contention. No big shock really. Behaving poorly is almost always the easy choice. Doing the right thing - behaving with kindness - requires more from us. At the beginning of the pandemic, I began to post some audio sermons in a YouTube playlist entitled, In Thy Paths. The first sermon (21 minutes long) was entitled, A Certain Samaritan Answers The Question, "Who is my neighbor?" I've embedded it here in case you want to give it a listen. Even if you're irreligious I hope the message will resonate with you. So with that, let's talk about moving in silence. Thank you for hitting that play button. I know your time is valuable and I can't properly thank you enough for giving me your time and attention. Without you, I'm just a guy talking to himself into a microphone!

It started some time ago with Baker Mayfield, starting quarterback for the Cleveland Browns, but most notable in my book as being the OU Sooner Heisman Trophy winner. Last year I was highly entertained by him, as usual. But I'm a fan, so that's my bias. During the offseason - and even during the season - Baker was widely criticized for being too loud and talkative. Prior to the beginning of this weird 2020 season, Baker decided it was time to start "moving in silence" - a quote from his press conference that captured my attention.

John Prine's song had already been in my ears and on my mind, Quiet Man. And for weeks I'd been giving serious consideration to my urge to become quieter, not in a podcasting sense necessarily, but in other real-life situations. Truth was, I had made up my mind weeks ago that I was going to be much quieter in some areas of my life.

And there's more music about silence or quiet, too. One of my favorite bands, Mandolin Orange, released an album in 2010 entitled, Quiet Little Room.

Then about a couple of weeks ago Ken Yates released a new album, Quiet Talkers. It's like the universe was pushing, not just nudging, this idea of quietness. Something that isn't all that hard for me. In spite of the fact that I'm a podcaster who struggles with consistency.

Thoreau wrote, "The mass of men lead lives of quiet desperation." I'd also been thumbing through an old book (circa 1988) - a paperback that I've had for years entitled, "Quiet Desperation: The Truth About Successful Men."

There are a number of books dealing with introverts which have a focus on the power of quiet.

The paradox is that I'm compelled to communicate. Until I'm not.

Then I'm even more compelled to be silent. And it can last quite a while.

I don't read the genre, but I jotted down a quote I ran into that I thought was quite clever. Science fiction writer, Philip K. Dick crafted a great line in a novel, Valis:
“When you are crazy you learn to keep quiet.”
Perhaps I'm becoming aware of my own craziness. Maybe that's fueling my desire to pick my spots and grow increasingly quieter. I'm not sure. How can I be? I'm crazy. ;)

I know that I'm quite fond of 3am.
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