Radio Silence

Starting an internet radio station which broadcast only silence was his way of finding relaxation. Accessible from anywhere, he could log on whenever he needed a moment’s respite from the daily turmoils. Plug in the earbuds, and tune out of the modern world for a while.

He shared it with others. The simple pleasure of listening to nothing at all had a wider appeal than he expected. Soon thousands of people from all walks of life were tuning in. Many contacted him to share how Radio Silence calmed them, comforted them, graced them with an interval of solace in their hectic, modern lives.

But after a while, he started hearing fragments of foreign material in the silence. Echoes of love, pain, loss, desire, longing, boredom, conflict, passion, death. Aspects of life which he had hoped the silence would drown out.

Others began to hear these sounds, too. Some found the experience unpleasant, and accused him of inserting disturbing material into the silence to intrude on their peace. Some claimed he had an ulterior motive – commercial, religious, or something sinister involving the government. This stress only made the intrusive sounds louder, more shrill, more persistent.

Eventually, the deafening sounds in the silence became too much. He stopped listening to Radio Silence. Across the planet, he and thousands of others opted instead to listen to loud music, to banal chatter, or to any random noise available. Anything at all, just to drown out the noise in their own heads.

cb/2015

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