A silent world

A silent world

Recently, I went to see the new movie A Quiet Place. The characters in the movie can’t make any noise at all, or they’ll be captured by a creature that has an impeccable sense of hearing. Since they can’t make any sound, the movie was completely silent except for the suspenseful music every now and then. You could hear every little noise anyone in the packed theatre made. Every movement in a seat. Every handful of popcorn being chewed and swallowed. Every cough or sniffle.

Everyone in the theatre would have died if they were in the movie.

The people sitting in the same theatre as I were incapable of staying silent for an hour and a half. The characters in the movie had to live in silence. I know it was only a fictional movie, but it led me to some thinking.

The world is never truly silent.

It’s never going to be completely still. Noiseless. Serene. Sure, there are parts of the world that are always like that, but it isn’t the entire planet that is noiseless. New York City is the city that never sleeps for a reason; Times Square is lit up like a Christmas tree 24 hours a day, 365 days a year. New York City will never be still.

I don’t know of anyone who has experienced true silence. No noise at all. Just them and their thoughts, which is a scary, intimidating idea. Maybe that’s why we don’t live in silence, why we can’t live in silence. We would drive ourselves crazy.

Sound is inescapable.

In Honors English, we just finished the dystopian novel, Fahrenheit 451, which was also an eye-opener. In the book, firefighters burn books because their content can negatively affect minorities. They burn the books because they make people in the society think about questions they would never have asked. They burn the books so people can be happy. Technology fills the void where knowledge from books should have been.

Sound familiar?

Obviously, books aren’t burned in today’s society; but technology is taking over just like it did in Fahrenheit 451. Technology contributes to the noisiness of the world. Everywhere we turn, there’s an ad for a smartphone even faster than a competitor’s. When we pull up a news article for a project, neon ads pop up that cover the words we’re trying to read. The ads suddenly play loud music that forces us to press the mute button, and we sit there, defeated. We just wanted some information for a project.

The world is noisy. The hustle and bustle of major cities, the bouncing basketballs in neighborhoods, the conversations over text or in person. Technology makes it impossible to live a life of silence, and we’ve become so used to the noise that it’s not even concerning to anybody.

We’ll never have a silent world. Isn’t that concerning?