Dear 45s Record room,
I just finished driving due north to beautiful Vashon Island off the coast of Seattle; 1200 miles of dodging Highway Patrol speed traps, over-thinking routes and stuck in hyper caffeine overdrive listening to crazy-ass tirades from loony-right-wingnut talk radio. I suspect the elitist-socialist-coast-hugging-Hollywood-sissy-leftist-yoga flexing-public radio-wingnut they’re talking about is me, except I’m just a record geek on vacation driving a Ford mini-van with my wife and kid on that silvery ribbon of highway. By the way, gas wasn’t terribly overpriced anywhere on the road.
We spent a couple of days at the mouth of the Russian River just north of the Bay Area; insanely gorgeous and weirdly quiet. For most of us, spending a night in John’s cabin was probably a treat. Up there on the Russian River surrounded by big blue chunks, there is no noise, just pure unadulterated silence. I woke one morning very suspicious of silence. Is silence golden? Hell, I think silence is more often than not iron pyrite. Confucius said “Silence is the true friend that never betrays.” Well, I’m always a little dubious. In Buddhism silence and allowing the mind to become silent can help lead to spiritual enlightenment. Unfortunately I doubt I’ll ever know. My hearing is shot and if the high pitch ringing in my ears doesn’t drive me mad, all the noise I use to cover my tinnitus every single frigging day will. I’d like to blame someone other than myself for this predicament; it is the true blue American, Fourth of July, consecrated right to deny personal responsibility. Could I blame some of the 5000 different bands I did sound for in my years as a live engineer? I was raised in the Catholic Church-- maybe the blame should be directed at god? Then again, what’s that going to accomplish? I’m pretty sure by the sixth chapter of the first book in the bible god was ready to kill off everybody; I doubt my tinnitus could qualify as either a concern of the almighty or the act of a vengeful god ... too simple a scheme. However, according to talk radio rationale, I could and should blame Obama, Pelosi, or Letterman and Franken or a least my college education for all my problems.
Anyway, I’ll write you again later, don’t forget to feed the new psychedelic record box, and take out the thrash records, thanks. Oh, and send my regards to the pop vocals clutter. PS: here are a couple of pix from along the way and an old song. One more thing, according to the great mime Marcel Marceau, “Music and silence combine strongly because music is done with silence, and silence is full of music.” I presume he wrote that down.