Monday, August 01, 2005

The Silence of the Bad Puns

Take a guess what today's big front-page story is today.
  • Continued flooding in India?
  • The latest dastardly Bush deed?
  • Microsoft executive develops a cold?
Bzzt. None of the above. The "news" story that the Times feels is most worthy of today's front-page headlines and color photographs is none other than some dude sitting on a mossy log enjoying "silence." Upon gazing at the featured picture, one might at first think that this is perhaps newsworthy because this man has discovered the forest moon of Endor. Unfortunately, if one thought that, one would be wrong yet again. No, you see Gordon Hempton (the man in question) is newsworthy because he is on a quest for "silence." I put silence in quotes like that because when the article says "silence" it doesn't really mean a lack of all sound, but rather a lack of all human-generated sound.

Now, I'm sure there are many ways that I could make fun of this man and his quest, and I'm somewhat inclined to do so after he basically mocked me personally:
Uninterrupted natural quiet is so rare Hempton thinks many people under the age of 30 have never heard it. "Whenever someone tells me they know a quiet place, I figure they have an undiagnosed hearing impairment, or they weren't really listening."
However, when I read the entire article, I found that unlike your average whacko with a cause, this man is actually going about his quest in a rational way. No crazy tree-hugging protests or even expensive bribery of public officials. No, he just asks people nicely if they'll help him out. That's it. And to be honest, I appreciate his quest. Places where the sounds of nature are the only sounds to hear are indeed quite wonderful.

the mystical rock of "silence"Of course, even though his quest is noble and his methods sane, there is one detail about this story that piques my interest. As a symbol of his quest, Mr. Hempton has placed a small red stone on top of a mossy rock somewhere in the Olympic National Park. I cannot explain fully why, but I must steal that rock. Thankfully, The Seattle Times has given me all the information I need in order to do so, including a map to the general area, a description of the area, and a photograph of the rock in question. Buah-hah-ha! Mr. Hempton's rock will soon be mine!

When I succeed in locating and pilfering Mr. Hempton's rock, I will replace it with a note that reads:
Mr. Hempton,

As an individual under the age of 30, I take offense to your implication that I do not know what quiet is. Just to prove to you that I do not have an "undiagnosed hearing impairment," I have taken your rock and moved it to another quiet place outside the Olympic National Park, but still inside Washington State. Since there are apparently only three such places in the entire state, it shouldn't take you too long to find it.

Yours truly,
Skor Grimm
That will teach him.

Source: Seattle Times
image sourceCategories: Local, Culture


Anonymous Mered said...

Now -that- is a worthy quest.

7:27 PM, August 01, 2005  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Heh heh ... his name is HEMPton

9:16 AM, August 03, 2005  

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