Thursday, October 06, 2011

On Noise

My workplace is quiet. Too quiet. That’s not to say there isn’t a lot of talking going on. My coworkers and I talk constantly, from the minute we get in to the minute we leave. But this is the 21st century. Our communication is centered over email and the company’s i.m. system. When you’re in a silent environment, you don’t want to disrupt it with useless noise. So I’ll send Coworker A a note where I compliment her shoes; I’ll get a message from Coworker B that there are doughnuts in the back of the room and Coworker C will electronically ask me about my lunch plans.

There are times when the quiet gives me a headache. I have a lot of cds downloaded on my computer, so there are times when I put my headphones on and zone out. But sometimes this is problematic. My musical tastes go from gospel to gangsta, so catch me at the wrong moment and I’ll either pray for you or bust a cap in your ass.

This week, I tried to cut down on my musical tug of war. One day, I streamed NPR on my computer. It was cool, but the constant conversations had me so interested in what the hosts were saying, that I couldn’t concentrate on my work. Then I decided to stream NPR’s classical music station. Maybe listening to Mozart would not only motivate me, but it would simultaneously make me a genius. Well, I had the same problem as I did with my own musical selection. One song would have my heart beating out of my chest, and the very next one would depress me.

Today, it is quiet again. I’m going to talk to my plants. If that doesn’t work, I may just start talking aloud to my coworkers. We’ll see how they like that.