Enjoy The Silence.
A Farmer I Am Not
"Farmer José Pablo" by Nestlé is licensed under CC BY-NC-ND 2.0
I do not pretend to be a farmer. Do not call me a farmer. Straw hats would look about as good on me as a Michael Bolton song would look in any playlist of mine. It just does not belong, and I wish to delete the @#^$ out of it, so pardon my pardon.
However, I now own a pasture. Owning a pasture, according to the Universal Pasture Owners Guide Edition 17 page 76 Clause 9 paragraph 3c means, in some respects, something important. Essentially, it means that I have, in short, become a farmer, although this was never my intention, let me assure you, but it was my intention, frankly, to use many commas, in this sentence, particularly.
If you look at the sheer number of technological devices hemming me in on all sides, I am about as “City Boy” as they come. Apple knows this. The 18 Apple devices that we own assure Tim Cook on a daily basis that I am his willing and enslaved Apple Sheep for life. Baaaaa.
Ultimately, we moved to our new house for peace and quiet. And to get away. And because of Covid-19. And because we were paying too much. But mainly for peace and quiet. And to have a pasture.
I just never thought that having a pasture would bring so much serenity. We now live on 3.88 acres of complete serenity, minus the occasional thermonuclear practice runs by the local joint Air Force / Army base which sends my dB meter momentarily skyward. I have written about this before. I will now link to myself, because linking to your previous blogs is cool, and because I could find no article the wiser. Truly, living close to a military base keeps one on one’s toes, and the occasional shellacking is a delightful reminder that my toes have not yet been blown off. Sidebar: Please take time today to appreciate your toes. I often feel that people are not grateful enough for their toes....but I’m sure you feel the same.
You see…often times in life, we do not know where we are. We are confused. We all turn into men (unless we are already men; in which case we just turn into weirder men), reluctant to ask for directions at the gas station. It is during these times that we need to sit down and just breathe: to take in the air and feel the stillness around us. For myself, I do this in my pasture. I sit in the grass and breathe. I relax. I enjoy the feel of nothing but wind and silence, and the slight tickle of that fire ant crawling up my leg that is about to meet its Maker.
My pasture is where I find Shangri-la. My pasture is where I find my peace. My pasture is where I find fire ants.
Maybe I am a farmer after all.
Stop Trying to Figure Everything Out And Just Breathe For Crying Out Loud What Is Wrong With You Kids Today With Your Loud Music I Just Do Not Get It And My Anger At You Over This Has Turned This Into The Longest Section Header Ever
I sat there in my pasture and felt the pulse of my Apple Watch (see enslavement above) buzz against my wrist, signifying the arrival of an audition notice. I did not care, because I was there to untether and regroup. And kill fire ants by slapping them with a girlish shriek (see weirder men, above).
I have been a business owner since 2003. In that time, I have taken exactly eight vacations, not counting my honeymoon, which I am told is a requirement for you to be on once you have gotten married, or you risk your new spouse experiencing what is commonly referred to as "Immakillsomebody" syndrome, ala homicidal tendencies. So I painstakingly rescheduled all of my sitting around time to ensure that I would be there with her. However, counting the other eight vacations, that is only nine vacations in 18 years! The skinny of this overdrawn explanation is that I have not untethered and gotten away nearly enough. This is exactly why we planned a 2-week trip to Hawaii this coming July, for which I am both:
- as excited as an 11-year-old girl and
- confused as to why I switch genders and drop 36 years when excited
Sure, I have taken weekend camping excursions and such. On one occasion I was sleeping on logs and driftwood on the precipice of the Pacific Ocean, because my cousin and I had a daring appetite for danger, as well as no girlfriends to live for. I will never know why we did this. Bears roam the woods and also driftwood and also places by the ocean. Why we would combine all three of these factors into one dangerous place – and sleep there, defenseless – is beyond me. I did however remember to bring my trusty toothpick that I could brandish at a moment's notice.
The point? I think we as a species try far too hard to figure everything out instead of just relinquishing and relaxing. In all of my profound wisdom, let me help you untether. There are things which you will never understand, so it is best to let go and unwind. Here is the complete list of things you will never understand:
- Women. And females who are women.
- Women who ask you if they look fat in something, when we men know full well that whichever answer we give will see us being sawed in two with a nail file.
- Why there are interstate highways in Hawaii.
- People who listen to Michael Bolton (see not ever going to be on my playlist above).
- The fact that sour cream has an expiration date. I do not need to explain this.
- All drivers on all roads everywhere always.
- Why you get a penny for your thoughts, but you have to put your two cents in. Someone is making a penny.
- The color of “flesh”: It is not orange. It is not cream. It is not gold. We simply do not know what color flesh is, so we call it flesh, because we are original and inventive like that. Just the other day, I did not know what a device was called in my inherited tool-shop, so I called it Thing Which I Do Not Know The Name Of. I assume this also works for my children when they are bothering me. If they exhibit an unknown behavior I find annoying, it is called That Which Is Done By The Small Human That Boils My Blood. (Note: this label covers most of their behavior categories.)
- The correct way to mount toilet paper rolls on a dispenser.
- Why people ask me, "Can I ask you a question?" which is not a fair question, because they have already imposed.
- If lawyers are disbarred and clergymen defrocked, why can’t electricians be delighted, musicians denoted, cowboys deranged, models deposed, tree surgeons debarked and dry cleaners depressed?
- Why lemonade has imitation flavoring, but furniture polish contains real lemon juice.
- Evolution. If man evolved from monkeys and apes then someone please tell me why there are still monkeys and apes.
- Why I turn the radio down when I’m driving looking for an address.
- The word “Depeche.”
You are welcome.
So...what kind of mode is Depeche?
All I ever wanted
All I ever needed
Is here in my arms
Words are very unnecessary
They can only do harm
These are brilliant lyrics, and as voice talent, it would behoove us to pay attention to them. When Martin Gore of Depeche Mode wrote this song, yes: he was talking about a relationship where he preferred silence. I personally believe it was because his girlfriend was talking during a WWII nature documentary which, for all men, is grounds for separation. However you slice it, his words ring true. “Depeche” means “hurry” in French - but maybe they knew that, and this song was their self-realization that they needed to slow down.
We spend all day talking. We spend all day listening to ourselves talking. We spend all day editing our own talking and listening to voices. Some might say we’re schizophrenics-in-the-making. I say: we all need to untether once in a while.
Do you ever just pull the plug? Do you ever just venture outside for a walk and clear your head? All that marketing… that recording… that script perfecting… that analyzing… that headphone-editing… all of it… just put it out to pasture.
To me, relaxing out in our pasture is the perfect antidote to days where I bust my hump in marketing, contracts, auditions, networking, teaching, and paid jobs. Sometimes, it can get to be all too much. It’s why I play relaxing Ocean Starfield in the background of my office all day, so that I do not snap and start shooting people.
For me, I say “Depeche” means hurry...to your place of Shangri-la. Get there quick, and enjoy it. For me, that’s relaxing in my pasture for a while, watching the green blades of glass blow back and forth noiselessly. I’ll gladly lie in deafening silence and feel my chest rise and fall while I do nothing else. I’ll unquestioningly hear my heartbeat in dull, calm thumps as I recharge my batteries before diving back into the world of technology. And if technology does creep into my head while out there, it will only be ruminations on the very best tech to completely annihilate fire ants.
Thanks for the reminder, Depeche Mode. Let us all enjoy the silence. After all, I am done speaking for the day, and words are very unnecessary: they can only do harm.
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13 thoughts on “Maybe Depeche Mode had it right all along…”
You posed some very thoughtful conundrums towards the end there! That penny one in particular may have damaged one of my circuits. I have a personal thing about that “flesh color” – it would be better named “preserved cadaver” but I’m no longer allowed to contact Crayola about that.
Have you ever appreciated your toes by getting a pedicure?? I was dragged kicking and screaming to get my first one, whereas now I’ll burst through a wall like the Kool-Aid Man ready to go if I think I hear that word uttered from the next room over.
Fun post as always, Josh!
Haha! No closet pedicure appreciator are YOU, good sir! I will freely admit that I loved the one that I was dragged kicking and screaming to as well. And might I add that the pink shade on my big toes (complete with rainbow and sparkles) really brought out the color in my eyes. So I purchased a 10-pack of them and now go fortnightly. Remind me to show you my toes, which are originally preserved-cadaver-colored.
PS…thank you. It is now 1:44pm and I am STILL thinking about preserved cadaver colors.
Nice reminder to take the time to unplug and relax. So many of the messages we hear are the exact opposite, whether they come from inside our own minds or out. I just took Saturday and Sunday off from all VO related work. It wasn’t easy!
PS, a pasture is awesome, unless preceded by “put out to”.
Agreed! And woe unto the man who takes not the rest from all VO related work. Woe! Woe unto him I say! For it is in the pasture that thy recompense cometh!
We lived on a plot for about two years and I walked with my dog VERY often. The best medicine in the world!! Even when it’s cold out. These days, I still walk a lot – twice a day for roughly an hour through the estate – don’t care about the distance, it’s just JESUS time and I cannot do without it… When I was forced to stop walking at the height of the second wave (I suspect 2m), it was rough… Almost like fire ants. We’re heading for some more fire ants it would seem, so I’m staying put for now – weekly cathartic cleaning and maintenance will have to do, lol. Fixed a cabinet last night and adjusted it tonight, hehe.
Enjoy that pasture! It will “pasturize” all the negativity right out! 😀
Ha! I see what you did there!
I’m still on the hustle to get things moving, but I do try to spend a few hours a night just unwinding or a bit of time on the weekend not worrying about anything.
Maybe one day I’ll be ready to take a real vacation.
I hear that and completely relate – it’s hard for me to untether! Really looking forward to Hawaii. Now, the TRUE test will be…will I leave my mobile studio at home?!?!? We shall see!
I’m reading this on my backyard patio while listening to the rain and staring off into the clouds every now and then.
So, yes, I do enjoy some peace, and quiet, on a regular basis. Well, the rain is not quiet, but, it’s just as good. And, so are commas.
(That was a happy sigh, not a scream of terror. I’m not sure how to differentiate in type…)
Oh, I’m so relieved! *Places hand on palpitating heart* I was about to call the Australian authorities and put out an APB! I’m SO relieved you’re OK. Keep happy sighing.
Personally, I prefer a string of 18 pastures that includes a tee box on one end and a green on the other…just like the one I am heading out to in about an hour. Perfect relaxation interspersed with frustrating slices and fades and WAY to many swings of the club at the little white (or orange, or green) ball. It’s the perfect way to relax AND keep your tension high at the same time.
Seriously, we definitely need to unplug and relax from time to time…all work and no play and all that. I don’t have a pasture yet, but there is definitely one (14 acres in South Carolina!) in my not too distant future! I’m in a depeche to get there!
Let’s take care of this now. I hereby coin this activity that is both relaxing AND stressful….*wait for it*……….*here it comes*…….Stressaxing! You heard it here first, folks.