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Friday, October 3, 2014

A Code Of Silence



Ever get on an elevator with strangers, people you don’t know?  Maybe one or two, maybe a larger group?  Sometimes you might be taking the ride up or down with one or two folks you know, but the rest of the carriage has other folks you don’t know.

There is this Code Of Silence that most everyone follows.  Can’t find it written anywhere.  I don’t believe anyone ever cautioned me to be quiet or to not speak in an elevator.  It just seems to be something that one does, or in this case, doesn’t do.  A Code of Silence. 

If someone does speak, it is done quietly and in a low voice.  One can’t talk loudly in an elevator because, well, it might be too loud.  But one cannot speak in a whisper, because the feeling might be if you whisper in an elevator, other passengers might be uncomfortable because they aren’t sure what you’re saying or what you’re whispering about.  Seems inappropriate to whisper in an elevator somehow.

So, the passengers in an elevator mostly remain quiet, still, and motionless.  Perhaps most eyes are front and center, a bit lifted to stare at the lighted number above the door waiting for their turn.  And when the elevator stops on the appropriate floor, the doors open up and the passengers leave.  Sometimes one by one, sometimes in groups, to go on about their business. 

And often when the doors open and when passengers disembark there is talk and laughter, perhaps relief.  The brief lull ended.  The moment of silence observed.  And then all move on with life.

A Code Of Silence.

There are times when each of us should observe A Code Of Silence.  I believe it is necessary and appropriate to do so.  How else can we cope with the race we run, the maze of life we explore, the pace we must keep up with?

How else but with A Code Of Silence can we stop and think and reflect on what we’ve done . . . are doing . . . on where we’ve been . . . where we’re going?

For me, mornings have always been that time for me.  I lie in bed somewhat, but mostly awake, and think.  I ponder.  Sometimes I’m out of bed and sitting in the family room by myself in the not quite daylight.  Television off.  Newspaper untouched.  No music, no sound other than perhaps the air conditioner turning on and off or an ice cube or two dropping into the bucket in the freezer.  Kim is out running or at the Y swimming.  Emily is still sleeping.  Hannah is off at college.  Our dog, Bailey, lounging on her couch in the other room.  And I sit on the couch with my feet up enjoying the stillness, the silence.  It is relaxing for me.  It helps me recharge.  It helps me refresh.  It helps me.  It helps.

I have a brother-in-law who walks in the woods.  For as long as I can remember, Jim would take long walks.  Hike.  Explore.  He’s always been a hunter and fisherman, but often, he’d just take a walk.  To enjoy the stillness, the quiet, the peace.  The beauty that is of his world, but not of his world.  My wife, Kim, runs in the dark, early in the predawn of day.  Her time to think, to recharge.  She calls it her “cup of coffee.”  Sometimes after I’ve sat and thought and reflected, I wonder why Emily isn’t up, so I wander back upstairs, knock on her door, and find her sitting in bed reading.  No music.  No TV.  No computer.  Just a book in her hands and a smile on her face.  Maybe one she has read once or twice already, sometimes a new book by a new author.  Content with life.  At peace.

Perhaps each of us can make it a point to keep A Code Of Silence with ourselves at some point each day.  I believe that just as water and air and sunlight are necessary for our well-being, so is silence.  The peace of it.  The quiet of it.  The focus of it.  Something to think about . . .

Live Your Life, and Make A Difference!

To My Readers:
Thank you so much for taking a chance on a rookie writer and for making Taking Lives, my debut novel a success.  For those of you who haven’t given it a shot, it can be found at:

Great News . . . .
Taking Lives is the prequel to my trilogy.  The first book of the trilogy, Stolen Lives, will be out and available in November.  I don’t have a release date yet, but as soon as I find out, I will let you know.  And again, thank you for taking a chance on a rookie.  JL

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Thank you for your comment. I welcome your thought. Joe