The Treehouse + The Cave

The Treehouse + The Cave: Missing Absence <body><script type="text/javascript"> function setAttributeOnload(object, attribute, val) { if(window.addEventListener) { window.addEventListener('load', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }, false); } else { window.attachEvent('onload', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }); } } </script> <div id="navbar-iframe-container"></div> <script type="text/javascript" src=""></script> <script type="text/javascript"> gapi.load("", function() { if (gapi.iframes && gapi.iframes.getContext) { gapi.iframes.getContext().openChild({ url: '\x3d9561264\x26blogName\x3dThe+Treehouse+%2B+The+Cave\x26publishMode\x3dPUBLISH_MODE_BLOGSPOT\x26navbarType\x3dBLACK\x26layoutType\x3dCLASSIC\x26searchRoot\x3d\x26blogLocale\x3den_US\x26v\x3d2\x26homepageUrl\x3d\x26vt\x3d455617431721372491', where: document.getElementById("navbar-iframe-container"), id: "navbar-iframe" }); } }); </script>

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Missing Absence

Each and every time I make it past the city's paved borders and into fields, forests and mountains, I'm shocked to discover that I've forgotten what silence is; what darkness is; in many ways, what absence is. The same flood of pleasant and empty memories; the same simultaneous familiarity, novelty; the same acceptance that the knowledge will not last, all befall me.

I do not experience silence here, never darkness. Even at my most sedate, sleeping soundly through the night, I am bombarded with far-less-than-ambient sound; my loft is bright enough to easily expose photographs (sans tripod). Creeping in through poorly veiled windows and from pin-prick LEDs, light and the information it often conveys breach what should be as black and silent as space. Sodium-vapor street lamps, a red digital alarm clock, snoring white Apple LEDs, headlights panning across our panes, 6 faint green OLEDs on 6 black boxes, the occasional blink from the smoke detector, the occasional blink from the carbon monoxide detector, and the constant orange sky on any day not crushed under a high pressure system; all conspire to extend my hours of stimulation into a space once reserved for reflection and rest.

With life this full, saturated by employment and pleasure (both now augmented by always-on media appliances), I'm comforted to know that many like myself are beginning to ask: Why? What are the consequences of such toil? What does it mean that I find the silence of the rural landscape disconcerting, that I wake up in the night to check email, feeds and Bit Torrent? How much emptiness, absence is necessary for peace, introspection and innovation? How has our abandonment of the 12 -hour day for the 24 advanced us? Has it? Will we fall prey to the voracity of our collective appetite? Have we?


The Beneficial Powers of Darkness by Hugh Wilson via Circadiana
Quitting the Paint Factory by Mark Slouka via Heather

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