Increasingly, authentic noise and artificial noise are indistinguishable, ultimately numbing.
Is this story about schooling and politics? It is if you’re an allegorical cat . . .
“Point Is Made on Grass Court, No Amplification Needed”
By HARVEY ARATON
New York Times July 1, 2007
. . .it was a pleasure again yesterday to have left behind the exploding scoreboards and ear-splitting music of the playoffs spring and the baseball summer, the clown mascots, the busty cheerleaders and the wanton juvenility that have become America’s sporting trademark.
. . .like me.
I see power of story in all sports but I pay particular attention to tennis. Last year during Wimbledon I connected systemic academic problems with tennis training and coaching, and my Culture Kitchen blog diaries often connect the school and sport stupidities belched out by massive mindless noise machines:
I realized that the ending really seemed surreal at best. Why on earth would the corporate sponsor know more than the WTA CEO about tennis? Say, who’s running the women’s tennis tour anyway? I have to admit that I’m still confused. Why is this plot so hard to follow?
On or off the courts, in or out of court, that’s assault by noise, environmental pollution dangerous to living creatures, destructive to healthy habits and habitats.
Assault by NOISE (in sports, religion, politics, Broadway and action movies, sensationalized cable “news”, popular music, spam and sock puppets online) can spoil anything and everything, numbing us to each other, to our own authentic inner ear and to the possibility of peace anywhere.
Amplified sound, in effect, may diminish rather than amplify our individualism, our audience, even our own ability to pay attention or care about all we’ve lost. . .
Are the classic sounds of civic life — truth, beauty, goodness, justice, love — enhanced or diminished when, in the name of presenting them for popular consumption, we distort their very meaning and amplify our own differences to deafening levels that do permanent damage to human ears, minds, and hearts?
And I can’t help but connect all of that directly back to the systemic denegeration of schooling, to the damage done by psychic and sensory noise assault in a classroom, a community, a college or camp, a family — anywhere children learn and think and feel.