A Sound Isolation for 2020Saturday, January 11, 2020
I have written about losing contacts here. Now in this 2020 my sense of isolation from a previously comfortable and predictable world is worse.
My friend lawyer and former stellar journalist for the Globe and Mail, Christopher Dafoe is in a job transition. My phone number to him did not work. In desperation I went to Canada 411 and found one Christopher Dafoe. I called. The man in the answering machine sounded really old and I instantly knew that is was Christopher Dafoe père. I have met the man who always seemed to have a ready smile. He was a well-known theatre critic. I left a message and his son eventually called.
We had a very long phone chat. As we were talking about music he told me that he listened to his faves on ear buds. That struck a chord and has led me to this blog.
The people in the above and my last diary (2007) are mostly dead, have moved to another city or country or have gotten rid of their land line. This means that if I want to find anybody I must resort to social media. It they are not there then they are gone from my miniscule circle.
There are a few with whom I had some friendship issues. In my attempt to tie up loose ends I called the ones I could call to make amends. None have called me back. I have a few friends who are very sick. I have left repeated messages. They do not call back. I am now ready to let it all rest.
I think I know when some of this began. I rarely listen to music (even in earbuds). Why?
The salient reason is that I used to listen to music in my very good living room sound system. I would put music quietly when we had dinner parties or that mandatory Vivaldi Gloria for our Christmas Eve dinner.
As CDs became obsolete ( I have a portable one for our Cruze which I use when we drive to visit our daughter in Lillooet) people listened to music with their phones. This guy finds it much too complicated to download or insert music in our Chevrolet Cruze that originaly had no CD player.
People got used to listening to music without company. After all these years of that the idea of listening to music to share with people who are with you in person is pretty well gone. Now they share music in social media and particularly when some rock music luminary dies, “This was my favourite music by…”
My friend Christopher Dafoe understands all this. We are soon going to meet over some Calvados and “shoot the bull” as we used to say.
In the heyday of the exotic dancer craze in the Vancouver 80s it was pleasant to meet with friends at the Drake and drink a few beers (in my case soda water). Now with most of those establishments gone my guess is that some men look at stuff on their phone in solitude.
I may have at least 12 versions of Gerry Mulligan playing My Funny Valentine. Without the need of an earbud or my still extant sound system I can listen to it in the memory of my imagination (in stereo?). The only way I would ever play it I the living room would be if a some friend would call and tell me, “Alex I want to visit you so we (that important we) can listen to your 12 versions of My Funny Valentine. I also understand you have an extensive e collection of Astor Piazzolla.”
That circle is getting smaller and smaller. Alas!