All quiet on the Eastern Prom…or maybe not


Luciano Pavarotti

Cover of Luciano Pavarotti

I have been shhhhshed my entire life. I am sure the doctor who helped to deliver me was first in line; me wailing for my first breath, him pointing a finger at me telling me to shhhhsh, to behave. School didn’t improve matters much. Mrs. Bothel, Mr. Brennan, et al, could all attest to my free spirit in the classroom. Even as an adult in various classes, I seem to find myself on the wrong end of the shhhhhsh.

I live in a surprisingly quiet neighborhood. However, I can’t tiptoe around my life. If that involves singing an occasional amazing song out loud while painting, or cheering on the Red Sox while building a shed, so be it. I have neighbors who understand, and who offer their own form of local entertainment.

My neighbors to the back actually apologized once for a breach in neighborhood etiquette for a party that went on well past 11 p.m. and a jam session with their folk band that took place on their upper deck. Their olive branch came in the form of chocolate covered pretzels. I don’t know how I can top that. Both the folk music and the pretzels were way better than my Tina Turner impressions.

By far the most unusual disturbance in the local peace comes from next door, where neighbors are renovating an apartment. Opera floats from the windows by late afternoon thanks to a professional baritone who doubles as a carpenter. Almost daily, I am hearing notes and lyrics from The Marriage of Figaro or Rigoletto. It sounds almost like this:

Imagine if Pavarotti was shhhhhsed incessantly as a child?

Adding music to my day is like pesto on pasta, cinnamon in the sauce; everything is improved. In the car, I like the mixed CD’s made by my daughter. In the kitchen I listen to the local indie rock station. When I write, I prefer classical music, sans lyrics. Right now I am listening to Sympathy for the Devil by the Rolling Stones on Pandora Radio.

…and…I just may turn it up just a smidge.

What gets you shhhhhshed?


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8 Responses to All quiet on the Eastern Prom…or maybe not

  1. Stacey Lee says:

    You can ask my Mum about my needs improvement check in “controls unnecessary talking” that I received on my first kindergarten report card. Got it every report card my entire life. Still haven’t learned 😉 I agree with music on all day. Depending on the task, music can really make it fly by or drag it out so you can enjoy it. Keep the tunes up loud sister!!

  2. Sally Sally says:

    Why am I not surprised to read this, Stacey. Your mother must have been thrilled to send you to school!

  3. Martha says:

    Almost everything

  4. JoAnn says:

    One of the biggest fights I had with my husband as a young bride was when he shhhhhsh’d me! We’ve been married 30 years and he hasn’t shhhhhsh’d me since. Smart husband!!

  5. reigning champion says:

    I’m excited for you to come up to Craftsbury Common- this town is too quie- what’s that? I think I can hear you from here- you must have just passed the state line. I’ll batten down the hatches, do some PSAs, and whatever else I can muster up to warn everyone that you’re coming…

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