Random Thoughts

"The Sounds of Silence"

... Simon and Garfunkel coined a great phrase

by Ann Robbins Talbot

My house is quiet. Except for the occasional ring of the telephone or a truck passing on the street, I initiate most of the sounds in my home. If I want music, I play a CD. If I want human voices, I turn on the TV. I am usually in control of the noise in my life.

On a weekend in October I had the opportunity to go to Disney World to celebrate Halloween Mickey-style. A special ticket and bracelet let me into all parts of the park from four to midnight. And every once in a while I walked through a treat stop, holding out my trick-or-treat bag for a handful of “penny” candy.

The visual feast of people having fun, ducking for cover during light showers, waiting in entrance lines was fun. Nothing can beat the boat ride through “It’s a Small World” with hundreds of sweet-faced dolls dressed in the costumes of the world. Standing in Fantasyland, epicenter of the fireworks finale, is a wonderland experience with flares over here and rockets over there all heading for the sky at once.

But – enough is enough with the sound of music. Designed with a beat to keep your feet happy, Disney’s signature music follows you from one area to another. If the conversation wanes, you can always listen and perhaps sing along. Everyone knows the Disney classics. Benches are provided to rest your weary feet, but there is no rest for your weary ears.

I heard that this is the year of Make Your Wish Come True. I would propose a five-minute break, on the hour, when the street music is shut off. Some sound will still emanate from the major rides, but everyone could just mentally regroup. Give the break a catchy Disney name and the public would soon get used to it. I am willing to bet there is an on-off switch somewhere in the Magic Kingdom that would perform this service. Toddlers, parents and grandparents might be very thankful for this hourly break. And those who think it’s weird will be equally thankful when the music resumes.  

Jiminy Cricket sings “when you wish upon a star, your dreams come true.” On the next clear night, I will be sending my wish for a regular music break when I return to Disney World.

November 7, 2008

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