Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Quoting Favorites V (or: on Silence)

Mia: Don't you hate that?
Vincent: What?
Mia: Uncomfortable silences. Why do we feel it's necessary to yak about bullshit in order to be comfortable?
Vincent: I don't know. That's a good question.
Mia: That's when you know you've found somebody special. When you can just shut the fuck up for a minute and comfortably enjoy the silence.

This is my favorite quote from one of my favorite movies ever: Pulp Fiction, directed by Tarantino in 94. (Not that Pulp Fiction needs any kind of introduction.)
It ocurred to me while I was spending the weekend with my dad; I dearly love talking to him, he's the reason why I'm so much of myself after all. But I also love sharing silences with him.
While he read his book, I wrote my dissertation; he listened to the radio, and I read my book; he read his book, and I watched tv. And throughout all of that, very few words were indeed exchanged. Always right next to each other, and mostly silent. Comfortably. Spending time together, both in his conception and in mine, does not mean doing the same goddamn thing together. We watched a couple of movies and a soccer match (our team lost, and we bonded in our pain...); we had our meals together, played around with the dog, discussed about some books and I taught him how to use the torrent system (my dad's a computer freak, so benig able to teach him anything at all is a victory).
But all of those activities were intertwined with blissful silence.

When people are comfortable with each other, they do not, I think, feel the need of yaking time away; there's no need to fill in the silences with empty words. 

A workmate of mine always starts talking when everybody else is quiet. Well, not talking: uttering words. Sometimes he tries to strike up a conversation about meaningless topics ("Did you see Brad and Angelina are splitting up?"). Sometimes, he'll actually go as far as saying "Oh guys just SAY something, I hate silence!". It used to bother me a little; then, I was secretly amused by it. Now I just feel sorry for him: it must be horrible not knowing how to shut up.

Hamlet's dying words: he begs his friend Horatio not to kill himself, but to live on and tell his story; announces Fortinbras as the heir to the crown of Denmark; and then, of course: 

The rest is silence.
(Hamlet, Act V, Scene II)

Though I'm aware of the traditional interpretations of this last line, I sometimes wonder just how tired the Dane prince was of all the action, and specially, of all the talking (I mean, have you read his "To be or not to be" monologue? He must've been really tired after that one). That being so, silence would've been a more than welcome rest to the poor guy. 'Tis the kind of rest that I, being a chatterbox myself, am very fond of.

Silence is special. Silence tells you just how strong your bonds with the other really are. Words lie, while silence never does.

7 comments:

RicAdeMus said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
RicAdeMus said...

Ps - I can't make simple decisions after trying to read through Hamlet! ;P

Bella said...

oh! i really loved your post! and i wish i could share such a silence with my mom!!hehe.......anyways...its also good to know that even you love FRIENDS.....and i find chandler very cute especially before monika and he gets married, coz i think he was much more funnier before....

Rml said...

@Rick: neither can I! I wonder who can!

@Bella: hehe, thanks baby! But... what do u mean "EVEN you love Friends"??? Have I come off as such a dull serious person that u thought I didn't like sitcoms?! Oh god...

RicAdeMus said...

In the light of day, I didn't like my first comment. This post is about the special relationship you have with your dad and being comfortable with people IRL. My silly attempt to give you the virtual equivalent of silence was intended to be cute, but it seems inappropriate to me this morning.

I banning myself from making dumb comments for a week! =)

Jamie said...

Awesome post. I, too, love Pulp Fiction.

Rml said...

@Jamie: thanks! =)

@Rick: Ohhhh, I can't believe you removed it! Hehe, I'd liked it!