Friday, August 20, 2010

Shut Up

Make Some Noise

Warning: curmudgeonly post. We do advertise the occasional rant.

Downtown St. Louis can be pretty quiet. On a night when there is no sports event or Lady Ga Ga concert, you can shoot the proverbial cannon down Market Street and not hit anything. Our core has been bled by highway construction and suburban sprawl.

The sports events - baseball, hockey or football - are a big exception. The new baseball stadium is in its fifth season and is mostly nice, except for the horrible noise level. There are huge, unavoidable speakers everywhere. They blast out advertising, up-tempo rock music and pseudo-cheers at a volume that is unquestionably dangerous to our ears (plus really, really annoying). There was a piece in the New York Times yesterday about the damage caused by teens' use of MP3 players and such, and also the added risk of today's high ambient noise level. The Cardinals' audio assault on their fans is irresponsible. I much prefer the Cubs' home, Wrigley Field in Chicago, where the only sounds are the cheers of the crowd and a simple organ.

I've been guilty of plenty of noise self-abuse. When I was in college, my friends and I used to lean loudspeakers into one another, tent fashion, stick our heads in and play Led Zeppelin's Communication Breakdown at maximum volume. In later years, I've been known to play the Dies Irae from Berlioz's Requiem at a sound level similar to the end of the world that it describes. Now I gave difficulty understanding speech if someone else is talking or there is much background noise. What a dope. Take care of yourself. And turn it down, Cardinals.


cieldequimper said...

Well, I'm amazed that they feel the need to invite people to make some noise!

I'm sorry to say that I can't listen to Brahms with the volume on 2.

Oakland Daily Photo said...

Take heart, my friend. I was never a speaker hugger back in the day at the Fillmore. Yet today ambient noise, like water from a faucet or the dryer running, makes it impossible to hear what someone is saying to me from the other side of the room. Let me whisper the reason: age. Ugh.

Birdman said...

LOVE the post title after reading "Make Some..." Hahahahaha