Monday, July 18, 2011

What's all that shouting about?

This garden plaque has been hanging in The Humble Bungalow Garden for many years.
He looks very fierce and angry, loudly roaring...
yet he is silent.

"Silence is the universal refuge,
the sequel to all dull discourses and all foolish acts,
a balm to our every chagrin,
as welcome after satiety as after disappointment."

~Henry David Thoreau

                                           He reminds me of the Lion in the Wizard of OZ.

The lion character scared me when I was young. 
His roar seemed real and he was so large
I did not understand how vulnerable and meek he was under all that bravado.

I have had the occasion to meet a few people that are...
all huff and puff 
loud and opinionated
but sadly lacking in confidence.
They seem to command quite an audience
and it would appear that they enjoy the attention
I wonder...
if they truly feel genuine
in tune to their body

It's a clever smokescreen, 
the tactic to conceal
their true self from the world.
I do not think we are fooled
are you?

"Our greatest pretenses are built up not to hide the evil and the ugly in us, but our emptiness.  
The hardest thing to hide is something that is not there."  ~

Eric Hoffer, Passionate State of Mind, 1955

Next time I am face to face with someone loud and obnoxious
I plan to whisper
just to see if they will lower their voice
and become less agitated
perhaps become more empathetic and sympathetic
 to those within shouting range!

a picture of a posy of Royal Sunset Roses
whose heady fragrance is wafting 
apricot goodness
The Humble Bungalow 


  1. He reminds me of The Green Man.
    I love Thoreau, he taught me a lot growing up.

  2. hi leslie,

    so, so sorry to hear of your friend christine's cancer. it's all just too much to bear. i just know you will be the most supportive friend.

    good luck with the whisper thing. it does not work for me at all. some people just don't get it. working in a spa makes me very aware of sound and voices. loud people never pick up on my lowered voice. never, ever.


  3. I seem to have missed a few posts!

    At our house in the city (the raccoon capital of Canada!) I was sitting on the deck when I saw movement on the stairs next to me...a baby raccoon! Fortunately instinct immediately kicked in and I DOVE into the house and quickly shut the door. Where there are babies...there are angry mommies!

    I am so sorry to hear about your hairdresser friend.

    I find when one doesnt respond to someone's anger it just makes them angrier. I find saying 'I understand your frustration. What can I to do to make you happy?' works much better.

  4. I agree that some people hide behind their bluster. I learned at a young age that those who brag the most, are the most insecure.

    I hope your hairdresser friend is doing OK.

    The roses are so gorgeous. I need to get out and cut some for my vases.

  5. the flowers are such a vivid color. Yes, bluster in one's delivery is often a lame attempt to hide something far more vulnerable. May your whisper work.

  6. Think these sad people have an inferiority complex,and as Terri has said are very venerable.

    Your orange are a splodge of warm colour on this grey cold evening 12c just put the heating on!!!Ida

  7. First, I want to say how sorry I am to hear about your friend/hairdresser. Cancer is such a prevalent disease these days. I don't think I know one person who isn't touched in some way by it. I hope the best for her.

    Loud, opinionated people make me anxious. I prefer soothing and calm people for company. I find your posts lately to be soothing and calm as well. Always a pleasure coming here. xo, A

  8. Sometimes, it is finding value at another's expense.

    Steven Covey blew me away with this:

    The attitude and spirit of criticism, of comparing, of complaining, of competing, for a sense of your own worth and of contending. That is, a mean spirit(ed) kind of an argument, kind of contention. These are the five: criticizing, complaining, comparing, competing. Not competing in a game or in the market, but for a sense of personal worth and then contending. The mean spirit of contention.

  9. The Shouter And The Flower. Great photo.

  10. I love that old-time teaching strategy - whisper in a noisy classroom and there will soon be quiet.
    It sounds like you might have come across a less-than-polite example of humanity - never a very nice experience.

  11. Your comment about whispering brought back so many memories. When Alexandra and Graham were growing up, beginning with their two year old temper tantrums, I would quiet myself, and respond with a quiet voice. As they grew up, and became "lovely" teenagers, raising my voice did occur. With just a slight inflection, they would panic...."why are you yelling at me????" I used to thing, hmmmm, you have no idea what yelling is!!
    That being said, I am a retired Dental Hygienist. So often, my most gruff patients were those who had the sweetest hearts. They just needed to be heard.
    Thank you so much for this post.

  12. I've lowered my voice when someone is excessively loud in a conversation (either personally, in a business meeting, or casual acquaintance on the plane or bus), and it almost always brings the other's person voice down a decibel.

  13. Thanks for reminding me of the whispering strategy. I notice when my husband's posture is poor, I sit or stand very straight--he immediately corrects his position!
    Thank you for sharing the beautiful roses!!

  14. People speaking loudly, remind me of people who talk nonstop. This endless speaking is much more annoying IMO. I also dislike people, who come too near, when we are talking.
    I read from somewhere, that a trick worth trying with the endless talkers, is to make questions, like how did you FEEL at that time. This should pause the talking for a while.
    But, I find it hard to tell someone to stay at a certain distance when we are talking.

  15. Hostess, I believe you must have the most beautifully decorated with flowers bathroom, ever! Your roses are spectacular. Lucky you.

  16. He certainly has a presence and I am sure he stands guard over your garden...I like the idea of him watching all who pass and all that happens. Silence is often the loudest roar, isn't it? xv