The Finch Formerly Known As Gold

14 April 2005

Silence is golden

As late as this morning, I was contemplating the idea of adding audio clips to this site as an Additional Gee-Whiz Feature, because, after all, I am a guy and I take Gee-Whiz (well, Whiz anyway) very, very seriously.

Andrea Harris shot down that idea, probably for good:

I, and I am sure a lot if not most of the bloggers out there, have a face for radio and a voice for print. I can't stand to hear my own voice on a recording device — I sound like Kermit the Frog with a sinus infection. I held out for years before buying a fucking answering machine. I'm fifty pounds overweight. Why the hell would I think anyone would want to hear or see me?

But the other, and more important (to me anyway) thing is that print is a faster and more efficient way of getting a message across than voice or video. Think about how long it takes to sit and listen to or watch a monologue, and then go read a passage of text containing about the same amount of words. Which was faster? Also, which didn't have someone (say this was an amateur, inexperienced monologist) punctuating his or her speech with pauses and silences of varying length, stutters, stammers, the involuntary "ahs," "ems," and "uh....s" that all but the most experienced public speakers can't entirely eliminate from their conversation.

Mrs. du Toit was good at this. She didn't have her speech interrupted by random noises or unexpected silences; her delivery was smooth, and it didn't at all hurt that she has a voice that will melt zinc. Still, she's the exception: the rest of us (and I sound like Andy Devine's horse trying to do an impression of Rochester) establish the rule.

A certain amount of gratitude (I think she prefers cash) would seem to be in order.

Posted at 9:18 AM to Blogorrhea


You had me scared for a second there. Back away from the Whiz.

Posted by: aldahlia at 11:12 AM on 14 April 2005

Yeah. The last thing we need around here is that yellow-journalism stuff.

Posted by: CGHill at 11:52 AM on 14 April 2005

Nothing personal, but if I wanted to hear people talk, I'd listen to the radio. Besides, I can read a hundred times as much material in the time it takes to listen to one podcast.

Posted by: rita at 1:27 PM on 14 April 2005

Connie Du Toit was once an actress. It doesn't surprise me that she has a smooth, pleasant delivery. But for most of us, the medium of text is all we're good for...if that.

Posted by: Francis W. Porretto at 4:47 PM on 14 April 2005

I didn't know that about the Mrs., but it certainly makes sense.

I do hope I never have to do another television interview. And if I do, I hope I draw an editor as excellent as the one I had last time; I came off quite a bit less dorky than I deserved.

But if I just drone into my microphone (a Seventies artifact, but it still works), I figure I'll probably alienate more people than I'll attract.

Posted by: CGHill at 8:22 PM on 14 April 2005