Saddled with a pretty awful sore throat, the like of which I’d not experienced before, but struggling on heroically anyway, things were unpleasant but just about tolerable. I was determined to carry on regardless – alas, (now there’s a word you don’t often see in print), my throat had other ideas.
Picture the scene: I’m sat in a restaurant, perusing the menu; I open my mouth to order… And nothing comes out. I try again, and a sort of high pitched squeak escapes – and that’s how it continues for the rest of the night.
I’d never really thought that ‘losing your voice’ was a real thing, yes of course there are times when colds and such like can make it difficult to talk, but to be in a position whereby the best that can be achieved is a variety of squeaks and raspy sounds puts things into a whole new perspective. Worse still, if this had happened just a couple of days before, it wouldn’t be a big deal at all, unfortunately this was a work day and I’d just travelled 250 miles to deliver two days of intensive training. There are many things you can plan for and contingencies that could be put into place in case of disaster: simple things like laptops failing, venues not being up to scratch, fire, flood and earthquake, but when the one thing you really can’t do without, and for which there’s no backup, let’s you down things do get just a little bit hairy!
That was RL, if it had been SL things would have been very different – no voice, no problem; business as usual. I’ve written before about how SL is a great leveller, (28-01-11 ‘You Can Do It’), capable of overcoming obstacles that in RL may be significant, and SL is equally able to smooth over the little glitches in life that can be a real pain in the butt when it comes to the practicalities of everyday life. The broken leg that may temporarily incapacitate us in the real world; the occasional work or home drama and upheaval; the changes in circumstance that cause us endless difficulties in our daily affairs; or indeed, being rendered incapable of speech without warning, may barely register on on the virtual horizon, whilst causing us great difficulty in the real world.
Of course, there will be some who wish that I could be rendered incapable of speech inworld too – and who can blame them? – but I’m afraid that as long as my throat and fingers remain separate entities, whilst I can still type you’re still not going to succeed in shutting me up!
And, let’s face it – I’m far too nice to mute, anway!
People talking without speaking,
People hearing without listening,
People writing songs that voices never share
And no one dared
Disturb the sound of silence.
Simon & Garfunkel – The Sound Of Silence