There is so much noise in the world, so the last thing I feel like doing is adding to it. I’ve always been quiet. Often described as shy. I hate that word. It implies it is my fault. Perhaps if everyone else would shut up for a second, they finally understand that I’m not shy. I’m loud and I’m noisy. I’m screaming at the top of my lungs, I fill the room with my chatter. You can’t ignore my booming voice and obnoxious monologues. But I’m waiting for someone to listen.
“Oh, Abigail, you are so quiet. You must have a lot going on in your head”, Sara once said to me at recess. Yeah, I’ve got a lot going on in my head. They are called thoughts, you dumb bitch. I’m sorry. Maybe I’m being unkind. I can’t help it. All my anger and annoyance remains inside, bouncing around. I tend to ‘lash out’ as I heard Milly tell Annie in Science. Quiet people tend to. Of course, Sara doesn’t mean no harm. She’s nice. People actually like her. She’s “approachable” as my mother says. God, I wish she’d shut up.
“Abigail, you should try being approachable. Stop scowling all the time. Then you wouldn’t be so shy“, my mother continuously crows. I rolled my eyes so hard they almost fell out my head.
Approachable is one the most offensive things a person could say about another. Apart from ‘non-threatening’. If you’re described as ‘non-threatening’ then you might as well find a bridge and jump off it. Then you wouldn’t be a threat.
I’m just sick of people telling me that I should “speak up or “don’t be so shy!” Maybe if you listened to me, you’d see that being quiet is a better way to be. For starters, mindless small talk can finally be eliminated. Instead of awkwardly attempting to make chit chat with someone you could not give two shits about, you can entertain those much more interesting thoughts in your head. Leaving someone to their thoughts is one of the most polite things a respectable person can do.
Of course no one does this. And I am unfortunately routinely forced into discussing trivial matters with those who I could not care less about. If only everyone would learn to shut up.
I am not suggesting I have all the answers, but a little bit of peace and quiet wouldn’t hurt. I mean it’d probably would solve most world issues. But we will never know. Society likes the sound of it’s own repetitive, monotone voice.
When you speak you only repeat what you already know. But when you listen you listen you learn something new. So shut up.
The only things I’ve learnt when listening to other people is that gluten makes Annie sick and Sara thinks Kim Kardashian is a feminist. I might have to cut my own ears off. They’ve been filled with so much saccharin soaked nonsense they could drop off any second.
So I’m only gonna ask you once more.
Shut Up ! is a short story told from the voice of neurotic high school student Abigail. Let me know your thoughts.