When conversations turn shrill
I have had all sorts of responsibilities in my life that require me to wear a whistle. At one time or another, I have been a crossing guard, a lifeguard or a coach. I generally like wearing a whistle, because it is one of the quickest ways to get someone’s attention when you really need to do it. At times, I have been known to catch “whistle envy” where one indescribably desires the feel of a whistle around one’s neck.
The whistle affords a certain power, as we generally pay deference to its warning call. However, do we pay attention because we assume that something important is going to happen or because we want the thick sound of annoyance to stop?
Yet it seems that some conversations happen as people desire to use the shrillness of a whistle as a standard tone of speech. My own attitude towards the shrill conversations is to back away and find people who seem to be more interested in having a conversation than simply being the loudest whistle in the room.
What do you think? Do conversations turn shrill because of their importance, because of someone’s desire to be heard, or a bit of both?