Finally, some things shouldn't be made over because they're meant to be unadorned or even boring. Like silence. I want to hear Vivaldi's Four Seasons piped into a parking lot about as much as I want to eat gum off the sidewalk. It will come as a great surprise to a whole generation of iPod lovers that the whole point of silence is that it is, uh, silent. Time spent without the Black Eyed Peas or the Wu-Tang Clan will only make our subsequent time with the Black Eyed Peas and the Wu-Tang Clan that much more meaningful, no? If you've ever taken a filmmaking course or talked to a sound engineer, you may have learned that room tone—the basic hum of silence—varies slightly from place to place anyway. So why mess with nature? I could probably live the rest of my life in airports and hotel lobbies and elevators if only they didn't pipe in that awful new form of white noise known as CNN.

And one last thing that should be left alone: bad moods. Far be it from me to dis Zoloft and Prozac or any of the other prescriptions that have changed many a depressed person's life. But even the most balanced among us has the occasional bad patch, and that's as it should be. Life doles out days of simmering nausea and mild apprehension, minor pains and heartaches, not to mention days of actual trauma and hardship, because Life wants us to appreciate that a day without these obstacles—that is to say, most days—is a victory. A good day doesn't have to be marked by anything noteworthy or unusual. A good day can be one on which nothing memorable happened. A day on which nobody tried to change a single thing.

Next: Eckhart Tolle on the beauty of today


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