It's Quiet..... Too Quiet.

I am referring to the fact that Daughter isn't here and instead still sunning herself in Thailand, chasing elephants, white water rafting and avoiding the tigers and snakes. However, the line itself appears to have much older origins....

Most of us remember it (or more likely falsely remember it) from an old Cowboy film.  

It seems like the sort of thing John Wayne would say to one of his posse when they're entrenched in the bottom of a valley with the 'injuns on all sides of them and about to loose a scalp. They'll have been there for days with the wagons in a circle and the rations running low. John Turns to his sidekick (BillyBob or JohnBoy or something similar) and says...  "Well I don't like it. It's quiet. Jus' too damn quiet" probably.  Followed shortly by a whoopin' and a hollerin' as the attack starts, only to be sorted out by John (or Tex as he's most likely called) and everyone get's to fort thingamebob just in time for a slap up supper of beans with re-fried beans and a shot of whisky...

Wasn't that how it went??  Must have been around 1955 I should think.

But thats not it. Marcel Duchamp, the French surrealist artist, famous for making a toilet into art, is quoted as having used it in New York in January 1920 when he said "One doesn't drink here anymore and it's quiet, too quiet". He was of course talking about the Noble Experiment. This was a completely bonkers nuts idea where the United States government introduced the 18th amendment to their constitution which saw the sale, manufacture and transportation of alcohol banned in their country and is more commonly remembered as "Prohibition".

A lack of vino collapso would certainly make things quiet and that's not necessarily a bad thing. Would it work today? I suspect it would have a very similar effect as is did in the 1920's. The criminal underworld would make a lot of money and we'd see a rise in organised crime. This is ultimately what stopped prohibition in the first place. The st. Valentines day massacre in 1929 sickend the general populous and by 1933 the 21st amendment repealed the 18th.

But that's not it. In 1859 William Douglas' account of the Battle of Balavlava, the crimea which took place on October the 25th 1854 there is the following quote:

"The cavalry standing at their pickets, in front were the four redoubts occupied by the Turks on a range of low hills, crossing the plain from beneath the heights of the plateau to the opposite ridge near the village of Kamara. The Turks are lying lazily smoking around the guns, all so quiet - too quiet - it was only the lull before the storm, which speedily burst."

A fascinating place especially when you find out about it's secret underground submarine base, and strange hat wearing traditions. Ok, so I'm not being wholly honest. The hat wearing was a direct result of this battle. During their time stationed in the Crimea, British troops were sent knitted hats in the style that today we call a 'Balaklava'. Known and loved by bank robbers and terrorists all over the world this headgear was originally designed for warmth and not concealment.

With one of those on your head it most definitely is quiet..... Too quiet.....

Mostly because normal people don't talk to nutters in balaclavas. The could be up to anything under there.... Or perhaps just keeping warm, which is something daughter most definitely doesn't need to be doing.

This post originally appeared here: Posterous