Promoting zero

Sometimes in a noisy world which tends to get immersed in all things present, I paused and thought ‘how about promoting the very absence of the thing that is present?’ I call it promoting zero. A few examples below:

The surreal presence of an empty billboard amongst a clutter of ads in a busy street, the respect conveyed by silence amidst a heated argument, the mute in the middle of a song which pleasantly suffocates, the comforting tastelessness of water after a full course meal, the weight in the pause before that defining statement of the speech, the striking stillness in pose that lasts after a Sachin Tendulkar straight drive, everlasting memory of that ad you saw which was aired to make no statement at all, the eternal glow you come across in a face that has conquered fear and reduced it to zero after battling it a million times before, the absence of wonder at the latest capitalism’s blunder, the deafening silence that fills a boisterous stadium before that penalty kick which decides the final,  the joy in imagined absence of media furore over the so-called gross injustice of living in the times of Justin Bieber, the eternal silence of the hungry kids who die with an empty plate in their hands, that conspicuous absence of a clear message in an abstract painting, the missing bite from the apple logo, that silent film “the Artist” which roared to fame, the colourless Galadriel in the Lord of the rings, the power of silence in response to a persuasive argument, the mystery of the black box, the despair and missing joy among the seven participants who lost to Usain Bolt, that Lincoln’s letter which was never posted, the hushed silence of the library which empowers, the absence of reality in the world of humans who google “Is Tom and Jerry real”, the silence which follows a gun shot, the nothingness when you stop thinking, the missing continuity whenever a long sentence ends.

Zero has no meaning without all the noise. It exists because of noise. However, promoting zero amidst all the noise can make zero sound the loudest and thereby it becomes the most influential. The strategy can sometimes be a pleasant change in a noisy world.

I would be very much interested in knowing where you observe zero in your lives or any new ideas regarding how zero promotion can be used for positive results. Do let me know.


5 thoughts on “Promoting zero”

  1. Really interesting post Bharadwaj, fantastic examples. I can notice zero at the moment between different feelings. Many emotional videos (movies, advertisements etc) use that zero moment to heighten the emotional condition of the viewer (of course for different reasons each).


    1. Thanks Vasileios. Exactly. Between any two thoughts there is zero. Like you said, I saw this movie where the protagonist loses a loved one and he walks out of the hospital into the street buzzing with traffic which we can see. But there is no sound at all for about 10-15 seconds. That really brought his state of mind chillingly. Suddenly there a screeching breaks sound and the protagonist is back in this world. I don’t remember the movie name but it was just awesome.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Great post. Another example I can recall is in the movies; when a grenade explodes near a soldier all sound is gone except that buzzing sound that tells you that something’s not right. Indeed pauses can serve as interludes to give strenght to the message.


    1. Yeah. It’s like a moment of confusion and chaos without much sound. True, especially in plays I have seen more use of pauses which serve as interludes. The message is always greater than its parts when silence is incorporated into it.


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