Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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Packing Peanut Chip Chime

playing the sound of silence
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While attempting to sculpt something artistic with packing peanuts, I noticed that the plastic* chips or S shapes seem to slightly tinkle and jingle** when tossed slightly in the cupped hand as if extracting change for a parking meter. The quiet dings and clings of suspended chips, freed of the palm’s insulating influence, might help to calm a soul jarred by the sirens, motors, bells, wails and whistles of modern life.

The chips can be tied with black threads*** to the looped end of a nearly straightened, large paperclip anchored in an eraser base. Placed over the air vent of a computer or car or hung over the rising current of air on a lamp**** their soft chiming would attend the slightest zephyr*****.

* the polymer foam peanuts that melt on contact with rubber cement not the cellulose ones that crumple next to wood glue

** maybe more since I seem to lack some high frequencies of my hearing - gladly missing the whistling that occasionally visits our radiators – probably caused by military rifle practice with only barrel-cleaning patches as makeshift earplugs or an earlier childish bad habit of popping paper bags behind unsuspecting brothers

*** or filaments taken from the hairbrush of a long-haired lover or pet

**** or even super-glued to the nose of a bed partner with a vibrating soft palate as snore accompaniment, “Ssshkniikkt chink tinkle ping ssschlikkkt tinkle jingle ding”

***** of course a microphone-amplifier-speaker chip could be added to make a chip-enhanced chip chime that magnifies the delicate dongs all the better enjoyed above the daily din.

FarmerJohn, Jun 30 2004

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       Can't says that I've ever heard any pleasant tinkling noises from those packing chips - probably because they've been drowned out by my own cursing!   

       I hate those $%%$$ things... Anybody who uses them for packing should be made to eat them - the mess they make, and when they find their way inside the objects being shipped 'cos the sender can't be bothered wrapping them....   

       So anything that uses up the world's supply of them is + by me
philmckraken, Jun 30 2004
  

       I think there may be a good idea in here, but I got lost in trying to piece all the footnotes into their proper place. Very confusing...
luecke, Jun 30 2004
  

       Yes, some of my idea descriptions demand almost too much of the reader.
FarmerJohn, Jun 30 2004
  

       I have noticed the tinkling sound that you refer to. It's not irritating like rubbing them together is, but I don't find it soothing either. I've been dissolving them in acetone lately, fishing out the blob from the bottom of the container, and sculpting the blob into various things. Last week I took two large styrofoam drinking cups and made two halves of a sphere then melted them together with leftover styrene and made a crude little ball. Like a table tennis ball only twice the size. Bounces like one, too.
Spare parts, Jun 30 2004
  
      
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