The Alan Sondheim Mail Archive

September 6, 2005

the bee

this is difficult to explain. a small section of the original recording,
around 2 p.m. at silver lake, utah (elevation around 7000'). the apparatus
- vlf radio with six foot vertical antenna, minidisc recorder. anomaly:
the ground stake didn't seem to connect properly; i grounded the radio by
hand (i.e. touching the chassis).

the major sound: usual vlf 'static.' the major anomaly: the sound of a bee
flying near the radio chassis / ground and antenna wires / my hand holding
the ground. post-processing: the usual 80-100 db notch filter for 60 hz
and harmonics.

you can hear the sound of the bee, i.e. the wings of the bee. the bee is
in the air, the wings are in the air. either the bee generates radio waves
or the bee interferes with radio waves. the bee is not grounded, the air
was dry, i.e. not moist.

why should one hear the sound of a bee without a microphone, with only a
vlf antenna nearby?

later, a fly was heard as well, several times. and a smaller insect. but
not some other insects (that flew by as well).

( now thousands of miles away, last night, i was stung by a bee. this is a
warning. i am not to know: a. why bees interfere with radio waves. b. what
bees communicate in certain circumstances. c. why the particular site of
silver lake was chosen. d. why this hasn't been recorded elsewhere.
perhaps the site was protected by the bees. revelation: the sting (which
also of course killed the insect) was punishment. )

The Burrows

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