Sunday, July 29, 2018

whistling ... seriously

When I was in high school, there was one fellow I knew, Vladimir, who still took and practiced whistling. I was always amazed at the wonders he could concoct.

Who whistles any more? More pointedly, who whistles with a seriousness that entails practice?

A quick zip around Google suggests it's still out there, but the art and artifice has lost its social inroads.

One thing that came up in the Google tour that was sort of fun was this:  Why Do People Whistle.

I remember being taught by a fellow student, a Mexican chum, how to whistle loudly for a cab. It took a while to perfect and a lot of saliva dribbled down my fingers, but eventually I caught on. I never did learn how to expel classical music with whistles.

Ah, the lost arts.


  1. I failed in all efforts to whistle for any purpose. I shout to call my dogs.

  2. How on earth can someone living in Tiny Town with a population under 30,000 think that any sociological observation would be relevant for anything beyond sight up and down the road? My NYC neighborhood
    has about the same number of people. Yours has like 2 people per acre mine over 60 per acre.

    It’s hilarious viewing Northampton in Google Maps, there’s no one walking around on! Typical American suburb. Even the travel guide shows few people walking around. There must be some creative people around though, the Wikipedia entry makes the hamlet sound like a paradise.

    Anyway YouTube has a 50 video World Championship of Whistling series. Whistling talent pretty deep, but I didn’t like it. The contest permits background music.

    When I think whistling for Taxis these days I just use the whistle on my keychain. But lately I mostly use an App.

    Acme makes all sorts of whistles including dog whistles:

    Fox40 makes great, powerful whistles: Safety, Hiking and Sports.
    (My keychain whistle is a Fox40 Safety Whistle.)

    BTW There are seaman whistles audible through storms. I bought one of those years ago.

  3. The "Cheerful Whistling Permitted" sign was created by Australian artist Nick Bleasel.

    You can see more of my work at: