It isn’t a bang, it’s a hum.
I went to a dinner party this summer, given by a gourmand friend with a knack for putting together shindigs that take off like a house on fire. The place was full of crazy-fun people, epic food, great music and an overall feeling of friendly inclusion.
It was a great night.
Then he walked through the door.
As is customary in this particular enclave, he greeted me with a much–longer–than–a–collision, slightly–shorter–than–a–slow–dance, bear hug.
And I felt it.
Let’s get this straight; the hum isn’t your garden-variety sexual attraction where your loins seize up in a mating cramp upon encountering a favorable genetic match. No, the hum isn’t about propagating the species, at least not that way. The hum is also not about looks, which, let’s be honest, is refreshing to say the least. The hum is something you feel before it even comes around the corner.
It’s the feeling that, if you had antennae, the hum would be all and everything those antennae would ever be about. You feel the hum in your whole body, not just below the belt. It’s a feeling that feels more like you’re picking up signals from other galaxies (don’t ask me how I know what that feels like) than almost anything else.
When you feel the hum, you wonder why you ever do anything or spend time with anyone where it isn’t present. You feel the hum and you remember your reason for living. You feel the hum and you’re singing from the mountaintops even in the Bonneville Salt Flats.
According to physicist John Cramer of the University of Washington in Seattle, our whole universe began with a hum. Based on his analysis of radiation left over from the Big Bang, Cramer discovered that the Big Bang didn’t sound like a bang at all—it sounded like a large jet plane flying one hundred feet over your house in the middle of the night.
The Big Bang was actually a deep hum.
And it’s still humming.
Right on down to the quarks and leptons in our very own bodies.
The hum is what connects us all. Gives us that feeling of belonging together. It’s the theme shared by fractals, financial markets and starling murmurations; everything complete unto itself, yet indivisible from the whole, repeating ad infinitum.
It’s that feeling of coming home.
I’ve lost count of how many nights and weekends, how many air miles I’ve spent, filling time and distracting my body, in search of that one feeling that echoes from the genesis of time.
How could I have ever believed that keeping busy and being productive or the excitement of sex and romance could ever compare to the spaciousness, the non-static settledness, the relief, of feeling the feeling I was feeling right now, wrapped up in this man I’d just met?
Suddenly, an already remarkable evening went into full–on sympathetic resonance.
You know that feeling, right?
When the two of you bring out the best in each other, easily, as if by magic? (Only it isn’t magic, it’s advanced physics linked to the deep hum of the big bang that is still resounding throughout the universe we call home.)
Of course you do.
Well, it was like that.
The hum is like that.
So, I asked myself. What’s the difference between Garden-Variety Sexual Attraction and The Big Bang, a.k.a., The Deep Hum? I came up with a list, which is in no way meant to be comprehensive. Here goes.
Garden-Variety Sexual Attraction vs. the Big Bang:
1. With garden-variety sexual attraction, once the passion’s gone, so is the relationship. With the big bang, sexual passion comes and goes but the hum hums on.
2. Garden-variety sexual attraction leaves you disoriented; you forget where you left your keys, your car, your underwear. Big bang sexual attraction puts you in the zone; you become a magnet for everything good in your life.
3. When you have garden-variety sexual attraction sex, it’s like having dinner at a Chinese restaurant; thirty minutes later you want sex again. When what you feel is the big bang, sex, or no sex, you walk around feeling perpetually satisfied.
4. Garden-variety sexual attraction is the urge to merge. With big bang sexual attraction, merging isn’t an issue, you pick up right where you left off fifteen billion years ago.
5. Garden-variety sexual attraction only happens with potential lovers. The big bang can happen with anyone and anything; friends, lovers, your dog, the guy serving your coffee, music, dusk up in Ojai. And it can happen even when you’re all alone.
6. When you feel garden-variety sexual attraction all you want to do is relieve yourself of the feeling. When you feel the big bang, you stop looking for a climax, in fact the climax becomes decidedly anticlimactic. You make love all night. And all day. And all night. And…you get the picture.
7. With garden-variety sexual attraction there’s a feeling something must happen or you will explode. With the big bang, there’s a recognition that you have now arrived at the place where it is all already happening. You have joined the cosmic love train.
And, just in case you’re in any way worried that big bang sexual attraction is well, unsexy, here’s another description of The Big Bang, this time from Mark Whittle, Professor of Astronomy at the University of Virginia: “[The Big Bang was]. . . a descending scream, building into a deep rasping roar, and ending in a deafening hiss. As if this were not impressive enough, the entire acoustic show is itself the prelude to a wonderful transformation: the highest pitch sounds ultimately spawn the ﬁrst generation of stars, while the deep bass notes slowly dissolve to become the tapestry of galaxies which now ﬁlls all of space.”