Been a bit of a gap here due to the fact that I have fighting a cold. (Head, nose and throat).
Drinking lots of water, sweating it out and rest has been the order of the last few days. Of course, giving the throat a bit of a break by talking the least possible has made me appreciate (once again) that listening is so important.
I ride the train in and out of town when I go into the city (Montreal, Quebec, Canada) , which is about once a week.
Today on the way back I noticed that about 2 out of 5 people were plugged into MP3 players and iPods. (This is good news for Podcasters!)
2 out of 5 are reading or snoozing, hope they don't miss their stop and the rest are having conversations.
Now some are loud and others more intimate.
Why am I telling you this?
Just to say that LOUD constantly, is annoying and to quite forces you to over consentrate to listen, which is very tiring.
Listening should not be work for your audience.
Speaking with some variation of volume, vocal infection, good tone and using pauses when intended is what makes dialog interesting and keeps the listener tuned into the conversation.
NOTE: 4 Cellular phones rang during the few minutes that I wrote this.
Boy are we plugged in or what?