Danica Tran, Student Contributor

I open my eyes to a gray sky. The skin under my collar itches as it flashes red, blue, red, blue. Counting. I dress in my normal work attire. Gray skirt, gray blouse, black shoes. It begins to rain as I drive to work.
My mother used to write to me about radio. It was filled with words. Talking, chit-chat, singing. My car is silent. I glance out of the misty windows at the flat, brown land around me. She used to write to me about trees, too. My collar flashes. Red. Blue. Red. Blue.
I notice the deafening silence in the office. Work productivity has raised tremendously ever since the laws were passed.
Of course, speaking is necessary sometimes. Even Congress realized that. 500 words per day. Just not enough oxygen to support any more than that.
Red. Blue. Red. Blue.
Breathe in. Breathe out.
After eight hours, I am back in my house. I dial his number. He answers.
“I love you. I love you. I love you. I love you…” I repeat 165 more times as my collar flashes yellow. He is silent. I suppose he used his words for today. We stay on the phone until curfew. Listening to each other breathe.
In. Out.
Red. Blue.