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Re: [carfree_cities] Tranquil public transport

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  • Simon Baddeley
    Dear Bill You old crusty! It is obvious that musak and all its accompanying joys will be siphoned into any space that offers a means of reproducing and
    Message 1 of 2 , Sep 2 9:56 AM
      Dear Bill

      You old crusty! It is obvious that musak and all its accompanying joys will
      be siphoned into any space that offers a means of reproducing and
      strengthening the relationship between consumer and commodity - especially
      if the consumer power of those in that space is increasing either because of
      the numbers in it or their income or both.

      The alternative is the constant bombardment of state propaganda in a
      dictatorship.

      That said I think it is possible to resist by seeing it as one's duty to
      express a view on these matters whenever possible. Thus I have seldom
      hesitated to ask people not to use their phones in phone-free carriages and
      will write to the train company concerned if more than unusually annoyed by
      this. I use a mobile phone regularly but can turn it off, use a silent
      vibrating signal and know how to talk quietly in those places where phones
      are allowed. I also know how to turn off the beeps on my lap-top. I have
      often asked people with noisy phones where they buy those old sets as I
      didn't know they were still selling them while I'm not averse to politely
      offering advice to people with noisy computers with words like "Of course
      when you're knew to these things they can be a bit fiddly but you'll soon
      get the hang of it." You can guess what an extremely irritating old fellow
      I am, though I am relentlessly polite and often find my interventions
      approved with a nod or a subsequent complement by people who didn't dare say
      anything at the time.

      I'm also not stupid and hope that I recognise situations that are too
      life-threatening to do anything but avoid or accept.

      If musak or info-tainment comes on buses or trains that I have to travel
      on - rather than cycle or walk - I'm confident that a mix of individual and
      collective action by the intelligent classes to push us towards the airline
      solution that enables the person who wants to listen to have headphones with
      the default condition being relative silence.

      I do think that anti-consumerism has to be seen as a positive challenge
      rather than a depressing irritant. We do after all live in an economy that
      depends on consumption and until between us we invent a better ways of
      organising ourselves we have to live the life of political animals.

      I still think it will be less easy to get at me when I'm walking and cycling
      which is why I'm so glad that rather late in life I discovered these as
      perfectly reasonable ways of getting around rather than solely a form of
      recreation.

      Simon


      ----- Original Message -----
      From: Telfer <telomsha@...>
      To: <carfree_cities@yahoogroups.com>
      Sent: Sunday, September 02, 2001 3:51 PM
      Subject: [carfree_cities] Tranquil public transport






      Travelling to work by train, underground or bus, even if sometimes crowded
      has always bestowed the benefit of being able to relax with a book,
      newspaper or your own thoughts.

      Not for much longer if the market researchers, PR and admen have their
      way-which of course they will given the shape of society as it is now and
      becoming more so.
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