A Distracted City

18Apr09

“In a city, you are distracted by everything around… that you forgot about the people.” she said.

Indeed, a city is built to be seen, a visual showcase of wealth and power such that when you live in one you find yourselves more often than not looking up. Towering above you are skyscrapers, office towers, shopping malls, statues — the scale of things make you feel small.

If the vertical compression is not enough, you find yourself surrounded by crowds, cars, advertisements all around. You wish you had that little bit more elbow room to move, to think, but you are distracted by the sights around you. Should you move, or stay still? Either way, the barrage of the city weighs on all your senses and that is when you cave in.

But that is also when you learn its language and you find ways to ignore it. You build your own walls of resistance — listening to your iPod, taking short-cuts, ignoring what is around… and you forget the person next to you is doing the same as you.

The city squeezes more of us into the same space, but in doing so, puts just as much distance between you and I.

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