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October 5, 2007

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3) People hide behind technology, choosing
self-alienation over social integration. Cars
are obviously isolation units, but even sadder
was the young woman who stepped around the
set-up without acknowledging any human
presence. She had wires coming out of her
ears while texting away, using her virtual
reality bubble as an excuse to ignore her
real surroundings. High tech, low touch.

But for the most part it was a great
experience, with many other people stopping
to chat and dance. I'm looking forward to
doing it again and hope others will take it
to the streets. By giving away what's best in
us we can start to heal our moribund society.


I love it when a plan comes together. Today I combined my mania for spinning
              pop 45s on an old record player with my penchant for championing
              the carfree lifestyle by setting up an appreciation station on the
             sidewalk across the street from our home. The
            friendly Fremont Arts Council allowed me to plug
        into their power and set up on the broad walkway
     on Fremont Ave in front of their headquarters.
  The location was perfect as the uphill bikelane
  used by many commuters during the evening rush
  passes right by there. In addition to the music, I
 handed out free posters and Carbusters mags.
 Observations: 1) Cars are fucking loud. A line
 of motor vehicles idling at a red light is enough
 to drown out the sound of music. 2) Just because people
ride bikes doesn't mean they're not uptight. I was
surprised by how many actively ignored what was going
on. Staring straight ahead, about a third refused to return
smiles and waves. Is "thank you" really such an intimidating message? I know no one
owes me a greeting, but it is a sad sympton when people reflexively deny interaction.





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