Wednesday, August 18, 2010

the commuter's chorus

A cocoon of sorts. With a soundtrack, the train ride is transformed. A leg movement, brushing hair away from eyes, a glance outside or more truthfully, depending on time of day - at night the windows become mirrors - a glance to a reflection, yours or someone else's; these all become intimate, grandiose or hilarious happenings. Opening a bag, folding a newspaper, fiddling on a phone: curating personal music choice irrevocably weaves atmospheric power over what is otherwise an ordinary occasion. But then, train rides are never truly quiet, even without music, though the silence of drained peak hour commuters of the inner city suggests the contrary. Omnipresent high pitched wailing, whether from closing doors or simply a bodiless train whine; train wheels comfortingly beat ceaseless rhythms against the tracks, entrusted with your safety (no permission slips), consistency and reliability the only stipulation of this unwritten contract. A murmured excuse, apologies, may I sit here, other polite mumbles between passengers who eschew eye contact - connecting bums with seats the main priority - join the commuter's chorus.

1 comment:

  1. Once I was riding from Britomart to Mr Albert. At the Newmarket stop, a man got on and he had long red hair and a beard and one of those earrings that is a black spike. He had chainmail on under a tunic and had a helmet and a lance and a wooden shield. He had a sling bag which had a baby in it.

    He had a friend too. His friend was wearing a black hoodie and jeans. They were talking about the transcendental capabilities of mmorpg's. He said, "The entire world is already in your head man. Sure, it's there in your little box. But it's also playing out IN YOUR BRAIN! Fuck the computer screen. When I'm killing orcs. I AM KILLING ORCS!"

    They got off at the same stop at me.