Monday, May 26, 2008

Pearls Before Breakfast

Wikipedia is basically amazing. I don’t know how people survived without it. I was reading online when I saw the word "busking" used, and being who I am, I traveled through a wiki page before getting a link to this article, which is HIGHLY worth you reading (warning: this article is over 8 normal pages long, for you reading-averse readers).

Basically, a world-class violinist performed in the subways station in downtown DC, for free. His concerts have tickets that go for over a hundred for a seat, but of the 1100 people that walked past him over the course of 40 minutes, only a handful stopped, and only a handful appreciated the performance of one of the greatest musician of our time. The Times interviewed many of the people afterwords, and even people that were in line for multiple minutes right next to him didn't not, by and large, remember anyone standing there.

I found the article to be excellent - its description of how a mother prevented her child from staying even though the child was captivated by the music was interesting, though it did seem at points like the author was pushing the child card a little bit too hard.

But the real interesting thing was that this article turned into an amazing article about the meaning that is attached to so many lives today: it took the concept of the beauty around us and gave at least me a feeling that they were talking about the real meaning to commuter life which those 1037 people have. The quote which really amazed me was from Edna Souza, a shoe-shiner who was working nearby and was answering why she thought so few people noticed or cared as they walked by, and she answered;
"People walk up the escalator, they look straight ahead. Mind your own business, eyes forward. Everyone is stressed. Do you know what I mean?""
Makes you actually think...

No comments: