I love London and I love people watching. I’ve been in the big smoke since Wednesday and I thought I’d share my thoughts with you.
There are millions of people here, but this is a lonely city. Nobody speaks. Or smiles. Head down, hurry on. It’s like the polar opposite of Glasgow.
This morning I’m in Canary Wharf. Coming from Aberdeen, it’s like a different world! The tube was mental busy! People everywhere, packed to the gunnels, the ubiquitous iPod headphones on almost everyone. No-one talking, smiling, making eye contact. Quite sad really. What were they all listening to? I’d like to tell myself it was my interview with Scott Douglas on the Quiet News Day Podcast (no 47), but it probably wasn’t. At least not everyone.
Like busy little ants they all streamed out of the train and scurried into their towers, off to sit in front of a computer screen for 7.5 hours in service to the queen ant. When did we stop speaking to each other?
I’m now sat in a Costas, buried deep underground. And incredulously, in this always connected world, in the capital of high commerce, without a phone signal (cheers O2), no 3G, and no wifi. How does that work?
Ah, so that’s it. This is where people talk! Deprive them of their connectivity and they have to! It’s like some big social experiment. Big Brother, before Channel 4 got their hands on it! But still everyone ignores the guy on his own. Billy no mates.
Costas is full of people in business suits, looking important and talking intensely to one another. Buy! Sell! But at least they’re talking.
And me? Well, I’ve succumbed too. It’s dress-down day in our office at home, where i’d be in jeans & a t-shirt. But here I am, in the city that never sleeps, and I’ve got my suit on. I’ve even got a tie (I need to make a good impression this afternoon – big, BIG, opportunity!).
And when no-one would make eye contact or talk to me on the tube (they must have thought I was a fucking nutter!) I stuck my headphones in. And listened to QND 47. Quite like that guy McGill, sounds like a dude!