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john davies
notes from a small vicar
from a parish
in Liverpool, UK

    Tuesday, June 02, 2009
    Will Self on walking to work
    I've taken to long-distance walking as a means of dissolving the mechanised matrix which compresses the space-time continuum, and decouples human from physical geography. So this isn't walking for leisure - that would be merely frivolous - or even for exercise, which would be tedious. No, to underscore the seriousness of my project, I like a walk which takes me to a meeting or an assignment; that way I can drag other people into my eotechnical world view. "How was your journey?" they say. "Not bad," I reply. "Take long?" they enquire. "About 10 hours," I admit. "I walked here." My interlocutor goggles at me; if he took 10 hours to get here - they're undoubtedly thinking - will the meeting have to go on for 20? As Emile Durkheim observed, a society's space-time perceptions are a function of its social rhythm and its territory. So, by walking to the meeting I have disrupted it just as surely as if I'd appeared stark naked with a peacock's tail fanning out from my buttocks while mouthing Symbolist poetry.
    I'm working on my latest essay towards my MPhil/PhD and it's on 'other psychogeographers' (ie, not Iain Sinclair). Loving the fun of engaging with these joyous left fielders. Not least Will Self, quoted above from his book (the original article freely available online too, here).