Wednesday, July 05, 2006

The funeral procession

I went to Liverpool Street yesterday evening, to meet up with some friends. Haven't been into London for a while, and you forget quite how strange it is to see all these people looking so stressed.

It reminded me of something from Pirsig's ZMM:
After a while Sylvia sits down on the wooden picnic bench and straightens out her legs, lifting one at a time slowly without looking up. Long silences mean gloom for her, and I comment on it. She looks up and then looks down again.

"It was all those people in the cars coming the other way," she says. "The first one looked so sad. And then the next one looked exactly the same way, and then the next one and the next one, they were all the same."

"They were just commuting to work."

She perceives well but there was nothing unnatural about it. "Well, you know, work," I repeat. "Monday morning. Half asleep. Who goes to work Monday morning with a grin?"

"It's just that they looked so lost," she says. "Like they were all dead. Like a funeral procession." Then she puts both feet down and leaves them there.

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