What is Seattle listening to?
Have you ever wondered what’s coming out of those ubiquitous white buds hanging out of all the ears in Seattle? On the 43 bus to UW, it’s a sea of white wires and the occasional bobbing head. I surreptitiously leaned to my left to pick up a little bit of the escaping sound from the guy next to me. Sounds like an accordian – something French, maybe? Tracks changed, and a slow, expressive violin solo carried over. I was so close to interrupting him to ask what it was, but I couldn’t bring myself to cut in to such a beautiful soundtrack to a dark fall morning. The young man across from me had his eyes closed, and I wanted to know if he was just grabbing an extra five minutes of shut-eye, or if he was happily drowning in an orchestral sea.
A man got on a crowded elevator here at work. He had a venti latte in one hand, and his CD player in the other. He had large, padded headphones on instead of the popular little earpieces. Some serious rock music was coming out of it – probably circa 1985 from the sound of it, and the volume was up to 11. We squished in to fit, everyone doing their best to stay out of anyone’s personal space, as we do here. And the beat went on. And the man closed his eyes. And then he started to take deep breaths through his nose, and slowly let it out as if in a relaxation exercise. To him, I’m sure it was the most inconspicuous personal moment of zen – but the rest of us were wide-eyed, and a couple people were starting to look uncomfortable. I brazenly broke the tension (completely unbeknownst to the breathing man) by saying, “I wish I had a gigantic coffee and my favorite music this morning!” And everyone laughed – but not loud enough to disturb his meditation.
So, what’s being piped in to you this week? If I saw you on the bus and had the nerve to ask you what you were listening to, what would you tell me?