Thursday, 29 March 2012

Carfree: Will Self

The lugubrious sesquipedalian writer and psychogeographer wrote about how he switched from being a petrolhead to carfreedom in an article in ES magazine a while back. (Final proof I’ve cracked my addiction to motoring, Will Self, Evening Standard, 29 April 2008). He wrote, “When I contemplated a life without a car of my own I feared not simply that I would be unable to do everything I wanted to do in the city, but that, like an amputee, I would still find myself trying to flex - or drive - a muscular appendage that was no longer there. Not a bit of it.” He has also covered the same topic, on how he now prefers a walk to a drive, in Walk, the magazine of the Ramblers Association. Appropriately, Self’s book Psychogeography provides a walking-related definition, cited by, for the word anoesis, a state of being without conscious thinking. “Normally, on my long-distance walks, anoesis descends within a few miles: the mental tape loop of infuriating resentments, or inane pop lyrics, or nonce phrases gives way to the greeny-beige noise of the outdoors.” Probably not such a good idea for the urban walker.

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