Americans live loud, and no I’m not just talking about their fluorescent orange nikes. I mean they are actually quite loud and speak frequently in public and private, to people they know and people they don’t. Where Australians might give each other knowing looks over the state of a public bathroom Americans can’t refrain from a comment of ‘awe man’ or ‘I know right?’. I’ve never had people comment on my shopping while I’m standing in line before and you know that odd person in a public space having a loud ‘discussion’ about all sorts of personal things? Here they’re just one in millions. And louder coz they have to compete with each other. I’ve been told it’s because so many people are sharing a small space and that the rule is that the few inches around your make for your own private estate and you can do whatever you want in that space and it’s no one else’s business.
I’m not saying it’s a bad thing, just different. We went to a gospel church in Harlem last weekend, it was loud too with their ‘amens’ and ‘can I get a witness’. We then went straight to the catholic cathedral for a tour on signs and symbology. The difference couldn’t have been more stark. While both are beautiful I found myself wondering how many unspoken or unrecognized emotions and devotions have been birthed from our restrained english ways. How many unrecognized opportunities to experience life in a big, bright, loud way? How many clenched jaws iron clad shut by decorum. Can’t say i’m about to have it out with Joel on the street corner but maybe I’ll get some fluoro shoes.
~ Heidi McKerrow ~
We just put up a bunch of the best NYC photos check them out here-