Last week I had a conversation that has yet to escape my attention. It was with my uncle, Dennis Scholl, and he was telling me about the future. Rarely do I ever value guidance from those older than myself when it pertains to what’s “trending”. However, he has always been involved in much more progressive circles than myself. And more often than not I feel as though I’m just a few steps behind when talking to him.
The conversation was about blogging – an activity which some of you may know I indulge in. More specifically, we were talking about what makes a good post, and the most effective ways to share content. My uncle manages a few different websites and blogs for his different projects and endeavors, and as of late his focus has been to upload as much video content as possible. And for a good reason too. It is because predictions suggest that by the year 2018, 90% of online content will be video.
This staggering percentage caught me off guard and, due to becoming so involved in my writing work over recent months, I found the statistic almost threatening. As if I were to be replaced. I countered the information by explaining how I find the writing accompanied by pictures an irreplaceable form of communication. To which he so matter-of-factly responded, “that’s great, but you’re going to be left behind.” Even though I didn’t want to, I knew felt he was right.
So from now on I’m going to try to include more video content, which is a whole other art form. I’ve done a few video projects before (which you can find in the Visual section of my blog), but none in the raw style I’ll likely be going forward with – a mixture of pictures, writing, and video side by side. And for my first attempt, I thought I’d try describing my temporary home in Kensington, London.
I’m studying in London. Kensington to be exact. A central area of the metropolis where birds may still be heard chirping. It is white. Long streets horizontally stacked with homes who’s hand painted street numbers are their only distinguishable difference. My street is Queen’s Gate road. A host to little more than a privileged few and third world embassies.
The culture is privilege. It is not a place of authenticity, but refinement. Streets empty and local businesses quite – rarely have I found such a place where a feeling of solitude offers the same of safety. I’ve yet to see a child playing in the streets with friends, or any signs of residential neighborhood activity for that matter. At the same time though, when your neighbor is the Iraqi Embassy and Foreign Defense Headquarters, what would you expect?
Gloucester tube stop is only a few blocks south. And that station is my launch point to the neighborhoods where London has a heart beat. The areas I’ve explored such as Camden, Soho, Shoreditch and others all have personalities. Ways to seduce people in, hook them with a connection. Bustling food markets, vintage clothing stores, old pubs, or attention pulling buskers – everything can be found. And everything found at it’s finest.
The block north of me is the park, Hyde Park. London expansive green grounds on which all walk of life enjoy the calming presence of nature. It is calm there. And a book seems the most appropriate company. Men sail remote control boats across the ponds while women watch their children playing amongst the birds – whose affections are stolen indiscriminately by bread crumbs. Though deep within the parks center, no signs of the urban madness surrounding you are present.
I’ll ask myself, “why?” whenever I’m sitting in my room. And because of that I often find myself in the park or on the tube. Such cities intimidate me because there is no way to conquer. Like Manhattan, even a lifetime of exploring wouldn’t be enough to matter. They change at such a rapid pace it’s near impossible to keep up. But, as long as I have the energy to do so, I will try to stay afloat.