Another forgotten book title.
March 9, 2005 2:44 PM   Subscribe

Help me remember the name of a book about walking...

I heard the author interviewed on NPR in 1997 or 1998, I think. I think he was a professor (and I want to say he was from Harvard or another Boston-area school).

He wrote about how we don't pay attention when we walk. The one tidbit I remember is that he went for a stroll and consciously tried to notice things around him, and one thing he observed is that every telephone/light/utility pole in the country is labeled with its own unique number.

I want to read this book. Anyone know what it is?
posted by mudpuppie to Writing & Language (6 answers total)
Sounds also like a posted MetaFilter thread.
posted by thomcatspike at 3:00 PM on March 9, 2005

I haven't read it yet (it's in my wish list, though)... but your request made me think of The Path: A One-Mile Walk Through the Universe, by Chet Raymo.

Hope you find it... sounds like a great read!

(Aside: and speaking of utility pole numbers... I guess the folks over at Marginal Revolution are right: there _is_ a market for everything!)
posted by silusGROK at 3:21 PM on March 9, 2005

Response by poster: silusGROK -- that sounds like a good one, but I don't think that's it.
posted by mudpuppie at 3:27 PM on March 9, 2005

Sorry, mate... it was worth a try! Someone here is bound to know it, though!
posted by silusGROK at 3:29 PM on March 9, 2005

Best answer: I remember seeing the same (or similar) piece on tv- I think the person you're looking for is Harvard Professor John Stilgoe, whose classes involve walking around Cambridge paying close attention to the "built environment." His book is called Outside Lies Magic (amazon) . Hope this helps.
posted by hwickline at 4:10 PM on March 9, 2005 [1 favorite]

Response by poster: Bingo! Thanks so much, hwickline.
posted by mudpuppie at 4:29 PM on March 9, 2005

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