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Original Essays | September 4, 2014

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10 Remote Warehouse Self Help- General

The Chairs Are Where the People Go: How to Live, Work, and Play in the City


The Chairs Are Where the People Go: How to Live, Work, and Play in the City Cover




1. Peoples Protective Bubbles Are Okay


I hear people complain that, for instance, in this city, people dont say hi on the street or make eye contact on the subway. And people try to remedy this problem by doing public art projects that are meant to rouse the bourgeoisie from their slumber. But thats ridiculous! Its perfectly reasonable for people not to want to see your dance performance when they are coming home from work. People are on the subway because theyre getting from one place to another, and for all you know, theyre coming from a job that involves interacting with lots and lots of people, and going to a home where theres a family where theyre going to interact with lots more people. And the subways the one place where they can have some quiet time, get some reading done, not have to smile, not have to make eye contact. Thats what a city is: a city is a place where you can be alone in public, and where you have that right. Its necessary to screen people out. It would be overwhelming if you had to perceive every single person on a crowded subway car in the fullness of their humanity. It would be completely paralyzing. You couldnt function. So dont try to fix this. There is no problem.


Copyright © 2011 by Misha Glouberman and Sheila Heti

Product Details

Glouberman, Misha
Faber & Faber
Heti, Sheila
Mind & Body
Acting & Auditioning
Philosophy : General
Instruction & Study - Techniques
Edition Description:
Trade paper
Publication Date:
8.25 x 5.5 x 0.5 in

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The Chairs Are Where the People Go: How to Live, Work, and Play in the City New Trade Paper
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Product details 192 pages Faber & Faber - English 9780865479456 Reviews:
"Publishers Weekly Review" by , "The city in question is Toronto, where Glouberman lives and plies his trades as instructor in improvisation and charades, and artistic impresario. These plainspoken, idiosyncratic essays, transcribed by Heti, a friend and fellow organizer, of their lecture series Trampoline Hall, coalesce cozily around the patient, earnest, well-intentioned voice of the speaker. Doled out is sanguine, youth-oriented advice such as how to make friends in a new city ('It's useful to identify what you like to do'), why going to parties should be fun and constructive, and the importance of placing chairs as close to the stage as possible ('Everyone should know these things'). The platitudes are self-explanatory, but prove so understated as to be frequently hilarious. Examples are observations on manners and teaching an audience to ask good questions ('What I warn people against is feelings of pride'). During the long-winded account of how he formed a neighborhood residents' association to block the opening of noisy bars, Glouberman concludes with a healthy endorsement of compromise — a realization that surprised even himself. Eliminating antagonism is one of the author's pets, as well as learning how to be decisive (like when quitting smoking) and simply accept unhappiness as an ongoing state of striving. As part of his work, he shares many tips on playing charades and easing communication with other games, like play fighting; overall, he dispenses the nondidactic wisdom of an avuncular sage. (July)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.
"Synopsis" by ,
Should neighborhoods change? Is wearing a suit a good way to quit smoking? Why do people think that if you do one thing, youre against something else? Is monogamy a trick? Why isnt making the city more fun for you and your friends a super-noble political goal? Why does a computer last only three years? How often should you see your parents? How should we behave at parties? Is marriage getting easier? What can spam tell us about the world?

Misha Gloubermans friend and collaborator, Sheila Heti, wanted her next book to be a compilation of everything Misha knew. Together, they made a list of subjects. As Misha talked, Sheila typed. He talked about games, relationships, cities, negotiation, improvisation, Casablanca, conferences, and making friends. His subjects ranged from the sublime to the ridiculous. But sometimes what had seemed trivial began to seem important—and what had seemed important began to seem less so.

The Chairs Are Where the People Go is refreshing, appealing, and kind of profound. Its a self-help book for people who dont feel they need help, and a how-to book that urges you to do things you dont really need to do.

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