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The Passage of a Few People Through a Rather Brief Moment in Time #352 - Pushing Product

05.18.16

One or more persons during a certain period drop their usual motives
for movement and action, their relations, their work and leisure activities,
and let themselves be drawn by the attractions of the terrain and the
encounters they find there.

It's a bike ride.

Started by user nathansnider and user theroyalacademy.

It meets every Wednesday at 8:30pm
at California Donuts #21.
We ride at 9pm.
While we endeavor to return before the last red line trains (around midnight),
it is generally not possible. Please plan accordingly.

On this bike ride, you might expect:
- inconvenient passageways
- oblique strategies
- Oulipian constraints
- disorientation
- reorientation
- "cover" versions of other people's rides, performed with amateurish enthusiasm
- amateurish enthusiasm
- playgrounds, pool halls, bowling alleys, karaoke
- geocaching
- full moon picnics
- traffic median tea parties
- rivers that no longer exist
- smell tourism
- Couchwick v2.0

Furthermore:
- usually 20-35 miles
- usually some hills
- a medium pace (probably not for beginners; certainly not a hustle)
- few stops, short stops
- but we're not in a rush; we don't need to run every light
- victory donuts!

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This week:

Pushing Product


Although Los Angeles is often thought of as a single industry town the place where movies are made, a "dream factory" tangible goods are really where the action is happening. Whereas the film industry generates about $10 billion annually, the manufacturing, wholesale, and retail sectors are each more than ten times that size. (Remember, as Yogurt said, it's merchandising where "the real money from the movie is made.") More than $1 billion worth of goods stream into the Port of Los Angeles every single day, much of it making its way on trucks or up the Alameda Corridor to vast fulfillment centers inland where it awaits our purchase. These nondescript megastructures are the interface between the very real products we buy and use and the virtual marketplace of the internet from which we increasingly purchase them. It's just another step in the evolution of the complex relationship between intangible desires and material fulfillment that typifies consumer capitalism.

This week we take a look back at some of the older architectural interfaces constructed to fulfill those desires. Unlike the distant warehouses of the present day, these buildings are visible presences in the city, are part of its fabric while also, each in their own way, turning their backs upon their surroundings, trying to stand apart. Their individual fortunes have risen and fallen throughout the years, many adapting to the times in order to avoid the wrecking ball. Some of the structures have been repurposed to different, less commercial ends. Others simply reconfigured their surfaces and spaces to reflect contemporary preferences. Some are mainly seen as gross expressions of happily bygone eras. Others have now acquired an air of quaint, old-timey charm. Yes, this week on the ride we shop around for shopping centers. We won't take American Express, but we will gladly accept whatever we can Discover.

(~20 miles, flat, paved; a low-key, mildly educational ride)

Oh, speaking of tangible goods, have you pre-ordered your cumulative map t-shirt yet?

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For the latest information about each week's ride, join our mailing list:
groups.google.com/group/the-passage-announcements

For more information about past rides, visit our website:
ThePassageRide.com

For miscellaneous images, information, and links, take a look at our tumblog:
thepassageride.tumblr.com

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Discuss






























































































































For example,
certain models of
one-man helicopters
currently being tested
by the US Army
will probably have spread
to the general public
within twenty years.
 


Posted by theroyalacademy