Hardly anyone has ever accused me of being fast. I’m attracted to Miles Davis ballads and other slow playing, I’m a slow traveler, and I fully endorse the erotic sensuality of slow food.
So, when I heard about Slow Cities, or Cittaslow, I immediately left and took a nap.
I read all about it when I awoke. Introduced to the concept by Rebecca Helm in a blog post called Slow Talking, I found out that Slow Cities were all about larger pedestrian zones, land use that reflects the needs and desires of humanity rather than being zoned to favor the cost and tax-slashing monstrosities erected by the tyrannical titans of commerce, and other rational slow-think.
I rejoiced. But the best was yet to come, when I read the CittàSlow Charter:
The towns and cities which embraced Slow Food principles are now coming together to form an international network of Cittaslow. These cities will undertake similar experiments, and abide by a shared code of conduct which stresses the importance of the quality of the fabric of life in their local areas, as well as (of course) good food, wine, and extending hospitality to visitors (temporary residents).
It seems to me that while Italians find it as hard as I do to put up with the current US attempts at worldwide political hegemony, they are slowly coming ‘round to the understanding that most people who buy property in Italy have done so in order to embrace this rapidly disappearing, slow Italian lifestyle in a way that we can’t in our own countries. In that sense we reinforce what’s traditional in Italian culture. Folks like Luca understand what is at stake:
I think that those who come here from other countries, buying some businesses and living here, they have done this because the environment pleases them, but also the style of life. You don’t think of coming here to live like an American.
Read the whole post at Foreign Remarks: Slow City, Slow Talking. The interview with Luca is top notch stuff. It’s nice to be wanted.
(On the other hand, maybe not everyone in Italy is like Luca. Some Italians like life in the fast lane. Maybe they can come to the US and do like we do, lining up at the Outlet Mall for hours because the Donald Duck Tea Set is going on sale, or lining up to go real slow on the highways because in the freedom-loving US each of us does own the whole goddam highway. That’ll teach ‘em. Italians’d have to go to school to learn how to line up. And they’d never be able to afford the adsurd cost of US higher education…)