Urban Observation Report

1079 Words 5 Pages
Los Angeles is a place where people of different social backgrounds lead increasingly separate, parallel lives. Individuals from all social backgrounds participate in routine activities in micro-spaces throughout the city such as purchasing a cup of coffee or riding the bus to work. These people can be a student going to school or a senior citizen out on a stroll. Even though they may cross paths and share certain spaces on a consistent basis, that does not mean that they live identical lives. Instead, they come to embody the notion of leading increasingly separate yet parallel lives. Furthermore, difference matters in the places and spaces of the contemporary Los Angeles region and the kinds of interaction that occur in micro-spaces. Public …show more content…
People do not seem interested in speaking to one another. The seating pattern reinforces the desire, as passengers sit alone or keep a distance from each other when the metro is empty. However, when the metro is full, they still do not seem to interact despite the close physical proximity. The majority of people use their cellphones instead of talking with each other. Also, unlike on a bus where passengers can interact with the bus driver, the metro driver is withdrawn from the passengers. He/she is in a room where closed to the public by a locked door. To the limited interaction on the metro, there was the case of two young Latinos, a female and male, who were talking when they boarded the train at Artesia Station. They seem to be co-workers because they have the same uniforms. The young female sat next to an older African American male but did not speak or look at him and vice versa. We can see that difference in ethnicity and age plays a role in interaction occurring in micro-spaces. The two co-workers talked about their plans for the weekend and what they expect at work. However, the young female received a text on her phone and the conversation between the two stopped, and they got off at Anaheim Station together. The male put on his headphones and got on his phone while the female was busy on her cellphone. Meanwhile, another interaction was when a young African American male got on at Firestone Station and decided to sit next to me. He looks around, and I made eye contact with him. He asks me, “You trying to buy some weed homie?” I declined, and he then asks a Latino sitting in front of us if he smokes, he took off his headphones and said “Nah bro” and continued put his headphones back on. The equal status of two groups, which in this case is potential smokers influences the young African American’s decision to seek people that

Related Documents