This is Epth Nation

Epth is a state of mind, not a place. Reading this will give you a virtual drivers license in that state, but you'll still need to be 21 to purchase alcohol. And you can't get any there anyway, so stop asking.

Friday, September 29, 2006

Elevator Action

In my new job I get to ride a lot of elevators. Most of them are old and boring, but many new buildings, especially high-rises, have luxurious elevators designed to get riders to ooh and ahh at the shiny features. These new features look cool now, but in a few years they'll be as dated as Windows ME.

For example, last night I rode an elevator in a tall older building. The elevator had a voice in it that asked, "Going up?" when you got in it to go up. It then gruffly stated, "Going down" at you if you had the audacity to want to travel in a downwards direction. I don't know why it was so nice on one trip and so mean on the other. Maybe it had a split Genuine People Personality. Anyway, it must have seemed super-cool and almost futuristic 20 years ago, but now it's just unintentionally funny. The voice was so highly digitized it reminded me of those 80's video games like Gauntlet and Karate Champ. I kept waiting for it to say, "Shots do not hurt other players (long pause) yet."

The other day I rode one with a 15-inch screen right above the door. But as my co-worker pointed out to me, the only useful thing the screen shows is the current weather. The rest is advertisements for things that rich people would be interested in like designer drugs and investment portfolios. It's nothing but sensory assault, just like all new technology is these days. The current weather didn't even benefit us, since we had just come in from outside. That screen was just there to generate revenue and look cool. I guess it doesn't really pay to have an episode of Seinfeld playing for a 10-second elevator ride. Worthless.

Another elevator I ride has glass on either side that appears straight but is actually slightly curved, causing an infinite reflection stretching upward until you get really tiny and disappear into the ceiling. It's fun. This elevator has no screen or advertisements of any kind. I wholeheartedly endorse it, if you can find it.

Some buildings are so tall and pretentious that you have different elevators based on which floor you're going to. There's nothing more fun than getting on an elevator and trying to find button #6 when the buttons go from 21-30 while some guy in a tie scowls perplexedly at you. This should be outlawed. How hard is it to just build a building without making it unnecessarily hard on first-time visitors? Aren't these things taken into consideration? Are most architects just bored and looking for any way to trick a building up?

Elevators. They take you up, but they also let you down.


Post a Comment

<< Home