October 27, 2010 @ 10:56 am
Bangalore traffic (and I can’t seem to get enough of it) can be partially dealt with. Indeed. If you take more than an hour to get to your work place then one thing you can do to utilize all that commute time is listen to audio books on your phone or mp3 player. If you don’t take more than an hour to reach your workplace, you definitely don’t stay in Bangalore and can ignore the rest of this post. Unless, of course, you are a fan of my writings.
All you need to do is buy an audio book or download one from the hundreds of free AND legal versions available out there. While the audio versions of new books are relatively expensive, there are hundreds of classics which are in the public domain and are available for free download!
Legally free? Yes. Head over to OpenCulture and check out the catalogue there. The caveat is that only classics are available for free. But then, when were you going to sit down and start reading all the classics? Never. So it makes sense to be done with them while driving through all that mess of this city. If not anything, you definitely will come across as a well-read road-ragist.
I have finished two audio books in the recent past: Stephen Hawking’s The Grand Design and Lewis Carroll’s Alice in Wonderland. The Grand Design has been shared over at InGoodBooks.com.
I am now reading, er, listening to E. M. Forster’s A Room with a View. The only drawback I see (hear?) with audio books is that it is difficult to appreciate fine writing while listening to it. Sure, a book like Hawking’s can be listened to since the core there is the idea, the concept. In Forster’s book, for instance, the emphasis is more on the writing styles, the metaphors, the juxtaposition of prose over a poetic framework – all a tad difficult to infuse in your literary senses while you are avoiding potholes and other fellow motorists.
Nevertheless, an audiobook is worth giving your ear to. If not anything else, it will keep you well-insulated from those seemingly clever music radio stations and their mind-numbing RJs and the singularly inane music that they dish out in between screams of sponsor company names and equally mind-numbing advertisements. Enjoy, ladies and gentlemen.