2017年1月13日 星期五

My Headphones, My Self 時尚身分兼具 耳機展現品味

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2017/01/20 第157期 訂閱/退訂看歷史報份
紐時周報精選 My Headphones, My Self為你在都市中隔出私人空間 耳機還兼具時尚、身分
In River and Jungle, a Test of Cyclists' Will陡坡、泥濘、鱷魚... 難度最高自行車賽「征服者之路」
My Headphones, My Self為你在都市中隔出私人空間 耳機還兼具時尚、身分
文/Jacob Bernstein

You see them on every block: people being propelled through their routines listening to their own individualized soundtracks, with the outside world serving as a stage set.

Headphones are now fashion statements. Status symbols. Fetish objects on par with luxury watches and limited-edition Nikes.



William Crosson, a 28-year-old executive recruiter and part-time DJ, wears V-Moda Crossfade Wireless headphones, a $270 set that looks like something a cyberhooligan might wear to a Berlin disco.

Alexander Gilkes, a member of Vanity Fair's best-dressed list and founder of the auction site Paddle8, wears $400 headphones made by Master & Dynamic.


亞歷山大.吉爾克斯名登「浮華世界」雜誌最佳衣著金榜,也是拍賣網站Paddle8的共同創辦人,戴著要價400美元、由紐約頂級耳機品牌Master & Dynamic所製作的耳機。

Martin Gaynor, a 27-year-old freelance app developer for the New York City Department of Parks and Recreation, wears Symphonized 2s, a pair of wood-covered, over-the-ear headphones that he bought on Amazon for $53.

"The wooden earthy look just seemed to complement the subdued classical look I have on a day-to-day basis," he said. "It just matched."

紐約市公園及康樂事務局的自由接案應用程式開發人員,27歲的馬丁.蓋諾戴的則是他在亞馬遜網站上以53美元購買的一對木質耳掛式耳機Symphonized 2s。


Don't forget the cultural bellwether Beyonce. In her "Lemonade" video last year, she belted out "Sandcastles," a ballad of a woman scorned, while wearing $550 Prymas.

Global headphone sales hit a peak of $8.4 billion in 2013, and two years later, that figure rose to $11.2 billion, according to the research firm Futuresource Consulting. The company predicts that sales will rise another $2 billion by 2018, meaning we have yet to reach Peak Headphone.


研究公司Futuresource Consulting指出,全球耳機銷售額在2013年達到84億美元的高峰,兩年過後這個數字上升至112億美元。該公司預估,2018年前銷售額將再增加20億美元,這意味著我們還未達到「耳機高峰」。

The combination of the iPhone and headphones in many varieties (in-ear, over-the-ear, shaped-to-your-ear and so on) gives city dwellers the ability to largely avoid an experience that was once arguably the whole point of living in the crowd — interacting with others.

In a fraught public sphere, headphones provide a measure of privacy. Those who fall deeply into a Spotify playlist or the latest installment of an addictive podcast enter a cocoon-like zone all but impenetrable to tourists, beggars and those do-gooders with clipboards.

"Headphones are the front line of urban social defense," said Julie Klausner, a comedian, actor and writer. "I'm introverted and socially anxious by nature. My worst nightmare is sitting next to someone on a plane or someone who wants to strike up a conversation on an elevator."








此外,earphones也指的是耳機的意思,無論是headphones或earphones,通常都使用複數型態,還有要注意的是,中文所說的「戴」,英文會用動詞wear來表達,而近年來流行的可穿戴裝置,英文即為wearable device,例如智慧手表(Smart Watch)、智慧眼鏡(Smart Glasses)健身追蹤器(Fitness Trackers)、穿戴式相機(Wearable Camera)等等。

文中片語on(a)par with意指「等同於、與其相當」,on 後面也可以加個冠詞 a,介系詞with後接人或事物,例句:He is on(a)par with his brother in intelligence.他的智力跟弟弟不相上下。

In River and Jungle, a Test of Cyclists' Will陡坡、泥濘、鱷魚... 難度最高自行車賽「征服者之路」
Juliet Macur

Just keep moving. Even if only an inch forward. That's the key.

How else would cyclists riding in La Ruta de Los Conquistadores — a mountain bike race marketed, quite reasonably, as the world's toughest — make it to the finish line in one piece? How else would they conquer a merciless route that includes steep climbs, choking humidity, muddy jungle trails and swift-moving rivers that may or may not contain the occasional hungry crocodile?



But first things first: If they did not press forward, how would they get off this bridge?

The course on this, the third and final day of La Ruta, was flat, and the finish line beckoned from a soft-sand beach less than 20 miles down the road. But first there was a cruel twist. Before they reached the beach, competitors had to traverse railroad tracks that crossed several high bridges like this one, with murky rivers swirling ominously below their unevenly spaced wooden ties.



The ties could be rickety, or slick with oil, or set wide enough apart for a human body to slip through — or all three. To cross, hundreds of cyclists had to carry their bikes, or roll them, as they stepped gingerly, silently and in single file, as if in a church procession.

Not everyone could handle the stress. One racer near the front of the pack dared to look down between the wooden ties and froze, immediately creating a backup of riders who wanted nothing more than to keep moving, if only an inch, because momentum helped their balance. The rider, a Costa Rican, needed to be rescued by a wooden cart that was kept handy to ferry "chicken people who don't want to walk," said the race's founder, Roman Urbina.



But as the cart rolled away and the bottleneck cleared, the real question about the race was not how the riders would complete it.

It was: Why did they start it?

In the early days, according to Urbina, the race started at the Pacific Ocean and went clear across Costa Rica to the Caribbean Sea, following a compilation of routes taken by Spanish conquistadors in the 16th century. But this country — famed for its raw beauty, with its lush foliage, multicolored macaws and fog-covered mountains — has grown much since La Ruta's debut race in 1993. More buildings. More highways. More cars. More of everything, it seems, and that has meant fewer ways for cyclists to go all the way from coast to coast without bumping into something impassable for a person on two wheels. The race this year was a total of 135 miles, about the length of a long stage of the Tour de France. But it is the terrain, not the distance, that makes La Ruta so painful.




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