Liner notes for Ci-tee Boy by Entisical Work, written by Isaac Cotton, October 2nd, 2021.
THIS IS a day in the city, and a night in it, too. It is a city cycle.
THE CITY cycle was first theorized by A.D. Beirut (this is usually regarded as a pseudonym), member of the Communiqué de Tonelle, which published a self-titled pamphlet in France in the summer of 1956. It describes an idealist, structural cycle that the city is to follow, in order to ensure the maximum satisfaction of its citizens. The weekday, working cycle is as follows:
I. The Sunrise. The morning would begin at the rising of the sun to ensure natural circadian rhythms are being followed. The subcycle splits into two portions: "Quiet", and "Motivated". In the whole cycle, it is essential that cities maintain as quiet a volume as possible during the "Quiet" period to allow citizens to arise from their sleep unpreturbed. Only in the "Motivated" period can city administration begin, and only then in a gradual manner. Noisy upkeep such as street sweepers and construction would not begin until this "Motivated" period was in full swing.
II. Morning Commute. In Beirut's view, commutes are a 'natural stressor' in one's daily life. He says that this should be encouraged rather than shied from, as in an ideal landscape, it is the 'dichotomy of contentment' within the rest of one's life, as for anyone to feel happiness or joy, one must also feel stress, anger, and sorrow.
Beirut encouraged this 'necessary stress' to be shared rather than isolated, as mutual commiseration can strengthen the bonds between the citizens of a city and allow each other to engage in a mutual identity. Thus, the use of personal vehicles, such as cars and bikes, are highly discouraged by Beirut, who favored public transport or walking.
III. Work. Beirut encouraged a workday of no more than six hours, with at least a two-hour lunch break in between. He envisioned an 'adjustable schedule' where employers would be compelled to accomodate the natural tendencies of their workers. If a worker was most effective in the morning, then their schedule would reflect more time at work earlier in the day. (Ci-tee Boy reflects a worker schedule in which the afternoon and early evening are the most productive periods of the day.)
Beirut, and by extension, the Communiqué de Tonelle, would advocate further for workplace democracy in future documents, however they would not be published outside of the northwestern region of France until shortly after the dissolution of the Soviet Union in 1994.
Work itself was to have periods of productivity alongside periods of leisure. Employers were to provide 'pleasurable pursuits' that workers could engage in without fear of reprisal. This is one of the cycle's most controversial elements, counterargued at length by such contemporary socialist philosophers as Donald Harkin and L. Matthias.
IV. The Evening. The cycle encourages social behavior after work, especially at the end of a 5-day week. (Ci-tee Boy reflects a Friday schedule in which the worker goes out to drink at night.) Drinking is highlighted as being a particularly useful source of social bonding, however earlier drafts included using recreational drugs such as marijuana and powdered cocaine as equally desirable activities.
V. Nightly Tasks. The pamphlet describes the city doing its main upkeep during the evening leisure periods. Street sweepers would be utilized during this time, as would communal office upkeep, janitorial services at public utilities, electrical maintenance, and so forth.
Naturally, the question arises as to who would do these things during a designated period of leisure. Beirut theorized the concept of 'compulsory city service', wherein those between the ages of 20 and 22 would serve as these maintenance workers. They would be paid handsomely via the city's taxes, and have free access to education and specialized leisure activities during the day, that would be off-limits to those who have not completed the compulsory service. They would also have some choice in what sort of 'work' they are designated to (though that would never free them of doing some sort of 'hands-on' work) and they would have increased democratic say in their maintenance activities.
This, Beirut believed, would encourage citizens to not only gain an appreciation for those who clean up after their city, but also encourage them to be mindful themselves, and make efforts to keep their city clean and give the maintenance workers an easier job.
Despite the radical ideas written within the cycle, it never saw prominent usage within city planning, likely due to its incompatibility with Western economic theory. It remains languishing in obscurity.
one of the ogs in the vaporwave scene, and this album has aged like fine wine. love the nostalgia it gives me while listening to this thing especially with the track "beachwalk" since it was my intro to vaporwave. an underated classic that will always get my praise. dynamtic