Green Ears

If you live in Edinburgh you may have noticed little green ear-shaped signs attached to lampposts around the Leith area. There’s one at the bottom of Leith Walk, outside the Mermaid chip shop, above the sign talking about the drinking ban in the area.

If you’re like me you’ve probably thought “A green ear, that’s a bit odd, I must find out what that’s about” and then promptly forgot about it once you’re ten feet further down the road. But fate has intervened and I found the answer while idly surfing in an effort to avoid work.

The answer, it seems, is [murmur]:

[murmur] is an audio documentary project that collects and presents stories set in specific locations in Edinburgh (in this instance, throughout the area of Leith), as told by the residents of Edinburgh themselves. Ear-shaped [murmur] signs bearing a telephone number and location code mark the places where stories are available for listening. Use the map to find the story locations, and then use your mobile to call the number, enter the location code, and listen to [murmur] stories while you explore the space where the stories took place.

and just in case you think there’s some sort of premium phone rate scam going on:

Alternatively, you may also listen to the stories on this website by clicking the red dots on the map.

Interesting idea, I’ve listened (via the web) to the foot of Leith Walk one and it’s someone reminiscing about their childhood and what the area was like. Interesting, but not terribly ground breaking. I’m surprised they haven’t gone all Web 2.0 and allowed people to upload their own anecdotes but I guess they’re it’s more an art project than a web doodah.

Still it’s worth listening to if you don’t know much of the history of the area. And if you were confused by the green ears, now you know.

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