I would like propose a new slogan for Munich: ‘Made you look’. See I recently read Paul Graham’s article on Cities and Ambitions, which I read a long time ago, loved then, remembered recently and loved again. In it, the writer describes from his personal experience the theory he developed that different cities send different messages to their citizens.
Power matters in New York too of course, but New York is pretty impressed by a billion dollars even if you merely inherited it. In Silicon Valley no one would care except a few real estate agents. What matters in Silicon Valley is how much effect you have on the world. The reason people there care about Larry and Sergey is not their wealth but the fact that they control Google, which affects practically everyone.
Back to Munich. I am amazed by how stylish everything and every one seems to be. I think the city’s slogan should be ‘Made you look’ because as I keep staring at all the impressively dressed people in the street (okay fine, women), I keep expecting them to look back over their shoulders, Audrey Hepburn style, and go ‘Ha, made you look.’ First I believed that the city simply has an above average amount of good looking people (which might be true), but what’s more, is that I catch myself staring at women of average beauty whom I’d normally not give the time of day (if I’m using the expression correctly) but see even they (and pretty much everyone, really) has Style with a capital S. And so even the aforementioned average girls get my attention with their cut-out-of-a-magazine outfit and I seriously wouldn’t be surprised if they’d catch me in the act and say ‘Ha, made you look’. Which generally is my theory on why it is important for otherwise average looking women to dress well. It’s a biological trick of making us (potential suitors) stop to look for a second and reconsider our original dismissal. Catch our attention, so to speak. And let me tell you, Munich has gotten all of mine.