A journey of a thousand miles begins with a single step. Always seek out the seed of triumph in every adversity. Kindness is the language that the deaf can hear and the blind can see.
These aphorisms do not come from the inedible innards of a fortune cookie but are instead the food for thought served up to Tube passengers at Oval station in south London.
It’s been 14 years since customer services manager Anthony Gentles was inspired to perk up the “blank faces” of commuters with a daily dose of wisdom from his favourite book, Tao Te Ching, the key text in the ancient Chinese philosophical tradition of Taoism.
The baton has since been taken on by his colleague Glen Sutherland, whose posts on the station information board have won him fans from around the world and spawned a bevvy of imitators across the capital.
Oval station’s famous message board is surrounded by plants – and classical music is always playing.