"misty evening in November,to put your feet upon that buckling concrete walk, to step over grassy seams and make your way, hands in pockets, through the silences, that was what Mr.Leonard Mead most dearly loved to do."
Mr. Mead is different than other people in his society because he likes being outdoors.
"Ever since a year ago, 2052..."
The story is set in the future in the year 2050.
All the houses in the neighborhood look the same, dark and silent. This is because everyone in this society is overusing technology.
"on his way he would see the cottages and homes with their dark windows, and it was unequal to walking through a graveyard..."
"Crime was ebbing; there was no need now for the police.."
The society is portrayed as a perfect place with no crime.
The government, or in this case, the police, is oppressive and aggressive towards Mr. Mead.
"Stand still. Stay where you are! Don't move...Your hands up! Or we'll Shoot!"
The police officer forces Mr. Mead to go to a psychiatric hospital because he is freely walking around and not watching tv.
"To the Psychiatric Center for Research on Regressive Tendencies."