Had a bit of a shock on my commute this morning. Armed with coffee in hand, I boarded the tube, and had just got my face comfortably entrenched in someone’s armpit (because the carriage was crowded. not due to any particular fetish for armpits) when it happened:
I was minding my own business, passing the time by reading from the ‘page’ of the kindle beside me. The owner was a rather round, short middle aged woman. With rather serious shoes and bland attire. The sort of person you might imagine becoming distraught at the thought of the neighbors having nicer carpets than they do (not that you should judge people as stereotypes, but I”m trying to paint a picture here).
Anyway, what could she be reading? The first paragraph is saw read:
‘Let’s have sex before we go’ he said. He might have been Silent once, but that was long gone. Now he was only keeping control of himself by the skin of his teeth. His hand reached around her and began to rub the warmth between her…’
Whoa! Ok, wasn’t expecting Before I could stop myself, I found myself pondering the possible reality that London’s tube system is crammed full of the sexually-frustrated middle-aged, flocking to the rush hour crush for an excuse to press themselves against all those bodies…
Ew! Back on the bike tomorrow I think!
So three months have passed since my first tentative steps in to the Big Smoke, what have I learnt?
- Brixton is awesome. The Ritzy, with its gigs, quizzes and excellent selection of films is now my favourite cinema. At Hooternanny, I can only guess they thrust a bunch of genres in to a bag, shook well and deposited the results in random clumps amongst their gig list. With gypsy punk, big-band dubstep and afro-psych organ (no, I have no idea either) all catered for… for FREE! Always interesting on a Friday or Saturday night.
- … and it’s not that dodgy. As long as your in a group… and you don’t wander off down any dark streets… and if you stay at home when people are rioting…
- Don’t get the tube to work. ‘The daily grind’ has never seemed a more appropriate phrase. Even if you get a seat, the collective looks of misery from your fellow passengers are enough to put a downer on anyone’s morning.
- … for some reason overground train commuters seem to have more positive demeanours. Perhaps its the extra vitamin d.
- Rockaoke (karaoke with a live band) is the vastly superior way to massacre everyone’s favourite rock songs in front of your friends after too many beers.
- When in a Soho bar, only getting a few coppers back from £20 even when the round only consisted of three drinks is not unusual. Though the bar-staff will usually have the decency to look embarrassed at your thunderstruck face.
- My new housemate is not to be trusted when he suggests we go for ‘a quiet Friday pint’ (are those shots of absinthe?)
As a fully fledged consumer member of a ‘First-World’ country with a steady income I’m used to being able to get what I want and getting it now (or at least on Next Working-Day Delivery). Within reason that is, I’ve been foiled in my attempts to locate a spot within a few miles of my house that escapes the eternal hum of petrol guzzlers and still consider the price of the PlayStation 3 console to be a crime against humanity.
That’s right, life is tough. But a monthly night out at the theatre and the posher boxes of muesli are all within my reach (by ‘eck I’m becoming dreadfully middle class, I can’t stop listening to Radio 4 either). To be honest I don’t have a great deal of complaints. However…
A friend of mine is giving up alcohol for lent. Which has left me thinking about all the little luxuries I take for granted. How is a luxury still a luxury if it is available all the time? This is most obvious with food, supermarkets have long done away with the idea of seasonal availability. Strawberries, once a late summer treat can be picked up any Saturday of the year. Ginger, pepper, sweet potatoes, rice… all goods flown in from far across the globe in case we’re feeling peckish.
A little abstinence can only be a good thing. As well as hopefully allowing me to appreciate things a little more, it may even make life a little more interesting! So on the 13th of every month I am going to pick something to give up for an entire lunar cycle.
March: cook meals using only food that is traditionally grown in Britain.
Anyone else giving something up (for lent or otherwise)?
Come gather round people, wherever you roam…
Today I finally set in motion something I’ve been talking about since I left Uni (a worrying three and a half years ago now!). I handed in my notice at work, because in three months time I’m moving to London.
And admit that the waters around you have grown…
It’s taken that long for me to run out of excuses. If it wasn’t because I didn’t have a job (makes much more sense to go sponge of the parents for a bit), it was because I did (looks terrible on your CV if you only hold a job for six months before heading for the horizon right?). Then of course there’s the massive student overdraft to pay back (should sort that out while you have a reliable income!) *sigh* yeah I know I suck (haven’t even paid off the damn overdraft).
And accept it that soon you’ll be drenched to the bone…
Never stopped me moaning about wanting to move though. Don’t get me wrong, Southampton has been good to me and will always be home but… I NEED TO GET OUT OF HERE! Seriously, I can’t think of anything more depressing than reaching forty and living through the same old routine. There are only so many times a guy can walk in to the same pubs, cafés and peer through the meagre cultural pickings before his brain decides to lobotomise itself in self-defence!
If your time to you is worth saving, then you’d better start swimming or you’ll sink like a stone…
So off I go. A few weeks back I was visiting some friends up in London (quite probably half way through my obligatory ‘I should move to Bristol/Brighton/London’ rant) and they said ‘well do it then! Move here!’ and… I couldn’t think of a reason not to! Many thanks to the both of you for all the verbal prodding (and especially to Rach for not only translating my CV in to Professional-ese but also letting me know what I am letting myself in for)
For the times they are a changin’
So now there’s no going back. I have no job and no place to live in three months time. I’m moving to the biggest city in Europe and you know what? I can’t wait! And I couldn’t be more terrified! The times they are a changin’…