Monday, May 23, 2005

London trips of one kind or another

As I have mentioned before, I do like the odd escape from the delights of Norwich to the big smoke, where one gets to see things rare in this ‘fine city’, e.g. people reading books in public. I must look like a yokel, though, as I gawked in slack-jawed amazement at the things I’m sure hip London cats see as mundane. Take the tube, for example. I’m sure if I had to take it every day, it would drive me insane. I’m always amazed by it, tough. Perhaps it’s my science fiction—obsessed brain but it seems to be like something out of La Jetée or Fahrenheit 451: subterranean tunnels, mechanised trains, robotic voices. I was there for S's 30th birthday, an old college friend from back in the day. It was a great party, and good to see our respective capacities for various substances still hold up to the old NIDS (Northern Irish Drinking Standard)after almost ten years. I was asleep on a sofa by about 5am with a rug over my head and awoke when someone tried to sit on me at about 8 to a line only heard at the best parties:

“I think there’s still someone under here”

I then took over skinning-up duties, joints for breakfast are never advisable, but great fun. In related surreal experience news, I also caught the Robert Crumb exhibition at the Whitechapel Gallery. It was very strange to see copies of Crumb's Weirdo I have in my collection behind glass cases being ‘oohed’ and ‘aahed’ at by black-clad hip London types. There was a sketch-book instead of a guest book though and leaving my scrawl was oddly satisfying. There was also a 12 year old kid there who dragged his folks along. I saw him in the gift shop haranguing them to buy him three editions of The Complete Crumb. I was thinking ‘jeez, cut your losses kid, you’ve already got to see the Crumb exhibition don’t push your luck by demanding 40 odd quid’s worth of books containing statuesque asses. If I was 12 and had Crumb books they would safely hidden from the folks...

1 comment:

Ernesto said...

Lucky bastard! Re: the kid, I know... three years ago I was at this Star Wars shop... and there was this 8-year-old kid, with a great retro Star Wars t-shirt looking around. I was amazed by the amount of stuff for sale, and frustrated about all that I could not possibly afford. (You have to remember that Mexico before the 90's was more or less like a communist country in terms of toys and collectibles and comics and general cool stuff). The kid goes, (fart-smelling face) "let's go, dad, there is NOTHING here". I was like," hey, kiddo, you have no IDEA what it was to be your age in the 80´s, do you? Show some fuckin' respect!..."