A day in journeys
Yesterday I cycled from Stroud Green to King’s Cross, did some work, then cycled back to Stroud Green. The latter journey involved being rained on quite a bit. I forgot that cycling involves being rained on sometimes. My trousers aren’t really fit for purpose.
Later as the skies darkened I cycled to Hackney to play Communist football. I’d never cycled to Hackney before, but knew the way to Stokie Newington then divined it from there. It only took twenty minutes, despite my getting a bit lost on the way. I went through Clapton, where the 38 ends. I expected it to be a graveyard of bendy buses, all quietly rusting in the moonlight. It wasn’t.
When I arrived at the sports hall a man reading a book told me the match had been cancelled due to a leaky roof. Our team were drinking stout in the Irish pub next door, which is a bit like playing football. A bit.
I stayed for one then cycled in the direction of Holborn, because MJ Hibbett was doing his Totally Acoustic night at the Lamb on Lamb Conduit Street. Again I got a bit lost but discovered the backstreets of Hoxton contain many trendy pubs populated by young men in old men’s hats.
As I approached the West End I felt a HANKERING FOR CHIPS, so I went to the ace Fryer’s Delight on Theobald’s Road.. I shared my booth with a couple of Welshmen, who commented on how well Arsenal were playing. I explained:
“I don’t know anything about Premier League Football, because I’m a Forest fan”
“Ah, no, you wouldn’t then”.
When I got to the pub Hibbett’s set was over, but Winston Echo was on, and he was funny and endearing and honest and bearded*.
Post Winston, I talked to aforementioned popstar’s other half about how she hates Wimpy and navigates the London underground by compass.
Later, Pete Green did a set of songs which all seemed to have been written in autumn. He did a song on ukulele, which made me extremely jealous but also determined to be brave and perform at an open mic night sometime soon. Downstairs after the show, Hibbett gave me some great performing tips** which, thinking about it in the cold strip light of day, were actually pretty terrible. Also I owe him a pint.
After a few beers and a chat with the best Canadian, I cycled back to Stroud Green, ate some crisps, and went to bed.
*The show was recorded for a podcast which is now up on the Totally Acoustic site, so you can have a listen and see if you agree. Not with the bearded part, I mean. It’s impossible to tell if people have beards from the way they sound, with the obvious exception of Brian Blessed
**Half-remembered example: “Don’t imagine everyone is naked. Just imagine that everyone in the audience is a cunt”