Monday, December 04, 2006

Saturday's gone

Go to the pub with James on Saturday after an efficient house-moving operation. But throughout, I feel concerned about the fact that he is wearing green trainers and a red hoodie, and I'm wearing red trainers and a green hoodie, and how this might look.

***

Hop over to the White Horse on Brixton Hill for Toby's birthday drinks. Weirdly, despite its, er, 'trendy bar vibe', a number of the clientele are quite old. I point out a guy who resembles a 70-year-old Tony Blair. "There's a guy who looks like Prescott playing pool," says Johnny.

***

Toby tells me about the sadistic evening he inflicted on himself recently. Along with Ben (who harbours the most amazing Alan Lamb anecdote ever – I'll have to tell it to you sometime) he went on a pub crawl of London station pubs. And that's not pubs that are just outside stations, or pubs called 'The Paddington'. No, they had to be the hellish drinking establishments that are actually on the concourse. "We were the only people who were actually there out of choice," he explained. "Bonaparte's in Waterloo is an amazing place."

***

As I'm swiping my Oyster card coming out of the tube station, a plastic splinter of the yellow touch pad somehow comes off and lodges itself in my right thumb, between the side of the nail and the skin. It really hurts, and there's blood. I'm totally suing someone for that.

***

So this was fun: then I went to a (okay, another) pub to meet up with some bloggers. There was Huw (My Thoughts Exactly), Monica (An American in London), Astrid (*The Amazing Adventures & Untold Stories of Astrid*), Leonie (Sometimes Funny is All I Have), Curly (Hairy Tales), and Curly's friend Sud. All good people, and blogging is barely mentioned.

***

As closing time closes in, an extraordinary thing happens. The barmaid whose been telling us to get out comes up to our table wielding a signed Barry Manilow LP. "Is this anybody's?" she says, incredulously. Later we find the culprit and ridicule her.

***

We traipse off to Thirst in Soho. At first, it's pure hell, packed and musically upsetting. But then – and I don't think I was alone in this – it starts to become, like, enjoyable. But then all the booze I've drunk starts to weigh on me and it's time to go.

***

Feeling highly wrecked, I leave the bar. Unable to face the horrors of the Saturday evening night bus, I decide to walk home. On the way down Whitehall, two girls are dancing in the street. They suddenly start running and, without any consultation at all, jump onto the podium beneath the large statue of Field Marshall the Viscount Alan Brooke and start grinding against him, each with a hand on his nether regions. It is highly disrespectful, but bloody hilarious.

***

Reaching the Houses of Parliament, I stare up at the extraordinary architecture of the Victoria Tower Sovereign's Entrance, misty-eyed with drunken wonder and think, yeah, this is why you walk home.

***

And this is why you don't: going along Millbank, six guys are coming towards me. As they pass, refusing to alter my course, I brush against the coat of one of them with my arm. Weirdly, neither of us register this at the time, but a good ten seconds later, and a fair distance apart, we both look back. "Watch where you're fucking walking, you cunt!" he yells. "Come back here!" I glare, but silently turn down his kind offer. I have quite a lot of attitude sometimes.

***

Reaching Stockwell – the walk's taken just under an hour - I'm not that hungry, but I do need something, so, like the dirty addict I am, decide to indulge and pay a visit Millennium Fried Chicken. It's almost impossible to convey the look of amazement that appears on Shiva's face when I respond to his "the usual - two pieces of chicken and chips?" question in the negative. The poor man's eyes widen in horror and confusion. But I put in an order for a chicken burger, and he's appeased.

***

Fortunately, I have a new Tamil word to try out: 'Parkalam' ['See you later']. It works: Shiva returns to his usual state of intense jolliness and throws in a free can of Coke with my chicken burger. Heady times.


Another fun Saturday
And another

Other accounts of the evening:
Curly
Leonie
Astrid

3 comments:

* (asterisk) said...

That sounds like a proper fun night.

Curly said...

It does sound like a fun night! I love walking home rather than getting the bus too, I think it's a favourite of mine as the place I grew up in didn't have a bus back home - for any of the seven miles. There was always something to do on the way back:-

Spring - I would look at all the wild flowers in the hedgerow and look for glow-worms.
Summer - I'd get home when it was light again, the pubs closed at 12am.
Autum - I'd see how many hedgehogs I could find.
Winter - I'd walk about two miles and sleep in my friends hay-barn until I could get a lift home in the morning.

Pleasure to meet you though, Will. There are photos which I'll link to sometime, or alternatively you could provide me with you e-mail. Messge my,er, myspace.

Huw said...

You did well to do no more than glare. They were probably MI5 round there. Not only would you have been beaten up, but also framed for treason. Nasty.