bored of excitement – the griefjunkie blog 

Archive for February, 2009

Greenwich, Camden, and skiving in the East Yard

Monday, February 23rd, 2009

Dear Rachel

Traditionally, south London is where north Londoners send ugly or diseased people, or those who have mental illnesses like childbrain, or the one where you are an adult, but still have baby limbs. It’s the condom in the cornflakes of the greatest city on earth. Happily, I have recently discovered that there is more to south London than rubbish public transport and floral tributes to adolescent stab victims written in text speak. This is in the form of Greenwich Market, where I have been trading for the last couple of weeks. Today, I made friends with an Airedale terrier called Clancy and traded next to a couple of ladies called Wendy and Shandy, who, despite having names like a backing singer duo, actually sell scarves.

[Getting on Read More will reveal East Yard babywear memories, among other things]

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Cold Weather And The Innuendo Postman

Wednesday, February 18th, 2009

Dear Rachel,

I pull out all the cold weather-avoiding tricks in winter, including the useful wearing carrier bags inside your shoes, which is an old market traders’ trick, as is standing on cardboard, or sitting on newspaper, all of which are far more effective than they sound. Clothes-wise, I wear two t shirts, two jumpers, a hoodie, a scarf, thermal leggings – which leave nothing to the imagination – fleecy hat and thick gloves. The only downside is that if you’re travelling home by tube, you’ll have fainted from heat exhaustion by the time you get to Tufnell Park.

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Mistaken, once again, for a bear on the northern line

Thursday, February 12th, 2009

Dear Rachel,

I was on the tube last Thursday, clattering along under the Pentonville Road and heading into the City, when I became the centre of attention for a very small and highly animated child. ‘It’s OK’, said her mother, struggling to contain the squirming infant, ‘She thinks you’re a bear’.

Amazingly, this is the second time in three months that I have been mistaken for a bear by delighted children, and is the reason that I have decided to shave my beard off. With the benefit of hindsight, this wasn’t an inspired move immediately prior to standing around outside as gales and blizzards howl around Camden Lock, but it was either that or reach the inevitable point where toddlers would be offering me jars of honey and drawings of Eeyore as I battle through Moorgate with the weekend’s stock

[Clicking Read More now will reveal inept beard related comedy jibes by East Yard observational wizard, Pikey Dave]

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Daytime Drinking And Flint Teeth

Monday, February 9th, 2009

Dear Rachel

I am sitting on a sofa at three in the afternoon, drinking a can of lager. I have never done this before, and it makes me feel glamourous, like a wino. Still, you can’t really afford not to drink the afternoon away when you can get eight cans of Carlsberg for a fiver on Junction Road. I genuinely am only drinking this as there is no Coke in the flat and lager is cheaper, healthier and makes everything you do totally brilliant. Fortunately, I have to nip down the East End and talk to some people in a bit before stopping off at Camden on the way home to talk to some other people, thus avoiding what may have very easily turned into an impromtu all day solo drinking session. I can think of few things more depressing than sitting in a silent flat under a filthy January sky, drinking can after can of competitively priced lager – price wise it’s competing with milk and food for fucks’ sake – and passing time online until ten o’clock finally comes round and the weeping starts. Bloody hell. I bet that sort of thing happens to people all the time.

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Mad Eleanor Davies, cold Yards, and why totally different places are unalike.

Friday, February 6th, 2009

Dear Rachel.

 

Yeah I was on a train today reading the fantastic Catherine Arnold’s history of – yes, that’s right – the mentally ill in medieval and late-medieval London, and there was a bit about my favourite mentalist, Eleanor Davies, who was totally spasmodic. Davies claimed that, because she could anagramatically extract the words ‘Reveal, O Daniel!’ from her name, she was therefore blessed with prophetic powers. Armed with this excellent reasoning, she would accost people around what is now Liverpool Street Station and tell their fortunes, which were always rubbish, for money. She became something of an annoying celebrity, until in 1633, she was eventually arrested. In court, it was pointed out that an anagram of her full title – Dame Eleanor Davies – was ‘Never so mad a ladiee’, at which point she was locked up in Bedlam for eight years. Job done.

 

[Hitting 'Read More' mow will reveal tricks to combat the cold when trading outdoors, and - at last - why Englsnd is colder than Australia]

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