May 31, 2003
Leave to Remain

It’s a strange term. Strange because it could mean many different things.

Leave it alone so that it remains.
Go and leave. On the other hand - remain.

But whichever way you look at it - those words mean so much to some people. They are the three words that stand for freedom. Terminology used by the Home Office on visa applications for permission to stay in the UK for limited or indefinite periods of time.

Leave to Remain

Leave to Remain Art Exhibition 16-22 June 2003

From Leave to Remain:

“Margareta Kern, has had the title in her mind ever since her displacement from Bosnia triggered the endless process of asylum and visa applications for her. She felt that the term ‘leave to remain’ describes well the experience of suspension where one might be asked to leave or to remain in the UK. An almost twisted sense of poetry in those words struck her, and was one of many reasons that led her to start organising the ‘Leave to Remain’ exhibition.”

I am amazed by both Margareta and Marcus - they work tirelessly for the things they believe in. Passionately. She, an artist. He an engineer.

Marcus will walk all the way from the port of Dover to the Home Office in Croydon - to mark the beginning of Refugee Week and the opening of the Leave to Remain art exhibition.

Have already made a pledge - and I plan to track Marcus’ challenge at his log. I think I might even try to venture out to Croydon on Sunday 15th June to welcome him at the finish if I can.

The shoes on my feet - I’ve bought it
The clothes I’m wearing - I’ve bought it
The rock I’m rocking - I’ve bought it
‘Cause I depend on me …

From Independent Woman by Destiny’s Child

Posted by jag at 01:02 PM | Comments (7)
May 30, 2003
Exit Stephen

We’ll all miss Stephen.

Top man. Ultra genuine sort of guy. But, like all brilliant accountants, he’s optimised his fiscal position by moving on.

It was a barmy early evening in the garden of the Queen Head’s in Brook Green off the Shepherds Bush Road. At the point I joined them at the table with Becks in hand the conversation started with comments about my Nokia, then emergency calls from estate agents, babies with chicken pox, and office politics. We progressed, somewhat bizarrely, on to the Charlatans, to the gayness of George Michael, a debate about what was David Bowie’s last album - and someone shared a memory of a Peter Gabriel Genesis gig at polytechnic - where the band was booed off the stage before completing their first song due to the audience mostly being made up of motorbiking type rockers who only came to see the heavy metal support band. We also touched upon the topic of the last scene from the film Casablanca - and exactly what Humphrey Bogart says to Ingrid Bergman in the dying moments. Of course, I demonstrated my own intellectual prowess with the latter.

I finished up my Becks - got up. Shook his hand and said goodbye. Told him all the usual: keep in touch - you know my email address etc. etc. And then I left. I strolled all the way back to the tube station with images of Stephen on my mind. There is something depressing about the journey home after showing at someone’s leaving drinks. It’s as if a milestone is laid on one’s journey through life. The point at which a character in the play exits the stage - and the story.

He was a sound bloke.

I know we’ll all miss Stephen.

It’s not right
But it’s okay
I’m gonna make it anyway
Close the door behind you
Leave your key

By Whitney Houston

Posted by jag at 11:22 PM | Comments (2)
Give me Cornetto - Give it to me

I Love Cornetto


At work - sitting at my desk listening in to a boring conference call. Beautiful day outside my window. Watching the remarkable lack of traffic out there - down on the Broadway. Passers-by in t-shirts, shorts and summery dresses. Some carrying ice-creams.

So I put the phone on mute, carefully put the handset on my desk and popped out to WHSmith and bought myself a Cornetto. Strawberry Cornetto.

Got back to my desk, picked up the phone and took it off mute. And nobody noticed that I had gone.

I love you Cornetto:

Too doot doot dooooo — yeahhhh, —— too doot doot dooooo- - ohhhh
As around the sun the earth knows she’s revolving
And the rosebuds know to bloom in early May
Just as hate knows love’s a cure
You can rest your mind assured
That I’ll be lovin’ you always

George Michael & Mary J Blige

Posted by jag at 02:17 PM | Comments (4)
May 28, 2003
Precious Cupro-Nickel

A statistical epilogue to my last entry.

My theory is that there is at least one discarded 5p coin for every hundred square metres of pavement, gutter, train station platform, shopping centre in the country. So - I wonder how much is out there?

The Office of National Statistics says that there are 23.5 million hectares of land in Great Britian - of which around 1.8 million hectares are developed urban land.

Now assuming that 1% of developed urban land is public human thoroughfare - e.g. street-side pavements, bus stops, train stations, platforms, concourses, shopping precincts etc. then there are approximately 180,000 hectares of land where 5p coins could be accidentally dropped or deliberately discarded.

Given that one hectare = 10,000 square metres - If my theory is correct - there are 1.8 million “units” of 100 sq metres in the country. Which means that there are 1.8 million 5p coins lying around up and down the length and breadth of our beloved nation. (A quick sanity-check against the Royal Mint statistics for cupro-nickel coin circulation shows that there are around 4.7 billion 5p coins in circulation - so 1.8 million is around 4 tenths of a percent of the total 5ps in circulation - so it is not far-fetched or inconcievable that one in every 2500 5p coins is accidentally dropped or deliberately thrown away.)

That’s around £90,000 - just lying around waiting to be picked up.
That would pay for my bus journey home for the next 612 years.

Money, it’s a gas
Grab that cash with both hands and make a stash

Pink Floyd - Dark Side of the Moon

Posted by jag at 11:47 AM | Comments (5)
May 27, 2003
Doughnut Money

I’ve been experimenting life without a Travelcard for the last 12 months. Tickets purchased as and when I need them. At first it was an admirable attempt to work out whether an annual Travelcard actually would cost me less - but I stopped counting after the first few days - and I’ve been buying tickets e v e r y day - ever since.

Bus, Tube, Tube, Bus. I don’t know how I put up will all that scrabbling around for bus change in my hallway, or missing the bus due to having to shop for something useless like chewing gum to get change. (You should see how many unopened packets of Wrigley’s Extra I have in my pockets - now you know why it’s the number 1 selling sweet brand in the UK.) Queueing up behind millions of slow tourists at the ticket machines in Ham. The infuriating “No Change Given” signs - or the Underground staff who sit behind those glass screens and make it their business to guarantee that you’re going to miss the next train.

Tonight I thought what the hell - I had enough coinage to buy a tube ticket - but not quite enough change to buy a bus ticket at the other end. I was 8p short. I really couldn’t be bothered to queue up at the shops around the tube station - and the shops at the other end at this time of the day are usually shuttered up and deserted - so no chance of an extra Extra to add to my pile in return for some bus change. Not without a long walk away from the bus stop anyway. So - I set myself a challenge: “Jag - you have around 20 minutes to find yourself 8p to make up your bus fare home - without breaking into that crispy tenner”.

Aha - coins at the bottom of my rucksack - there’s bound to be some in there. Spent the entire 20 minute tube ride to Alperton fumbling around with the contents of my rucksack in order to locate those coins in the dark, lonely corners of my bag. Gotcha! But - only a 2p and a 1p. I was feeling motivated. Now I needed 5p. Preferably a 5p coin.

Gave up on the bag. Got to the bus stop - and started staring at the floor. The pavement. Walking up and down the street - eyes scanning every square centimetre of pavement - knowing that I just had to spot the cheeky glint of a dropped 5p coin somewhere. I had done it before - around a year ago - me and my little boy: down our local high street one Saturday morning. Only had enough money to buy one doughnut. 5p more would have bought us 2. So we walked up and down the high street searching for 5p - and within 10 minutes we found one! I will never forget the sheer and utter excitement at this. We didn’t stop talking about it for days. We developed a theory: it takes less than 10 minutes to find an unwanted 5p coin on the street - wherever you go.

I had less than 10 minutes - bus was going to be here any minute now - and I was getting frantic. Began to get noticed by the folks standing at the bus stop. Why is this bloke doing a funny sort of walk up and down the street with his head down? They probably thought I was looking for the butts of discarded cigarettes. I felt stupid - and was resigning myself to giving up. I just wanted to get home.

I spotted my bus in the distance. That’s it - I’ve missed it now - the nearest open shop is half a mile away - and I’m never going to get change quickly enough to get that bus. The sheer disappointment was gouging further into me the closer my bus got to the stop.

And then - like an act of God that left me dumbfounded, but pounding heart - I saw it. It was almost as if a blinding ray of holy light had beamed down from the heavens to guide me to my treasure during my moment of utter need. Lying there - nestled in a shallow crevice between the bus stop pole and the kerbside was the unmistakeable glint of the coin I was after. I quickly rescued it from the grit - brushed aside the dirt and checked that it wasn’t some foriegn currency trying an eleventh-hour deception on me. Nope - it was exactly what I had hoped:


1998 vintage. The Queen sure does look great when you need her.

I proudly presented my fare - took my ticket - and treated myself to the front seat on the empty top deck.

  • It is my destiny to be riding this bus home.
  • I am the king of all I survey.
  • This is my domain - and I am invincible.


Posted by jag at 10:09 PM | Comments (1)
May 22, 2003

Driving back from Slough:

He slowed down. I slowed down. He sped up. I sped up. He slowed down again. I slowed down again. Like synchronised swimmers we moved in an elegant sequence of fits and starts that culimated in us slowing to a complete stop: him sticking his finger up at me - and me doing the same at him. He: a cabbie trying to join the elevated section of the M4. Me just an ordinary guy driving along the elevated section of the M4. Suppressed rage all the way back to Hammersmith. He with suppressed rage behind me - all the way back to the Hammersmith turn-off. When we parted company I was relieved. But I spent the next 15 minutes driving round in circles in the King’s Mall multi-storey car park: why is it so f*cking difficult finding a space when you really need one?

I don’t what it is, but it has a certain draw. Glamour with an unpretentious edge. In complete contrast to the City - which I would turn my nose up at now after spending years working there - this place fuses what should be a doomed combination of nation, province, refuge, cult, art, crime, corporation and just about everything you could think of throwing into the pot - knowing with absolute certainty that it’s going to turn out foul in such a small pot. But strangely it doesn’t. This place seems to play harmony to extreme density in lines of urban tangent. And it does this without getting stuck up its own back side - unlike Kensington or Chelsea. Flight Path, Flyover, Traffic, Schools, Kids, Theatre, Coca Cola, Disney, River, Bridge, People, Crowds.

Tube lines separated by a roadway - upon which drivers seemingly urge themselves to step up a gear to get around. There is no logic in this. They won’t get around any faster - this they know. But it is adrenaline inspired by crowds - they flirt with a ready-made audience of many nations made up of people who either work here - or simply pass through here.

If you want to find all the cops
They’re hanging out in the donut shop
They sing and dance (oh whey oh)
Spin the clubs cruise down the block

The Bangles - Walk like an Egyptian

Posted by jag at 06:12 PM | Comments (2)
May 21, 2003
Transvision Vamp

Was checking my access logs for the Raw Text section of my “Views from Broadway” website. I am always astonished by the number if hits I get for the pages on this site - especially from Google. But with the exception of a page which sets out a review of my Psion netBook from a few months ago (which gets hits from like-minded Psion-lovers from all around the world) there is one page in particular seems to get the most Google-hits - and it’s my page about Transvision Vamp: This gets hundreds of hits every week for fans of this esoteric band from the second-half of the 1980 - fans trawling desperately through endless pages of Google search results for little gems of information about this band. I am also surprised how many times the North Cirecular mpeg video that accompanies the article has also been downloaded by these curious fans! (It contains high quality audio dub of one of Transvision Vamp’s biggest hits to some junky movie of me driving around the North Circular to IKEA on a Sunday afternoon!)

Since it’s the second anniversary of the Raw Text pages - as a tribute I reproduce the popular Transvision Vamp piece as today’s blog entry - but this special edition of the article contains links to relevant places that didn’t feature in the original article. The power of the blog!

Transvision Vamp

You know this band.

They were a late eighties phenomenon. A breath of fresh air. Strangely trashy, but likable. The sort of band that becomes famous on image, stage behaviour and a couple of songs. Much more than a one-hit wonder - the sort of band that impresses upon people something new and exciting - but when the world moves on are still remembered - and definitely not forgotten. The sort of band that generates the sort of music that you can dig out of your old cassette collection, play in your car on the way to work - and actually enjoy it.

Transvision Vamp

Despite almost universal critical hatred, Transvision Vamp briefly rose to the top of the U.K. charts in the late ‘80s, thanks largely to the media image of lead singer Wendy James, who fashioned herself as a sexually provocative, rebellious, fashion-conscious punk — sort of a mixture of Madonna, Blondie’s Deborah Harry, T. Rex, and The Clash. The musical backing by guitarist/songwriter Nick Christian Sayer, keyboardist Tex Axile, bassist Dave Parsons, and drummer Pol Burton tended to reflect the latter three bands as well. The singles “Tell That Girl to Shut Up” (originally by Holly and the Italians) and the Top Five “I Want Your Love” helped their debut album, Pop Art, reach the British Top Five, while the follow-up, Velveteen, hit the top, buoyed by the Top Three hit “Baby I Don’t Care.” The group’s run halted when MCA initially refused to release Little Magnets Vs. the Bubble of Babble in the U.K.; it eventually appeared in 1991 to little attention.

I am not embarrased to say that I liked this band. I was an impressionable college kid at the time - and my flat-mates were all raving about them. Except - I’d like to think that whereas my flatmates raved on about the lead singer (admittedly a fanciable blonde called Wendy James) - I was taken by the freshness and audacity of the music and the stage performances. Looking back now - Wendy James was one of the early icons of “girl-power” at a time when musically the late-eighties were quite depressing.

I am pleased to say that I have blown the dust off my “Now That’s What I Call Music 1988” double-CD and will be recording it onto a TDK 90-minute cassette. I will then use a bic biro to pull out some of the brown magnetic tape from the cassette - give it a bit if scrunching in my hand and then wind it back up again before I toss it into my car. This will give the music an authentic “retro” feel when I next drive round the North Circular. And I will really enjoy Transvision Vamp!

In fact - now go see the video and hear the music! Go to the “audio/video” section and download the MPEG file labelled: “North Circular to IKEA”.

Posted by jag at 12:46 PM | Comments (6)
May 20, 2003
Deja Vu

Yes - I got one of those moments tonight. You know: when you JUST KNOW that you’ve been through that experience before sometime. Of course - I got it whilst I was standing at the bus stop …

This is usually a sign. A sign of The Matrix having been Reloaded.


Back to reality: well - I couldn’t help but contribute to the current hype that is The Matrix.

I have to admit that I saw the first film on DVD only just last year (2002) - after I signed up to an excellent DVD rental service called DVDsOnTap (shameless plug here - as this service is run by a friend of mine!). Many of my friends couldn’t figure out why I hadn’t seen it before. And worse still - they just couldn’t understand why I didn’t have the DVD in my “reference DVD” collection. I told them that I got Gladiator as my “reference” DVD when I got my DVD player - and although they thought this was “worthy” - they told me that it wasn’t “worthy” to NOT have The Matrix as part of the permanent collection.

To this day - I still haven’t got The Matrix as part of my permanent collection of DVDs - so instead - I decided to give it a permanent presence in my blog:

Yours: Neo

Back to life, back to reality
Back to the here and now yeah

By Soul II Soul from the excellent “Club Classics Vol 1” album

Posted by jag at 11:15 PM | Comments (0)
May 19, 2003
The Noughties?

Only got a few minutes for this particular update - so I figured I would share something that’s been bugging me on the last few bus journey’s home:

  • Many people are real proud to have been born in the “sixties”. (It’s probably these people who form the mainstay of today’s Swingers: Swinging Sixties and all that - yes? Get it?)
  • Then come the “eighties” - well not sure what of any significance you could attribute to the eighties - for those of us in the UK - probably Margaret Thatcher, UB40 and those irritating black Pierre Cardin jumpers with the vertical white stripes on them.

And this leads to what’s been bugging me: how does one refer to the decade that starts 2000 and ends 2009 ??? (or more accurately; the decade that starts 2001 and ends 2010 ???)

All I can think of “the noughties”.

(By the way - I discovered the above link to someone else who posed the same question - AFTER I wrote the above! God: Google can be a real killjoy can’t it! :-( )

Anyway - “The Noughties”

Is it just me? Or does this just not quite have the same ring to it?

Princess Diana

I’ve wasted all my tears, Wasted all those years
And nothing had the chance to be good, Nothing ever could …

By Simply Red (Holding back the years)

Posted by jag at 11:59 PM | Comments (1)
May 18, 2003
Retro British Television

The BBC1 Clock from 1981

Do you remember that?

It’s good to know that someone out there is preserving history. In this case his name is Dave Jeffery - and the Flash version of the BBC Clock that you see above was reproduced by Dave as part of a BBC commission - the results of which you can see at the BBC I Love TV page on testcards and idents. (The clock that you see above is actually being served from the BBC page.)

Furthermore - you will find a whole host of other Flash animations of TV idents by Dave, plus loads of other material pulled together by a chap called Andrew Wiseman by going to If you grew up in the 70’s and 80’s - this site will certainly bring back memories.

My favourites from this great site:

But, best of all - remember Mary, Mungo & Midge? I have only vague memories of this kids TV programme - but somebody called “Dave the Wave” it seems, has made it his life’s work to remind everyone how great a kids show it was. They just don’t make them like that any more …

As if by magic - the shopkeeper appeared.
From Mr Benn - never just an ordinary day at 52 Festive Road. (Click here for hear the theme tune.)

Posted by jag at 02:19 PM | Comments (4)
May 17, 2003
Platform Rubbish

The rubbish bins have made re-incarnation on the London Underground. Once again - you can dispose of your unwanted thoughts on the platforms instead of having to take them with you. Only this time - the rubbish is completely transparent ..

Platfrom rubbish

Rubbish now clearly visible

We cannot live together
We cannot live apart
That’s the situation
I’ve known it from the start

From “Throwing it all away” By Genesis (Invisible Touch)

Posted by jag at 11:54 PM | Comments (1)
May 16, 2003

Found something slightly strange on the shared printer at work today. It looked like a poem. Was slightly taken aback by it - because there was no context to it: no title, no name, and presumably no owner (or so it would seem). So I left it there - in case somebody would come back for it. But intrigue got the better of me - and I stopped by the printer before I left the office for the evening - just to see if it was still there. And it was! So I stuffed it in my bag and took it home. Perfect blog material I thought to myself. I had no idea who had written it - and there was something strangely fascinating about it.

Later - I did a quick search on Google for some of the words that were on this poem - and to my surprise - there were millions of results! It turns out that said poem is an alternative “Friendship” poem - i.e. an alternative to all the cheesy sort of poems you see written inside those cheesy-looking birthday cards you get at Safeway.
Click here to read it.

So - by then I felt really stupid - because there was me wondering to myself all the way home (well not quite all the way home - see previous blog entry below) who might have written this poem and who were they writing it to - and all that deep, profound philosophical stuff - and it turned out that Google had exposed my utter niaivite! Practically everybody on the Internet has a variation of this poem on their web pages. And I suppose I have continued that honour by doing the same.

Oh well - it’s nice to be humbled once in a while.

Plastic Friends

Plastic Friends

It’s like you’re always stuck in second gear
And it hasn’t been your day, your week, your month, or even your year

From the theme tune of the “Friends” sitcom

Posted by jag at 10:39 PM | Comments (0)
Steam, Vent, Stay Cool

To the woman who got onto my 79 bus tonight: You got on at around 7:15pm at the Wembley High Road stop near the corner of Park Lane. I was sitting right at the back of the bus - on the lower deck. The bus was mostly empty. So why did you waltz on past loads of empty seats near the front - every seat shouting a loud invitation to you: “PLEASE SIT HERE!”??? Why did you instead walk right up to the back of the bus - to the bench seat that I was sitting on - and make me shift my bag from the space next to me so that you could sit down???

Now - I deliberately sit on this back seat on my journeys home so that I can sit comfortably - with one leg casually thrown across the other. It makes me typing my blog notes into my phone - or reading my newspaper so much more comfortable. But NO - you had to insist on sandwiching yourself next to me and some other innocent bloke - causing me to uncross my legs - and take my rucksack back onto my lap - making it impossible for me to read my scavenged newspaper. When I gave you a momentary black look - it wasn’t your nuasea-inducing ugly hairstyle that I was complaining about. It was the fact that you had ruined my Friday-night journey home.

And you proceeded to ruin it some more - in spectacular “look at me - aren’t I full of street-cred?” style.
Yep - not only did you proceed to take a half-eaten disgusting Burger King burger out of your plastic bag and start stuffing your stupid face with it - covering me and innocent bloke in a cloud of your stinky Burger King fumes - you then decided that you weren’t very comfortable sitting next to me. So you got up - and sat yourself back down on the bench seat opposite me - FACING ME!! And continued with your disgusting face-stuffing routine so that I could presumably enjoy seeing your twisted expression as you licked up the tomato ketchup around the edges - and picked the stupid gherkin out of the burger and tossed it out of the bus window.

I could have made a point - and got up and found somewhere else to sit - but this is MY BUS. I have NEVER seen you on this bus before - and you sure don’t have any MANNERS - so WHY should I move for you?

What really twisted my melon though was when you decided that with your disgusting Double Cheeseburger mouth full you were going to call up one of your so-called friends on your mobile and start chatting away about your sex-life at 90 decibels - thinking that you looked oh so 21st century with your half eaten dog-burger in one hand, your super-size Diet Sprite in the other - and your mobile phone stuck between your flabby treble-chin and your shoulder. You were a pathetic sight lady.

I was really hoping that the bus-driver would hit the brakes harder every time he came to a bus stop - hoping that your Diet Sprite would splash all over your nearly-already-completely-exposed-but-not-very-pleasant-to-look-at cleavage. On second thoughts - I’ll take that back. I wouldn’t want to have to watch you clean it all up in front of me.

It was simply too good to be true when you got off several stops later at Preston Road station. But it took several more stops - and a few more opened windows to get rid of your burger fumes. And it will take much longer to wipe you clean out of my mind. I hope to never encounter you again.

Eat. And then vomit. But not on my bus please.

If it happens again I’m leaving
I’ll pack my things and go

By UB40

Posted by jag at 08:45 PM | Comments (2)
May 15, 2003
Searching for "FUME"

FUME: He (assuming he is a he) is the King of the Hammersmith & City Line.


I’ve been meaning to write about FUME for a long time - but really needed some photographic and video evidence to complement the words. Well - finally I got around to researching it. I took advantage of my mid-morning journey in to work today to go a different route. Armed with my Handycam - I took the Metropolitan Line from Wembley Park down to Baker Street - and then jumped onto the Hammersmith & City Line towards Hammersmith.

And I caught it all on camera. I guess I must have looked a bit stupid standing there - pressed up against the window of the sliding doors with my camera trained on the scenery of the railway lines - but that’s why I didn’t decide to this in the rush hour; I didn’t want to embarrass myself to too many people.

When I’m standing there staring out the window at the works of art that make up our urban landscape - I often wonder who in the world I would most like to meet. My list is quite long - but there is one person I really would like to meet - and he appeals to the audacious side of me.

His name is FUME.

FUME is a tagger. He’s “bombed” the entire Hammersmith & City line from Paddington westward towards Hammersmith. He is the crown king of the “writers” of West London.

Yes - FUME is a graffiti artist. Well - I’m not sure everyone would call it art - but it fascinates me nevertheless. What drives him to do it? He must spend all night working on some of his artwork - what is his motiviation? Is it respect? Is this his way of literally leaving his mark on society? I wonder what sort of music he likes? Does he work on his own? What do other taggers think of him? Too many questions … and only guesses at the answers.

I bet the British Transport Police would also like to meet him.

FUME’s “pieces” (short for masterpiece in the trade - these are large tags which contain more than two colours), although illegal, only seem to grace otherwise boring-looking walls. Hidden from all views except trains - therefore cannot really be called “eyesores”. Well - I don’t think they are an eyesore anyway. It amazes me sometimes how they manage to do these subversively. In no way do I condone vandalism - but I’m sure the creative energies of these taggers could be used positively to brighten up the dreary suburban railway lines.

I finish here with some imagery of FUME’s work:

Maybe one day I will get a chance to meet FUME.

And now, if you have the patience - why not download my latest pop-video creation “In search of Fume”. Although it’s around 15.5 MBytes in size (yes go get yourself a cup of tea whilst in downloads!) - you will be rewarded with CD-quality musical accompaniment to the video. A true multimedia experience! Go to the Audio/Video download page by clicking here. And be sure to look out for my favourite bit -which is where the Ham & City train I’m on is between Paddington & Royal Oak; you can see me zoom on to an overhead iron-bridge which has FUME’s tag on it. How did he do that? Too many questions …

Though I try to find the answer
To all the questions they ask
Though I know it’s impossible
To go living through the past
Don’t tell no lie
There’s a natural mystic
Blowing through the air

From “Natural Mystic” by Bob Marley

Posted by jag at 06:11 PM | Comments (306)
May 14, 2003
50 Reasons to Enjoy London ???

Well - tonight I picked up a discarded Evening Standard newspaper (as you do) on the tube-part of my journey home from Hammersmith. Rather surprisingly - it was several minutes after the doors closed behind the gentleman who left the paper there - before I decided to pick it up. On a crowded train full of bored people on the way home - a newspaper about to be abandoned is usually spied upon very closely by anxious eyes looking for easy news. And an abandoned newspaper is usually jumped upon fast - like a flock of vultures homing in on a carcass. Although I have to admit that the thrill in this particular type of kill is less satisfying now than it used to be - due to the invasion of the “Metro” so-called “newspaper” on London’s transport system a few years ago. Now - you are most likely to spot unwanted Metros on your carriage - and on some occasions (particularly at places like Wembley Park) you may find an empty train pull up on the platform - which is littered with Metro carcasses - a newspaper killing field.

So - the thrill of the kill is now limited to non-Metro newspapers - like the Evening Standard, the Sun, The Mirror - or if you are a lucky vulture - a copy of the main sections of the Guardian or the The Times.

Anyway - as I flicked through the Evening Standard - I was was reminded why I never go out of my way to buy this paper. Comfort news. The only part of this paper that I find is of any quality is the editorial comment page - where the newspaper editor usually proffers an opinion - and usually there’s an interesting article by a guest author. But it was the editorial comment that caught my eye tonight: It was all about “50 reasons to enjoy London” - the Evening Standard’s way of contributing to a recently launched initiative by the Mayor of London (called Totally London) to remind London people that their city is the coolest place in the world. Now and I couldn’t help but write about this editorial comment tonight. I just had to state my opinion!
Click here to read on …

Totally London

Let me take you by the hand and lead you though the streets of London,
I’ll show you something to make you change your mind

By The Beatles I think.

Posted by jag at 10:36 PM | Comments (2)
May 11, 2003
Network Friendly Tube Maps!

Well - I have been experimenting with some technology for making it faster to download things like maps - by compressing them without losing the fidelity and usability of them. I know this a bit of a nerdy blog entry - but I think you’d be surprised at what can be achieved. Click here to find out more …

A zoomable tubemap you don't have to wait ages to download!

I’m just another western guy,
with desires that I can’t satisfy

A line that turns up a few times in an excellent album called Infected by “The The”

Posted by jag at 01:49 PM | Comments (0)
May 03, 2003
What are words worth?

Well I finally got around to relocating my blog from my Views from Broadway website to here. And this time, instead of creating my pages in Dreamweaver, I’ve loaded up the excellent Movable Type blog content management system to manage the site - and I am using the w.bloggar windows application to publish my entries using XML-RPC from my PC. Actually - blog creation, for me, usually happens on my (Route 79) bus journey home after work - drafting notes on my Nokia 9110 mobile phone - so when I get home I just upload the notes into w.bloggar and publish! And when I get new mobile phone that support JAVA MIDP2.0 - I will be able to use the Azure mobile phone client!

Now I can focus less on the web-design and more on THE WORD

Words of nuance, words of skill
And words of romance are a thrill
Words are stupid, words are fun
Words can put you on the run

From a really catchy number from the early ‘80s by Tom Tom Club

Posted by jag at 12:08 PM | Comments (2)

Powered By: Movable Type | Blog Styles | Love Productions | | SmartyPants | Linux | MT-Blacklist | MySQL | Zeus | Easyspace
© 2002, 2003, 2004 - London (UK). Most Rights Reserved. Syndicate this site (XML)