Walking upstairs to the toilet in the Chinese restaurant was daunting, the stark lighting was straight out of one of those trendy European torture/horror affairs, the décor a suitably shabby off-white and the broken lino that dressed the concrete steps could so easily have played recent host to sticky gobbets of gore and congealing crimson blood, it was almost a bit of a shame when the only genuine shock about the whole sorry experience was the cloying smell of piss –dreadful it was, like the inside of kidney patients catheter tube. Right put me off my tea it did.
We were in this Chinese restaurant in Soho celebrating a gloriously won pub quiz, the spoils of which had allowed us to purchase a fine selection of faces and insides. In addition to the author there was Louche, Urban Woo and Sean (all have links to the right) along with Andy and Rick. The conversations were eclectic and amusing and by now we were all at that wonderfully loose stage of the evening where we could dip in an out of each other’s flabbergastings. Indeed, it was only because it was Monday that we didn’t wind up in another bar, instead after fond farewells I found myself quite alone on a carriage.
The tube ride into town followed another sickeningly dull day at work; the south was being battered by storms -this was perhaps the single most interesting aspect to the day, especially the ride home on my black bitch, which was like being in a tumble drier, ON ACID (it wasn’t remotely)- and frankly it was a relief to get on with my book in peace. I was blown through Soho where I arrived at a jolly little hostelry on Dean Street and the evening commenced in a most congenial fashion from there on in.
I have to say, I was fairly fucking useless during the actual quiz but did come up with the team name ‘Satan is Lord’ because I simply wanted the MC to say it out loud, it amused me. See how I play with people etc., We went from 4th to joint 3rd before having a final round face off with a group behind us, who I’m pretty sure had been privy to some of our answers, and come out bathed in glory.
The tube journey back was most peculiar. After sitting in the carriage on my jack jones for three stops engrossed in my book I noticed out the corner of my eye that something wasn’t quite right. Having passed through some of the busiest stops in central London I realised that not a single sole had embarked or alighted from the train. Indeed, all the platforms were completely empty of people. From thereon in I didn’t see a single person until I reached the top of the escalator at Tooting and stepped onto the virtually empty street.
I stood up and looked through the train, from the back right the way to the front I watched the tube snake its way under the city dragging its only passenger onwards and inwards. Jacob’s Ladder sprung to mind, then the Omega Man, I toyed with being the last person alive alternating it with being taken down to Hades, my final Dante- esque journey, before being engulfed in the fiery lakes of hell, perhaps calling the quiz team ‘Satan is Lord’ hadn’t been such a good idea after all I mused dryly. It was a very peculiar state of affairs and a little unnerving initially, gradually becoming very unsettling as I progressed. I was fucking dead chuffed to get off the cunt I can tell you.
Despite my dislike of Danny Dwyer, as noted on these pages before, I saw Severance over the weekend, it’s not bad (even DD isn’t too bad in it, there I’ve said it) but the best thing about is Tim McInnerny. It called to mind today’s offing, which is about as cheery as vomiting drawing pins.