Posts tagged london

Back in the Saddle Again | Cycling in London!

Like I am with bikes, I dove right back in the deep end. I’ve been a fairly good patient these past 9 weeks, following doctor’s orders, babying that pelvic fracture to the point where I’m overusing the cane. But today I couldn’t take another minute of it. London had dried out, and I had to get from the Waterloo tube station to the Tate modern- a considerable distance for someone who’s supposed to be “taking it easy”.

There they were, proudly waiting right outside the station, whispering “take me! I’m yours! I’ll get you there swiftly, safely, and with far more pleasure than any other mode. take me, I’m free!” So I did. Got on a bicycle for the first time since April 6th. Wearing the same pants I wore that night too. In London, a city I was so terrified to ride my motorcycle in I’d only ride on weekends and usually at night or in the burbs. I’ve ridden in lots of cities, American and European, but the whole left side traffic thing makes it a little too exciting. Especially on a bicycle. One which I can’t be bothered to figure out how to change gears. And without a helmet. I felt safe enough cruising around Barcelona without a helmet, but there’s a lot less traffic there than London and it’s all on the right side. Perhaps it’s also that I drive/ride more like a Spaniard or an Italian than a Brit. It felt so wrong to be riding without a helmet and with only my purse for hi-viz, but London was good to me, and I also rode slowly on the sidewalks when traffic was too scary. Looking forward to getting the official go-ahead! from the Doc June 20th…

Now I’m near Silverstone, looking forward to volunteering with Riders for Health this weekend. More about that later…

CSM idea of bike gear


CSM idea of bike gear, originally uploaded by pinkyracer.

Central St. Martins, ostensibly the greatest fashion school in the world, apparently does not teach user-centered design. When asked to design “The Ultimate Motorcycle Gear” the students came up with the most ridiculously un-motorcycle nonsense imaginable.

I don’t care how talented you think you are, if you can’t listen to your customers, you’ll starve in the street. Which I guess is what’s happening to all the CSM grads who don’t become famous.

Oh, and that is indeed the inimitable Tyson Beckford disrobing in the video. 🙂

Iggysurance


Iggysurance scene.JPG, originally uploaded by pinkyracer.

I understand, times are tough. Even rock stars are having to mind their money. But Iggy Pop? Selling insurance? That’s just not right.

London!

ok, so it’s 2am and I’m exhausted, but I feel guilty because I’ve been neglecting my blog.

Tate modern- OMFG. I want to meet the curator and build him/her a shrine. I have not walked that slowly through a museum ever. So much modern art with meaning. Paintings with descriptions that told a story, not just this "untitled" or "square #6" bullshit. I was even disappointed by the Rothko exhibit after seeing the rest of the collection, because so what if you do interesting things with color and shapes. I want art with a story, dammit.

This one almost made me cry when I read the description: http://www.hauserwirth.com/artists/7/ellen-gallagher/images-clips/10/ It has to do with the Middle Passage, and how some slaves who worked on ships eventually became captains/pirates.

The detail of her work was completely mind blowing. She layers paper and then linocuts it at an angle, puts some pieces together like those ornate inlay cabinets they used to make back in the day. Insanely labor intensive and so much more craftsmanship than some OCD thing of drawing a million straight lines on a wall in Beacon, NY, the home of a lot of OCD art. I also discovered another new favorite artist, Richard Beuys. He’s not new, but I guess I’d never seen his work before. Had a lovely dinner in their restaurant overlooking the Thames, and learned that "poached" means "soaked in booze" Who knew?

Other than that, I went to Camden market which is still punk mecca, as it will probably be forever, but some of the markets have been torn down and are being replaced by buildings. So it was ridiculously crowded. Found a store selling Goth Lolita clothes, with actual Japanese shop girls, so I knew it was the real deal. That was exciting, and I found a gorgeous top.

It’s bitterly cold here, weather man says 36 but feels like 27, and I must agree. Even without the wind it feels that cold. yuck. Wandered around Soho and such amazed at the fortitude of British women. There I am in 6 layers of clothing, covered head to toe, and these girls are in little dresses and strappy heels. Amazing.

This city is so breathtakingly awesome. So alive, thriving, more diverse than any city on earth, more to do, more exciting, more cool, more trendy, more fun-loving, more of everything. No wonder Barcelona disappoints me. No wonder I hated Paris the first few months I lived there. When you’ve lived in London, everywhere else is boring. I need to find me a job here. Although I’d be just as happy living in LA again, but it’s a totally different lifestyle there. And of course NYC is fab too, but their winters are even worse.

Here’s LaQueasha:

OK, must rest up for tomorrow, when I venture 7 miles outside of town to see what I came here for: 2009 model motorcycles and all the other fabulousness that is the bike show!