Saturday 18th March, 2023

Buzzed: Homes for Lambeth’s last hoorah: begging for £9 million of public money before facing the chop

“Despite the company about to be broken up, it is asking for an extra £9 million of public funds. The company has taken almost a decade to come up with this plan, raising questions about why it has appeared only now”

I was still feeling pretty shitty about Forest the night before. Then I read PT behind The Athletic paywall:

“Cooper understands players, he understands what this club means to supporters and he understands the nuances of a city that had been starved of top-flight football for too long. From his habit of wearing Paul Smith clothes to his desire to ensure that the Miracle Men who won back-to-back European Cups are regular visitors to the stadium and training ground, Cooper has always somehow had his finger on the heartbeat of Nottingham and Nottingham Forest.”

I think we’re in safe hands.

To Vauxhall! Another Saturday, another early morning swim booking.

The fitness swimmers of Vauxhall don’t half like their sets. I’ve not noticed this in such great detail at other pools.

You’ll see a speedster put the lengths in, and then… stop. They’ll pause for a minute before restarting the Garmin and going again.

It’s a right bloody pain tbh. I also classify it as a form of aquatic cheating. When I put the lengths in, I PUT THE LENGHTS IN. No breathers here, ta very much.

I clocked up forty lengths in a time of 19’23” – 1’56” per 100m.

Rant over, swim over. I had time for a spa session. It was surprisingly quiet.

I walked back to SW8 via a Lidl run. There was the strong stench of weed along the mean streets of Sunny Stockwell at 10am. Some fella looked a little tired and emotional as I passed through Albert Square with his pants down.

This ISN’T a lame Eastenders script.

I caught a little of Robert Elms back at base. He’s had a personal loss this week. The four-fer reflected this with a theme of friendships. The caller who suggested Amy’s Stewarts’ Friends was spot on.

Plans to watch Peckham Town with D were cancelled when the game was called off because of a waterlogged pitch. We go again tomorrow at Dulwich.

And so instead I planned an afternoon of errands and charity shop trawling.

To Clapham Common Bandstand! To see Dr Bike!

My Raleigh 20 has been playing up with the Sturmey Archer gears of late. It keeps on slipping in second. I haven’t got the balls or knowledge to open up the hub and see what’s going off.

Neither had Dr Bike. He was very helpful and made a few adjustments to to the gear cable tension. This appeared to do the job.

A couple of community Bobbies didn’t miss a trick. They were on hand to sign cyclists up for the National Bicycle Database. I let them sticker over the Raleigh 20, despite my pleas that it’s only worth about £75.

To Clapham Junction! Or more to the point, To Nappy Valley!

Oh dear.

The daffs were out in full force around the Northern side of the Common. I reached the foot of Battersea Rise.

Which way to turn?

Right for normality and the Junction, or left for the Northcote Road enclave? I made the mistake of turning left.

The pavement cafes were full of brunching Bright Young Things; the charity shops were shit. Like I I said earlier this week: the fucking middle classes ruin everything.

There was a Cocteau’s Twin 12″ vinyl priced at £12. No ta. I had an over-sized pair of Primarni jeans to donate. I don’t think the charity shops of Nappy Valley would even accept these.

I headed up the Junction, which is where the real charity shop action was to be had.

One of the charity shops was playing Guns ‘n’ Roses Cold November Rain. This wasn’t some crappy local radio output either. Crappy local radio would never play a song that is nine minutes long.

TUNE alert!

I’ve not heard Cold November Rain in years, but I’ve always loved it. This is odd because I despise anything metal or rock related.

Coincidence led to me thumbing a G ‘n’ R CD in the racks in the same shop: Appetite for Destruction, yours for £1. I confess to pondering. But would I ever play this shit? Most certainly not.

A few flicks later and it became clear that someone had dumped their entire metal CD collection in the shop. There was a couple of Led Zep CD’s for the bargain price of £2. The muso within said that I should have bought these as part of my ‘classic heritage collection.

But Led Zep are shit, right?

I waited until the end of Cold November Rain and then walked out with an ear worm for free.

Elsewhere and I got lucky with some Julia Fordham, Space, SFA, Green Day and Chumbawamba – £4.50 all in. Plus a Rapha cycling top that was hopelessly underpriced at a fiver.


To Balham! …whilst I was in the area. This falls off my Transpontine radar. It’s never really been a part of MY S Ldn. My experiences today didn’t warm me to the area.

I cycled back down to Sunny Stockwell. The Flute Man of SW8 had a weekend variation with some opera rather than his whistle. The flowers were out in the S Lambeth Rd front garden. I had a smile on my face.

I dived into some old school blogging reading early evening. Yes, they’re still around, still an outpost of the modern interweb which is all the more better for this.

DG’s Linkblog is a half decent starting point.

Of course this all belongs to a different age. We all had so much enthusiasm for what could be achieved by dumping your thoughts online each day and dodging the corporate stronghold of The Man.

How did that work out?

Who gives a shit. Still here, still dumping my thoughts, although not exactly with the 25 years of continuous service as provided by Kottke.

I think the Golden Age of blogging could still be yet to come. We’re never going to penetrate the BIG social closed networks. That’s the point. My site, my ownership, my rules.

Distribution remains an issue. I can reach more people with a tweet from my personal account than I can from a blog post that has taken ten times longer to write.

I read a fair amount of content on Substack – DRT, Documentally and The New Cue being regular faves. But I only sign up to the freebie versions, which I know is poor form.


My problem with Substack is that once you have taken out three or more subscriptions, then you’re paying roughly the same amount you’d be paying for an online legacy media subscription (that has FAR more content) or even an offline old school magazine.

Substack was suppose to be the future in focussing on your niche interests. It’s more like a BIG MEDIA money maker now.

And yep – obb remains free. No fucker would pay for it anyway.

I do miss blog meet ups btw. That’s something of an open call.

Camera shopping happened by mistake early evening. I’m not in the market for a new model, but then again I am. I want to get back into street photography once again. I am the Martin Parr wannabe of SW8.

The trusted (VERY trusted) f717 isn’t exactly a camera that you can camouflage out in the street. It’s a great work mule, but also a great attention seeker. I’ve got a few ideas for some replacement models. Let’s see.

Some Milano-Sanremo catch up concluded Saturday.