Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Yesterday in London

1. When I got on the train, I sat by two East African Muslim women wearing burgandy-ish jilbabs that clashed with the hennaed orange tips of their fingers. One of them had a nubbin on her thumb that kind of looked like a tiny little extra thumb. It freaked me out a little bit.
2. A woman sitting across from me had the shiniest, whitest Chiclet teeth ever. And though she appeared to be in her twenties, I think they were actually ill-fitting plates because she couldn't seem to get her lips over them to stop the creepy smile.
3. At King's Cross, there was a family that took gender-specific coloration very seriously. The Mom and her two daughters were dressed entirely in pink and had pink roller luggage, the dad and the son were in blue with matching blue duffel bags. They were standing next to a kid dressed in beige. I've read Middlesex. It made me wonder.
4. I saw a short bald man on the tube with a massive bloody bandage on the back of his head. He was acting like it was any other day, like he hadn't a care in the world, nothing amiss. After standing next to him on a crowded train, I beg to differ.
5. I had many meetings, and then went to sit at a cafe off of Oxford Street to wait for my friend Yvonne. I enjoyed a very civilised glass of ice tea in the warm sunshine of a London afternoon. It was about 530pm and so I got quite the fashion parade while I waited. I observed the following:


  • Bubble skirts, short short dresses and belts are really in right now, often paired with leggings or footless tights. Sadly, though one in three women passing was sporting this look, one in 20 of them should have been.
  • Belts are also big literally.
  • 90% of the people walking past me were slaves to current fashion trends, but they were either not coming from work or they don't really understand what constitutes appropriate office attire.
  • Many women wear ill-fitting or impractical shoes that make it impossible for them to walk.
  • Tom would have hated all the flip flops.
  • Bangs (or "fringe", as they call them called here) are on the cutting edge of hair

6. Lots of people must have unprotected sex on New Year's Eve.
7. I killed some time reading the London Paper. They were interviewing P Diddy, and they asked him if he loves the Beckhams. He told them that he loves hanging out with David now that he's in LA, that Beckham is a great guy and even gave his son a football lesson. So then they asked if he and Victoria talk about their clothing lines a lot. He said that he has a lot of respect for how driven she is. If I were a gossip columnist, I'd take this to mean that Sean John no likey V. Beckham.
8. A woman asked me if I could spare a minute for charity. I laughed, and told her I'd given them about 18 hours a day for the last month so no, I couldn't really. I think she was puzzled.
9. On the way back to Euston, I was behind a monk in a plain brown hooded robe with a rope belt. He had on teva sandals. I wanted to ask him many questions. What kind of monk was he? Can he talk or is in a vow of silence? And if he's in a vow of silence, does it count when he's out in the world, not the abbey? Is his monk name different than his birth name? And if it is, how did he decide what he would be called? Are their monks named Colton or Brandon? Did he HAVE to wear sandals, or was that just the choice he made this morning? Does he make ale? Who's his favourite saint? What does a monk do for fun on a sunny day in London? How many monks does it take to screw in a lightbulb? So many questions. They were just flying into my brain, I tell you. Ever the polite one, I kept them all inside it. But it killed me.
10. In the UK, they spell "percent" "per cent". It drives me crazy.

7 comments:

Ben-Bob said...

Perhaps it's the small town Midwestern prude in me, but I've always been a bit taken aback by what constitutes "appropriate office attire" in London.

lulu said...

The train in Thailand has a special "please-give-this-seat-to-the-monks" seat, complete with a little picture of a monk.

Bubs said...

All this in one day? Wow.

Melinda June said...

No, Ben. It's just common sense.

OH! Lu! I forgot about that! No such luck for this Brother. He was standing in the aisle looking at Headwound Harry like the rest of us.

And yes, bubs. ONE DAY. I lead a full life.

Madame Leiderhosen said...

Beautiful. Next time I double-dare you to start "Excuse me, Brother, but..." and then just let those questions rip. Full disclosure on the blog will win an award of a case of Crystal Light.

Gosh, It sounds like a wonderful day.

Coaster Punchman said...

Flip flops suck.

michaelg said...

Did her thumb nubby have teeth? I'm guessing it was a parasitic twin.