diamond geezer

 Sunday, April 18, 2021

The first 100 words of eight posts that weren't worth finishing...

Overlooking the A12 is a recent residential development called Lime Quarter. Its 20 storeys additionally overlook the Limehouse Cut which may explain the name, or else it's the lime-coloured glass they added to the exterior. A single thin orange panel also rises the full height of the building and when the sun's in the right place, around breakfast-time, a bright reflective stripe extends across the dual carriageway and all the cars passing through it briefly flash red like they're being scanned by a laser beam. I've only ever seen the phenomenon twice but alas I couldn't capture the moment of

One flank of Robin Hood Gardens, the Brutalist housing icon, remains semi-occupied alongside the entrance to the Blackwall Tunnel. The other flank is long gone and re-arising as a greater number of non-concrete flats. But Robin Hood Millennium Green survives inbetween, a large lawn blessed with a mosaic fish and a substantial central mound. I wandered in freely and climbed the unkempt wooden staircase to the summit, revelling in the last vestiges of how Alison and Peter Smithson intended it to look, but the wall of doomed apartments was shielded behind a burst of leaves so I could only imagine

It seemed a good day to hit the beach, if that's what the pebbles at London Wharf on the east side of the Isle of Dogs count as. The tide was far enough out for me scrunch down the humpy slipway through a line of washed-up driftwood and plastic, joining one other soul on the stony expanse. A young family, well-wrapped and probably local, had taken up position at the far end of the bank of steps facing the North Greenwich aggregates terminal. There was space for dozens more but I suspect the off-piste location and the industrial panorama deters

Thames Clippers (I refuse to use their rebranded name) are running boat services again, which is good news because it’s finally possible to walk down their unlocked piers. I walked down the pier at Masthouse Terrace, ignoring the arrows taped to the floor because nobody else was around, and bobbed briefly beside the embarkation point. I couldn't tell if a boat was due because no paper timetable had been provided and the electronic display had no data. Two different fare posters were on display so I assumed it was the more expensive one and no way am I paying £7.70

At Canary Wharf the astroturf piazza where the free crazy golf course was located last summer has been taken over by something much more profitable, namely an outdoor gym. Two large black tents have been erected, the neighbouring skyscraper conveniently shielding everyone from the bitter wind. One contains sweaty cyclists pedalling furiously, optimally spaced, while in the other a man shouts loudly to encourage the wielding of weights. The organisers call it WOD (or workout of the day), please arrive 15 minutes early to be temperature scanned, sorry no toilets, you MUST complete the Health & Safety waiver prior to

You can tell unlockdown has begun because The Breakfast Club has queues again. For the last four months patrons have been content with takeaway but eight outdoor tables make all the difference and suddenly everyone wants a Bacon Butty in close proximity to a friend. A member of staff with a mask and a man-bun deals with walk-up customers, while two slight moped-riders encased in black helmets await receipt of the next pre-booked orders. Getting past is a pain because their chalkboard has been positioned opposite the entrance where everyone's gathering, attention focused on eggs and empty stomachs rather than

There was a right palaver back in June when the statue of slave trader Robert Milligan was removed from its plinth outside the Museum of Docklands. There's been less fuss about its replacement by a Pyramid of Love, a four-faced structure depicting a quartet of imaginary women, each a goddess representing a particular compass point. One's Celtic, one's Yoruban, one's Indigenous and one's dressed as a rabbit. It’s on a year-long loan to the Tower Hamlets chapter of the Canal & River Trust, highlighting post-colonialism and shining a light on those silenced and erased through patriarchal oppression, which is obviously

A measure of collective social deprivation is that friends are willing to clamber into a circular boat and set sail on the West India Dock in temperatures below ten degrees for the sake of a bring-it-yourself picnic. yesterday morning's group were excitable, loud and double-wrapped in hoodies, and had paid £150 for the opportunity. I counted at least nine in the boat, which according to the FAQ is only permitted if the occupants are from two households which this group of giggly teens definitely weren't. Whoever described this as "the most unique outdoor experience in London" is clearly an utter

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