Thursday, 19 August 2010

Spiderman and Benazir Bhutto...

It goes with out saying that you love your parents, who are, of course, completely irreplaceable and unique; that said, if you could have any two fantasy folks, who would they be? Never mind all the ‘at first sight’ stuff, the exact moment I fell very deeply in love with my girlfriend was when she told me hers were Spiderman and Benazir Bhutto. I definitely dig strong women. One of the most important political figures of our lifetime (BB not SM) - certainly the most shocking of assassinations - the twice elected Prime Minister of Pakistan was the first woman ever to lead a Muslim nation. I need very little excuse to go and watch a film at the ICA, but as her widower, President Zardari, flounders in wake of flood waters and her son, Bilal, is groomed for that problematic Presidency, what a perfect time to be reminded that hope can exist in the world…

www.lecool.com

Jungle Drums Secret London Feature

Phlight

Artist Simon Tyszko has gone to great pains – around nine month’s work by a team of trained aeronautical engineers - to install a forty foot Dakota plane wing in his fifth floor Fulham flat. No, really. As well as being a comment on that 9/11 thing, it’s also about ‘living with your art’, so visitors are actively encouraged. Climbing on top of it is also welcomed and, if you ask nicely, Simon will even cook a bespoke meal for you and your friends; in what are surely the most interesting surroundings you’re ever likely to eat…

www.phlight.org

Neasden Temple

The world’s second largest Hindu temple – first largest outside of India - really shouldn’t be in Neasden. Tucked away behind the North Circular, it’s not even anywhere near a tube stop; its three giant peaks slowly emerge from behind the warehouses and factories of North-West London as you make the walk there. The closer you get, the more the ultra-ornate carvings – set against their ordinary industrial neighbours – make it seem like some miraculous mirage. But it is real and, better still, you’re actually allowed to reverently roam around its even more intricate interior…

www.mandir.org

Secret Kitchens

It’s no secret that the most exciting way to eat out in London is by visiting its secret kitchens. These days everyone’s a chef, and lots of those chefs are inviting perfect strangers round to their flat/house/studio for supper. There are lots of them out there, and due to the illicit (ok, ok, illegal) nature of their existence, you generally won’t find out their addresses until you’ve been granted a place at the table (usually via email). What I can tell you is that three of the best – if you can find them - are Tony Hornecker’s Pale Blue Door, The Secret Ingredient and The Underground Restaurant…

http://tonyhornecker.wordpress.com/

http://marmitelover.blogspot.com/

http://www.facebook.com/pages/City-of-London-United-Kingdom/The-Secret-Ingredient/114200085161?ref=ts&__a=26

Cycle tracks will abound...

Cycle tracks will abound in Utopia’ said H.G. Wells once, and by the sight of the big blue Barclays’ beasts
booming it around the city you’d be forgiven for thinking we’re almost there. London is all a-bike, its new mantra two tyres good, four (or more) bad. So it’s time to get on yer bikes and ride, and if you’re in the market for new wheels (and maybe a machine that is slightly sleeker than the blue behemoths) you should make for Re-cycling
. Not only are all of their wares second hand and, therefore, greener – to say nothing of cheaper - than yer average, they also operate a ’no lemons’ policy. Friendly staff and an uber ethical ethos mean positivity is in pole position; indeed, it’s like your man H.G. said, ‘every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race…’

Brasil, if you will...

Brazil (Brasil, if you will) is exceeded in fame for football and flip flops only by fun. Lashings and lashings of fun; from carnival to Copacabana the stuff oozes from every pore of the nation’s very being. So you can trust its representative in London, Jungle Drums Magazine
, to throw one heck of a fiesta; they’re putting on four gigs over four months for free and, of course, for fun, damnit. The snappily titled Sunday Live Sessions
will be stirring up your soul and providing funky Afro-Brazilian beats, energetic drumming and old school ska and bossa nova in Camino’s Kings Cross yard. Oh, and big fat jugs of Monday misery making Amstell on offer. So go ahead, Latin up your London life while the summer’s still going strong…

Chill pill...

Poetry is so hot right now. Rhyming things – or not – in verse is totally in. Forget goatee beards, a faint smell of nutmeg and clicking fingers as applause, the sonnet is officially on it. From the Southbank’s Year of the Poet to more street spoken wordists like Scroobius Pip, everyone’s a poet (and, yes, they very definitely do know it). But how should one separate the marvellously metronymic from the iambic pap? Well, getting yourself down to Chill Pill at Shoreditch’s Scream Bar is a fantastic start. Hosted by Mr. Gee, the Russell Brand Show’s poet laureate, it boasts all of the backstreet-basement, NYC vibe and none of the pretentiousness that can sometimes be associated with the avant garde. And with a door fee of absolutely nada, why not drift in and get down with what’s happening tonight?