Wednesday, February 11, 2009

London Calling: Day 3

OK, for reals, I may have to chew my feet off before coming home, like a raccoon caught in a trap. My dogs ache. Despite London's stellar public transportation system--extra props for the attractive strangers I've casually brushed against on the Bakerloo line--I've done a hell of a lot of walking here.

Yesterday started with a jam-filled donut from Tesco, because I am powerless to resist a bin full of pastries filled with simple sugars and lightly dusted with crack. Also, I'm cheap. After licking the crumbs off my hands, watchband, and wallet, I hiked to the British Library, hurrying past everything but a diary belonging to Lewis Carroll and any item that may have been touched by a Beatle, even the Ringo-y remnants.

From there, I kicked it to the other side of Euston Road, pausing several times to collect the pieces of my face that froze, shattered, and fell to the sidewalk. My next stop was The Wellcome Collection, an offbeat but insanely interesting bit of museum-age that focuses on medical oddities and tidbits from, um, Mister Wellcome's, uh, collection. For reals, the museum says that it concentrates on "the connections between medicine, life, and art" which I find very appealing. I probably had enough science-y talents to have been an M.D. but my lack of compassion and patience ensured that I would've been beaten to death with an outdated issue of People after telling a feverish sickie that if he'd been smarter, maybe he could heal himself.

Their current exhibition is about War and Medicine, covering everything from the creation of the first prosthetic noses to the fact that condoms distributed to the German military were labeled "Discard After Using". Upstairs in the permanent gallery were all kinds of oddities, from Napoleon's toothbrush to a collection of ancient Japanese sex toys to Benjamin Disraeli's death mask. No, I didn't know who he was either.

Next up was the British Museum which is beyond overwhelming with its overstuffed rooms flowing into overstuffed rooms, eras and empires bumping into each other. It's a bit like crawling into Wikipedia but without all the made up bullshit. I spent over two hours there and just covered The Egyptians, The Greeks and The Romans. I'm pretty sure if I gathered my things and took up residence there, nobody would notice unless they found my droppings under the Rosetta stone.

Leaving the BM (snickersnicker), I was one more Elgin Marble away from a culturally-induced aneurysm. I ducked into A Taste of Evil Spice restaurant, an Indian joint just off of Oxford Street. It was packed and the scrawl on their chalkboard shouted about a £5 lunch special. Score, right? But here's the thing. Everyone here has been nice, if a bit distant. I know my personality is an acquired taste--like pralines or Steely Dan or midget porn--but sometimes I think people hear this A-merican accent, see the Hamburger Helper flying out of my mouth, and immediately deduct a hundred IQ points.

I took a seat, sucked down a Diet Coke Mean Joe Greene-style and asked for the aforementioned lunch deal. The waiter--who had the overhanging brows and lush 'stache of a very powerful wizard--shook his head and said nope, that was just until 2:00 so I'd have to order from the menu. Yeah, sure, whatever but as soon as the words "garlic naan" tumbled off my tongue, a group of British dudes strolled in, asked for the lunch special and The Wiz gave them a nod. I almost walked out but was afraid he'd turn me into a tapestry. Before I'd realized that refills weren't free, a table full of Swedes was getting the "just till 2:00" line--the Screwed Plate Special--and s'more locals got the deal. If I hadn't been sucking the curry sauce out of my sweater, I would've said something.

I tubed back to the hotel, changed out of my clothes--which had started to smell like wet rabbits full of deviled eggs--and headed south to Brixton to see Russell Brand. If you're not familiar with Mister Brand, he's a comedian/former BBC radio host*/walking erection/Forgetting Sarah Marshall's Aldous Snow who lives his life like he's put out an Amber Alert for finding trouble. Google him, kids. He's brash and egotistical and overdone and awesome. The two hours of his show focused on his recent troubles--plural--crammed with well-crafted wordplay about everything from his overworked meatstick** to his crush on Helen Mirren. After the show, he strutted off the stage and into to the lobby looking for women to nail. "If you come backstage," he said "It's not for an autograph. Unless you want me to sigh your uterus". No, he didn't pick me. Probably because he could smell my sweater.

* I think part of the reason I like him is because he, too, has been fired from almost every job. Granted, Russell's sackings have been sex and/or drug-related and one of mine was 'cause I parked in the Visitor space in front of the office.
** He won The Sun's "Shagger of the Year" award three times, so it's now the Russell Brand Shagger of the Year award. By contrast, I once got a trophy for correctly tying my shoes.

And here are the snappy snaps.

The sun gave us about fifteen minutes of foreplay before disappearing for the rest of the afternoon. In a related story, I think I once dated the sun.

Respecting the treasures of the British Museum. Also, WHERE THE FUCK ARE YOUR PUPILS?

When I stopped to take this picture, a guy walked past me and said "Nice haircut." I didn't know whether he was being serious or sarcastic and that bothered me for the rest of the evening. It STILL bothers me.

"I'm into threesomes. Two girls and me," he said. "Because I'm trying to find the right girl and it's quicker if I go through them in pairs." Then he signed some chick's boobs, for probably the 97th time...that day.

And then he tricked me into bed. Damn you, Russell Brand, you floppy haired minx.

19 comments:

deutlich said...

I would do very, very naughty things to Russel...

Fenz said...

I lived next door to the british museum for 6 months and never set foot in there *blushes*. I'll have to go back some day!! I'm seeing Russ here on the 20/3, can't wait!

Paige said...

Sounds like you are having ball --I am so jealous!

The Imaginary Reviewer said...

I think you've seen more of the British cultural landscape in the last three days than I had in 24 years of living in the country.

That last pic made me laugh out loud. Bravo! Oh, and from it, I'd say the guy outside the gig wasn't being sarcastic.

*Akilah Sakai* said...

Hands down!! You are probably the best person to travel with. If there were boring sites on the itinerary, you'd still make it crazy-fun.

Petunia Face said...

Nice haircut. In a very nice way. Seriously, love it. There is no way that guy was being sarcastic--you are too cute.

Sharon, The Queen Blogger said...

Thank you, thank you for journaling your British Adventures. I'm loving it!

angelsroy33 said...

OMG AGAIN, you are the funniest!!! I laughed/cried and peed my pants reading this, while wishing I was there traveling w/ you! And don't let anyone make you think your haircut isn't awesome. You are SO PRETTY,-he was just wishing for what he couldn't have and had to be a jerk! And BTW, GREAT pic in bed w/ R.Brand!!!

coach99 said...

You didn't say " yinz got any of that daily special?" did you? Maybe you can pretend to be mute..that way they won't recognize the 'accent' and rip you off so fast...unless they don't like oral impaired. I am sure Russell Brand would not like the oral impaired women.
BTW...love your hair :)

Katie said...

Oh.My.Gosh.

I just came across your blog and I am so excited that I have found the funniest blog in ALL of the world!! I'm totally pimping it out. Keep up the awesome posts so I can live vicariously through your wit (I gotz none)

Dexter Colt said...

No "Lunch Deal" for J-money?! That's it...I am totally going to fuck over my British underlings tomorrow. Yes, I have dominion over a few Brits living here in the states. They will pay...

Leif Pettersen said...

Your tongue is exactly as long as I hoped it would be.

Also, more in-bed shots please.

I'm pissed at Russel. He's the catalyst for the death of humo(u)r in the U.K. right now, which is burning my ass on several freelance writing fronts. Meanwhile, he's selling out live concerts. Thanks asshole!

Xenia said...

If it makes you feel better, I think you're licking a bust of Alexander the Great. As for his pupils, they were likely painted in in antiquity. They didn't really start to carve those suckers in until the 2nd century AD.

Yes, I know I'm a dork. And I think I actually have camped out at the BM (snicker) before.

Robbie said...

I can say, without any doubt, you have seen more of London in the last day or two, then most Londoners have in a life time.

ck said...

If Brand first got famous hosting a Big Brother spin-off, does that make him Britain's dirty version of Seacrest? Brand Out.

Red Squirrel said...

Great post, and - while I think your hair is cool - no-one would say 'nice haircut' in London without being deeply sarcastic.

As an aside, London is populated with dicks.

Bad luck on the refills btw. It's actually cheaper to have a Cobra (or Kingfisher preferably) with an indian meal for less than a soft drink. :)

the frog princess said...

I fucking LOVE Russel Brand... and I'm sure I would love fucking him as well, though lord only knows what sort of organisms would be transferred in the process.

Also, I maintain that London sidewalks are literally harder than any other sidewalk I've ever encountered. Even in the comfiest shoes, my feet were killing me.

Underfunded Heiress said...

I loved Russell Brand in Forgetting Sarah Marshal!

Your last pic is hilarious!

Reagan said...

That flag picture is beautiful!