I’ve just had an idea for a regular weekly thing. I’m calling it The Friday Fiddle.
Every Friday, I’m going to post a picture of a pigeon I’ve seen during the week that I wouldn’t mind fiddling with.
How about this little beauty for starters:
Spent the day in recovery yesterday after an all-nighter on Saturday at Waterloo Station. Kicking off everywhere it was. A load of us got totally nutted on some Red Bull. Genius too, coz they’ve started making it in really small bottles clearly designed for the pigeon. Manageable. Easily accessible. Perfect. Mental stuff too.
Took this of Mart at some point. No idea which one, but I think it was round about the moment he said he had no idea where he was. I told him we’d flown to Manchester. Think he believed me too. In fact, I’m not sure he realised we weren’t in Manchester till this morning.
Here he is:
Could hardly fucking stand up never mind string a sentence.
Then suddenly, out of nowhere he goes: “Bri. Shortbread.”
I warned him against it, but he wouldn’t listen and downed it in one.
Sure enough, two minutes later and there he was chucking up everywhere:
Then there was Ed behind who just stood there staring at a piece of chewing gum for hours. He said it looked like Wales. Jesus.
I vaguely remember flying over the bridge yesterday afternoon, then nothing. Firmly rooted to the ledge for the rest of the day.
So, all things considered, I’m not sure I’m entirely ready for Monday yet.
This year, I decided to spend Valentine’s Day in Peckham. Fancied getting out of the West End where suddenly, for one fucking day only, it’s full of pigeons staring at eachother. Jesus. They’re everywhere. Valentines really is a complete waste of time. A totally made up day. Any pigeons participating should be firmly forced to remain on their fucking ledges. It’s also amazing how many ‘couples’ suddenly come out of the brickwork too. I reckon most of them only got it together for Valentines. Didn’t want to feel left out. Probably all waking up now going, ‘I’m sorry, do I know you?’.
Frankly, I consider it to be a day largely for wankers. That said, Peckham was a right laugh in the end.
Why Peckham? Well, Mart and I sat there yesterday morning listing the least romantic places on earth we could spend the day. Aside from Elephant and Castle, and possibly Walthamstow, Peckham came tops.
Being outsiders in what is generally considered to be a fairly rough part of town, we got a few strange looks at first:
But once they heard who I was, the pigeon who’s been telling it how it is for the pigeons of London for the past five years, they got over it. In fact, I think they were secretly quite into me taking photos of them. They don’t get many outsiders visiting, particularly from the West End.
“Bunch of fucking namby pamby fucking nancies the lot of them,” one of them said. Obviously, we didn’t say a word.
Anyway, it all chilled out after a while despite the fact there were loads of them and they’re all hard as fuck:
Check out the one at the top about to land on the dude below. All he’d done was look at his other half. It wasn’t even a long look, apparently. Just a glance. Jesus.
Then the white bread arrived.
All we could hear was the word ‘cunt’. ‘This cunt’, ‘That cunt’, ‘Fuck off, cunt’, ‘You’re a cunt’, ‘Get out the way, cunt.’ On and on it went. Never heard the word used so much.
Despite feeling a little out of my depth, I quite liked the fact they seemed to ignore Valentines completely. In fact, I don’t remember seeing any ladies at all, or none that I recognised as ladies anyway…
I’ve also never seen white bread like it. Great big thick white slices of it. No poncy seed down there. It’s solid carbs all the way. When I asked one of them whether he’d ever eaten lettuce, he had no idea what I was on about.
Fuck knows how, but Mart managed to get himself his own slice, so he was happy:
Or he was till the dude on the right disappeared with it. Thankfully, Mart decided against pursuing it otherwise he might not be here now.
Still, we made a couple of mates, like Harry The Hat. He’s the one the left with a right gob full:
Harry’s a proper old school gangster who went into retirement a couple of years ago. Said he’d be up for an interview sometime, which rocks.
All in all, I reckon Peckham’s the spot-on choice for any pigeon wanting to give the whole Valentines deal a wide berth, just don’t look any of them in the eye for too long.
Yet again the pigeon has been bypassed by the Chinese. Thrown a large swerve-ball in favour of the rabbit. Eh? Year of the fucking rabbit? Last year it was a tiger, year before that, an Ox. Before that it was a rat, then a pig, then a dog, then a rooster, a monkey, a sheep, a horse, a snake and a dragon. That’s pretty much every animal on the planet covered, and not a pigeon in sight. There’s even one in there that doesn’t exist. Totally made up. A dragon. Jesus, Chinese people. Where’s the pigeon in all this? Surely we’ve done enough good things now to make the list? I’d say we’ve certainly done more for the planet than most of those, with the possible exception of a sheep, and maybe a tiger. And really though, a rooster? At least a rabbit looks alright with the fur and the ears. Who wants to spend a year looking at a wrinkled old bird face wearing a fleshy man-glove? No thanks.
We were gonna head down to Chinatown on Sunday to watch the celebrations but couldn’t face all the smug rabbits looking at us with their pitying eyes. Mart suggested we should interview one. See what their pov is on the whole affair. I think I know where one lives. A massive one locked away in a cage, probably for its own safety. May swing by later. See what it’s got to say for itself. In the meantime, I thought I’d try to get to the bottom of what rabbits have done to make them so special.
As expected, there isn’t much out there apart from the fact they shag a lot. If all you need to get a year is a healthy libido, I know a few pigeons who deserve a fucking decade.
Here’s one fact I found: A list of the most famous rabbits. Funnily enough, bar one, all of them are fictional. Where are the life saving rabbits of WW2 ducking the bullets carrying messages to the front line? Eh? Nowhere to be seen, unlike the pigeon.
And here’s another: ‘Rabbits can purr like a cat when happy.’ Wow. Purr like a cat. Well done. Genius. Here, have a whole year to celebrate the fact you can do a half decent cat impression. I should send the Chinese my mate Doug doing his.
Here he is last summer doing it. Meowing for hours he was:
How about: ‘The average weight of a rabbit is between 2-20lb. The heaviest ever recorded weighed 26lb 7oz.’ In my view, obesity should not be celebrated under any circumstances, especially in this day and age. If anything, the rabbit should be stripped of its year to promote healthy eating. I don’t think openly celebrating an animal that regularly suffers from weight gain sends out the right message at all.
Finally: ‘The longest jump featured in the Guinness Book of Records was 3 metres.’ Okay, that’s not bad for a single jump, but what about finding your way home by flying across the Atlantic? Bet if you gave a rabbit a canoe it couldn’t even navigate its way to Calais, and that’s basically just a straight line.
So, for the last time, let’s do it. Let’s give the pigeon a year. 2012. Year of the pigeon.
Bring it on.
Right. That’s it. It’s official. The sun no longer exists, or it doesn’t in January anyway.
What a month. Jesus. Sorry for the lack of posts but, unlike me though it is, I couldn’t be arsed. Not sure why but this year the whole stinking month really got to me. Asking around, it got to most of us. I’ve written before about the emotional issues associated with a lack of Vitamin D. Remember a couple of summers ago when there was no sun whatsoever?
I seriously reckon for the first time ever, I’ve actually been depressed. Not just mildly irritated or slightly below par, but properly fucking down there. Didn’t leave the ledge for three days. Just sat there staring at the pavement.
At one point it got so bad Mart suggested a trip to the windows of Selfridges might do me some good. Stare at some sparkle for a while. Didn’t help at all. Just got trodden on by a load of lard arse tourists.
He also said exercise works, so we set off for Canary Wharf which was all good till it pissed it down and we had to do a stop off on the Isle of Dogs. Thankfully the dogs were nowhere to be seen, but I was practically suicidal by the time we got home.
Whatever I did, nothing seemed to help. Not even chocolate.
Mart took this of me last Wednesday.
Not a good day:
I seem to remember even the wet between my toes made me feel irrational.
Apparently, January is Soup Month in the US. That kinda says it all. Nothing worth celebrating apart from soup. FFS.
Anyway, it’s February now so I’m feeling slightly better, and it’s a short month so March really isn’t that far away. What also helped was talking to someone who’d had it a whole lot worse…
His name’s Fred and I met him in Soho Square the other day.
This is Fred:
Fred’s other half left him for a pigeon in Hackney on Christmas Eve. Just upped and left, so I asked him how he’d coped.
“I didn’t at the time.” He said. “There I was one minute planning for the festive season, the next she was telling me I was dull, she was bored and had met someone else. At first I ignored her and carried on filling the nest with berries and humming Christmas Carols like Ding Dong Merrily On High. Two days later, I noticed she was gone. That was when it hit me. When I knew. She even left the arse feather I gave her when we met. Broke my heart. Then it went from bad to worse. I spent Christmas on my own and by Boxing Day I decided I’d had enough. Couldn’t bear life in the nest without her. All those memories. So I decided to end it. Fly to the nearest spikes I could find, and throw myself off.”
This is Fred re-creating the moment he threw himself onto the spikes near Leicester Square:
I asked him what happened next.
“It was a miracle. A miracle I tell you. Someone opened the door and a gust of wind blew me over the top of them. Missed them by an inch. Despite landing hard on the pavement, it made me realise life wasn’t so bad afterall. That I had something to live for.”
Then I asked him how long they’d been together. He said it was one of the best weeks of his life. It was at that point I suggested some therapy might also be a good idea.
Finally, the sun’s shining today so I’m off to get me some rays. See if I can’t get the happy juices flowing again. Anyone out there had the same January as me, I suggest you do the same coz this could be it till April.