Archive for November, 2005

Close, but no cigar.

If you’ve ever felt the urge to learn how to roll your own cigar (and let’s be frank, who hasn’t ;)) then you may be interested in the tutorials that are currently taking place at Floridita, an authentic Cuban club right in the centre of London.

Under the supervision of Cuba’s cigar rollers, you will be taught what tobacco leaves to use and how to blend them, becoming an expert in rolling, wrapping and storing your own cigar. During the seminar, which is held in the afternoons in 100 Wardour Street, you will have the chance to try several combinations, until you find the flavour that most suits you.

Alternatively, if that sounds like too much hard work, you can pick your ready made cigar from Floridita’s finest selection of cigars available outside Cuba- but watch out: apparently some of them cost more than ?1,000 each.

Regent’s Canal lit up


Pretty lights under the bridges of the Regent’s canal.

Canal towpath lights switched on


the one piece of advice you can be sure the Government won’t listen to.

Can you handle it?

The Sony Walkman Gallery, based in Camden Stables Market (there is one near the Strand, too) is currently showing a photographic exhibition to celebrate over thirty years of rock ‘n’ roll- including rare pictures of the Clash, David Bowie, Debbie Harry and all other usual suspects.

Should you desire to take a picture home, it is possible to purchase them at
While these, unsurprisingly, aren’t free, the bonus is the exhibition is.

Can you handle it? From Nov 10 to Dec 9, The Sony Walkman Gallery
at The Old Proud Gallery, 10 Greenland Street, NW1 0ND.

Metropolis: ‘Visions of London 2005’

The Rainbird Gallery is hosting an exhibition, ending shortly, of oil paintings of our lovely city. Normally this sort of thing comes out looking like the washed-out tourist crap they sell you in Piccadilly Circus, but many of these paintings are actually really lovely evocations of London.

I also like that many of the images are of less, er, celebrated landmarks (e.g. how many oil paintings do you normally see of Farringdon station?).

July 1st 1916

I still can’t imagine almost 20,000 being cut down in less than an hour. That’s the average gate of most premiershp football games. Last nights’ Channel 4 dramatisation of the first few hours of the Battle of the Somme (which went on to claim over 1,000,000 lives from all sides) was deeply moving for all its simplicity and stark brutality.

These men were all volunteers and in less than an hour out of the initial 60,000 a third were dead and many more would join them from their injuries. One of the survivors portrayed last night went on to be one of the driving forces behind the NHS, yet another was an aspiring author who sensed this was his last morning alive and asked a fellow soldier to look after his wife and child in the event of his likely death.

What easy lives we lead nowadays.

Invading my Daily Thoughts

At a good old fashioned English birthday party on Saturday in Canada Water to which the Old Bill came early. Birthday boy RP was shooting off fireworks in the cul de sac, and someone complained. Three police cars and a paddy wagon arrived on the scene, but they weren

Umberto Eco – Tonight

Even better, the complicated mind behind ‘The Name of the Rose’ and, now ‘The Mysterious Flame of Queen Loana’, will be doing a signing tonight at Waterstone’s Piccadilly.

It starts at 7.15, following Eco’s (ticketed. sold out) talk in a nearby theatre.

The signing itself is not ticketed, but he’s a rare and oft-idolised figure, so get there a bit early…


I love saying that.

Mark Lamb’s ‘Farperoo’ is another of those well-illustrated children’s fantasy epics, this one supposedly being more epic and, er, more illustrated, than most others. With the free A5 print being given out at signings, this book could be an eBay success story…

Next signing on Saturday, 26th November, at Foyles. 12 – 2 pm.

Ice wall

The traditional ice rink will be back at the Somerset House from the 24th of November but this year, for the most adventurous ones, it will also feature an ice wall.

With the guidance of expert ice climbers and a full equipment of crampons and ice axes, you will have a maximum of one hour to ascent 8 metres of pure ice, every day until 10 p.m.

The ticket’s price, as well as the wall, is quite steep (excuse the pun), at

Terms of use | Privacy Policy | Content: Creative Commons | Site and Design © 2009 | Metroblogging ® and Metblogs ® are registered trademarks of Bode Media, Inc.