Thursday, May 11, 2006

Your daily dead white guy Major-General James Wolfe, the "Victor of Quebec" who captured the city from the French in 1759 and was killed in battle. He has a statue outside the Royal Observatory in Greenwich, which is where I was today. Despite being surrounded by people, writing letters to friends and reading about historical figures, I was bored, lonely and depressed. From the top of the hill you can see the whole of London spraddling out beneath you, and I finally realised that the history and the richness of the city that I love so much is just paved over, dead, fossilized and gone. In it's place is garbage, bad music, crime, poverty and distrustful neighbors. And no matter how may biographies I read, how many museums I go to, how many people I talk to, I'm never going to get to experience the City I needed, so I might as well pack it in and go home now.
Blackout. Curtain. Houselights up.


Laura said...

What? I don't know - I thought that was kind of cool about the city - it's a living thing. Not only are you walking in the footsteps or history, you're living amongst it - making it. Not only am I walking down the street where Oscar Wilde once solicited prositutes, I'm walking down the same street Nicole M.Q. Johnson did on her way to the Samuel French store - three blocks from where my tour group left me when I went to the bathroom at Planet Hollywood and was therefore lost and alone in London when I was in high school.

But I understand depressed and lonely. I've just been crabby today. It's a crabby day. ...going to go home to some Starbucks ice cream now.

Chris said...

I agree with Laura, cities are living things and like all living things they have parts that can be painful or hurtful. And there is the foziled layer but above it is another that's being formed. I had those days with London when I was there, but it still was this place that housed and increable wealth of knowelege and future. I also get the depressed and lonely. I've been feeling that way lately too.

A W Eglinton said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
A W Eglinton said...

Dammit! I keep making these lengthy comments and realise after I've clicked 'publish' that there are tons of spelling mistakes! So I end up deleting the comment...pfft

Loneliness and the city vs loneliness and the countryside...think I'll opt for loneliness and the universe, at least I'd be able to see the bloody stars!

I was reading parts of 1984 again last night. Fuel for a night without definition. Got me thinking about modernisation, technology, city life, surveillance etc.

Came to the temporary conclusion at 11:43 that modernisation is the Orwellian vision in action: capitalism/materialism becomes the predominant religion: the modern home is the church/temple, the media is the preacher/priest, and the societal structure shifts from a community/collective base of production to an individual base of consumption. Instead of challenging the fundamental raison d’ĂȘtre questions of life and trying to provide answers for them, it removes the questions from the picture all together and posits the ‘here and now’ as all-important so that having the latest pair of K-Swiss, the fastest PC, or knowing what Tom Cruise had for dinner last night actually becomes significant.

A W Eglinton said...

Niki, I saw the bookmark for 'Six in the city' and it looks great! Based on the design I made a little web badge. If you want you can paste it on your blog and represent!

To display it just click here copy and paste the line of code wherever you want it to appear on your blog.

Andrew. :)

Nicki said...

Nice, thanks Andrew. :)

Laura said...

Feel better Nicki, and even if you decide to come home early, don't forget about theatre - which is why you're there - and get as much out of being there while you can as far as theatre. I'm sure you're doing a great job.

Who is this guy who can correctly punctuate raison d’ĂȘtre while commenting on a blog? He's made some very interesting points about contemporary society. I liked the idea of media becoming the priest/priestess of the home. That's why I don't have a TV! I am, however, highly influenced by movies. I think he would get a lot of the new book Not Buying It. I read a really interesting article about it in the most recent issue of Bitch, but I can't tell you any more than that.