Monday, 28 November 2005

The new Japanese knot weed

You horticultural types think you've got a problem with Japanese knot weed.
You can't weed it out.
Your systemic injections don't have any effect.
Flame thrower? Watch the fence mum.
You just can't kill it.
Not even with Cillit Bang!

Well, those illegally sold cars are the new scourge.
Bang! And the dirt is gone.
If only.

Thursday, 24 November 2005

The future of Woolwich

You may mock, but I can imagine Pizza Express in Woolwich, maybe in the Arsenal development. I do think that Woolwich has many prospects. The DLR did alot for the Lewisham housing market and that 'new money' brings alot of new energy with it as well as a new dynamic to the whole community.

Woolwich has a good down-to-earth scale about it. There's a centre to it. The square where the winos hang out. The fountain with the most unnatural looking green tint to the water, but it's a green space and it's the heart to the town centre. Where's the centre to Lewisham? We've already got a good start.

I hate pedestrianised High Streets as they are usually deserted outside of shopping hours. Admittedly, I don't frequent Woolwich on a night, but there are a couple of town centre buildings being refurbished into dwellings. This is a great thing. By the very fact of people living in the centre, the pedestrianised road is actually used, not just by shoppers in the day but by residents in the evening.

Whether the burghers of Woolwich can lure the multinationals to open stores in Woolwich is one thing. Whether Woolwich should turn into another faceless shopping precinct with the same old shops is another. I read that Tesco might come to Woolwich. On one hand, that's great, but on the other, we've already got Sainsbury. Having a huge Tesco will inevitably mean a large car park somewhere.

I like Woolwich because it's of a human scale. Taking a train to and from Woolwich Arsenal is so simple and lands you in the centre of the town. Lewisham is too imposing. The train station is cut-off from the shops, the Lewisham Centre building is hulking and superbly ugly, the only sense of human scale and personality is the Italianate church. I hope the proposed redevelopment will address this.

Most people will never look at the buildings in places like Woolwich. They get in and get out. Don't blame them, but we've got some tasty architecture here. I feel a bit of photography coming on to prove it.

Now, back to Pizza Express. Plumstead Common is a prime area for some tasty nosh. Get a map and look at the commons around London. The majority of them have either been posh since dinosaurs dined there or they've been gentrified already. As sure as day follows night, it will happen to Plumsteadshire.

Bike Repairs

Bike repairs. Well I always go to Garozzo in Blackfen; they've never let me down. However, I'm no grease monkey. Still, they are always nice and helpful.
Logistically, Garozzo is great because I leave the bike with them and can take the 51 bus straight back to dear old Plumsteadshire. I haven't got a clue whether they are cheap or not though. Also, Garozzo are Yamaha & Piaggio dealers.

I feel a modern day parable coming on.

Once, I had a flat tyre. I got the bike to Aye Gee in Welling and a chap there was super helpful, he was full of advice and knowledge and willing to share. Anyway, they couldn't do anything for me at Aye Gee, but proceeded to load my bike onto a vehicule transporting lorry and took me to Watling Tyres in Catford. Dear old Mr Aye Gee could've left me stranded, but instead demonstrated that people can still be kind and why (in Plumsteadshire), things are all for the best in this best of all possible worlds. A bit like that Samaritan bloke in the Bible.

Plumsteadshire replies

Man alive. I've had a sudden deluge of comments from readers of Plumsteadshire - It's all for the best in this best of all possible worlds etc etc....

As I'm not up to speed with blog commenting protocol, I'm going to post my comments here rather than try to find the relevant post and comment there. Hopefully that way, it's easy for readers to follow up on their original questions.
  • Yes, I'd noticed the new/old cinema in Greewich Village. I've had a drink there and very much like the programme of independant and foreign films. I think that'll be the cinema for the more discerning movie goer. I'll have to say that I was initially put off by the price but now that Filmflops has raised its' price, there's little to persuade me to stay with the gasometer.
  1. Being a modern day Londoner, I like a rant. So here I go about Flipflops. Chavvy kids running around outside Nandos-I-Ain't-Never-Heard-Of-Bird-Flu-A-Go-Go pulling off all the bollard covers and trying to hit each other; innocent film goers being caught up in the crossfire. My advice to the kids is to use the metal bollards themselves. Straight across the back of the neck. A few less soap dodgers is not a bad thing.
  2. Now, what is it about the row of nice glass doors? I've never got to grips with having all these doors but only unlocking 2 pairs? It's a bit like a supermarket, or B&Q. Why have 18 tills if you only ever have 8 open at any one time? Especially when queues are forming. On a Sunday afternoon.
  3. And Co Op. Now don't get me started on the wonderful queue management philosophy adopted by Co Op.
  4. Back to Filmworks. I felt really pleased with myself when I used Orange Wednesdays for the first time ever. I'd saved £7 to (unknowingly) put myself through the most God aweful film since Ishtar. Save yourself. DO NOT SEE THE BROTHERS GRIMM. Anyway, having bought tickets, I bought 2 cups of tea and a sandwich. Bad mistake and we all know it. The price of refreshments in these places is extortion almost beyond the proportions of Halloween Night. How do I manage not to learn? Sneak my own refreshments in. If I have to drink Pepsi or Coke, I don't really need a bucket of the stuff.
  • I could go on but won't. Well, I'll be interested to see if the planned cinema for Woolwich Royal Arsenal goes ahead.

Wednesday, 23 November 2005

Christmas turkey

I've had my first piece of turkey this evening. Can't say it was particularly appealing though. In fact, it has left a sour taste in my mouth.
Went to Filmworks to see The Brothers Grimm. If ever there were a film that lived up to its' title then this is it. Ten minutes in and I should've walked out. Complete lack of direction and an exercise in why you shouldn't cram as many regional accents in one film. Even the special effects weren't up to scratch. Oh, the list goes on. What a waste of 2 hours.
Bernard Matthews come back.
Mr Gilliam. Get yer coat.

On the other hand, Harry Potter is everything I hoped for. Now this was a masterclass of film making. Story, script, acting, design, fx, sound, the lot. If I can dodge past the scuzzy oiks tearing up the Filmworks forecourt and the endless queue outside B&Q (queueing for Nandos), then I'll have to see the Pottmeister again. Bring it on.

Monday, 21 November 2005

(almost) nice view of Plumsteadshire

I thought I was hardened to the cold.
Mais non.
The fantastic chill in the morning is too much to handle. I am a wimp.
It's times like this when I realise whoever/whatever invented hibernation had incredible foresight. Unfortunately, not quite enough foresight to foresee the inflexibility of the working week.

work slave : Sir, may I have three months off around the Winter Celebration period?
line manager : [silence]
work slave : [exit stage left, whilst thinking 'whatever']

The plus side of this chilly atmosphere and I'm not referring to The Addicks' opinion on Manchester Utd, is that Plumstead Common looks absolutely beezer. Crisp low morning sunlight, perfect for dazzling drivers right in the minces as they head towards Welling. The Common has a gentle dusting of frost, apart from where the dodgy cars hang out in no man's land. I almost feel compelled to take a dolly mixture tomorrow.
With this cold snap, I couldn't Adam n Eve it. Macoma Road had been gritted. Stone the crows, the council have done something. Not only that, but they'd stickered the illegally sold cars along Plumstead Common Road too. Hoo bloody ray. But no sooner have the rolling death traps been stickered, the dodgy pikeys have crawled out of the gutters and swapped them with other cars. This is the recurring pattern. As sure as day follows night, the pikeys swap cars as soon as they sniff out the council car stickerer. Get with the programme Greenwich, some of us actually pay your council tax. Why not do something for us? These dodgy pikey cars and the dodgy pikey dealers wouldn't know what tax is if it hit them in the face.

The answer's simple. Zero tolerance. Forget stickers. Pick the things up, take them to a breaker's yard and squash the damn things down to a cube of scrap metal.

Job done.

Wednesday, 16 November 2005

Dragon's Den

No, nothing to do with mother-in-laws. I mean, I wouldn't allow such down-right degrading filthy comments to be made in Plumsteadshire.
I'm talking about my favourite tv programme, Dragon's Den which is back on our screens. Dare I say it, but even the England game on Saturday didn't have as much drama as watching the entrepreneurs being eaten alive by the dragons. How can this geeky programme be edge-of-the-seat watchable? How can it be so captivating when it's not even live?
Dunno. It just is.
Evan Davis is a geek god. Maybe a demi-god because the king of geek chic can only be our bushman, Ray Mears.
Thinking about it, it's odd that two of my favourite programmes live in such diametric worlds from one another.
I love the whackier Heath Robinson inventions on the show. The roller skates for knees was an interesting idea. Pass me the strait-jacket. Maybe Ken Livingstone can implement these into the TFL 10 year plan.

Monday, 14 November 2005

Nice bike

Now this is a thing of beauty. The Yamaha R1 SP. You can keep your MV Agustas and the other fancy Euro pop pops, I'll have one of these. Trouble is though it probably won't last ten minutes parked on the road in London.
Dream on.

Argie Bargie

I'm no football fan i.e. support a club, but I do like to watch a good game. England v Argentina was a must-see by any standards. Now, I don't want to sound like a football pundit, but at the end of the day, it's a game of two halves and the boys did good.
Due to matters beyond my control, I had to miss the second half and it was only after the game, me ol' mate Arun phoned me and filled me in on all the details that I'd missed. Now, this is what puzzles me. If I can easily avoid the whole football season and not give two hoots about the beautiful game, why is it that I am STILL so gutted about missing half of this game? Also, if I don't care about league football, why is it that I have a strong dislike of Man Utd and Chelsea?

Argie Bhaji

Get your hair cut!!!!

Friday, 11 November 2005


I'm not one for standing still whilst the World passes me by. If I wanted this, I'd stand in a queue in Co Op. So onwards and upwards, which is why I have to recommend the Firefox browser. Internet Explorer has had a history of crashing and Safari is not so goody.
It works and it's not Microsoft.


I know it's an old photo but how could I resist?

The Ship

The building works at The Ship seem to be going on forever. What are they doing in there? Building stud walls with Lego? Get on with it people. I'm waiting for Pizza Express to open.

Thursday, 10 November 2005

famous model in Plumstead Co Op

I don't usually look at my till receipts, but today just happened to notice that I was served by J Kidd. I kid you not. Next time you shop at our local inconvenience store, see if you too have had your fusili swiped by Jodie.

Wednesday, 9 November 2005

Plumstead Airport

The ink has barely dried on the scrawlings of potential twin towns for Plumsteadshire and I've already earmarked Thamesmead to be redeveloped as Plumstead Airport.
You see, Christmas (I mean Winter Celebration), is fast approaching and I need to think about my wish list. I started thinking boys toys, then thinking bigger, then started thinking out of the box. Blue sky thinking.
I thought that this'll do nicely.
As you can see, Belmarsh has been utilised to good effect. Maybe we could close a wing ot two, ship the residents out on a prison hulk (it's not a new idea), give the walls a lick of paint and there we have it. It'll be a boon for the 2012 Olympics.
An architectural competition should be arranged, or maybe just cut to the chase and invite Herzog & De Meuron?

Monday, 7 November 2005

Twin Town

Matthew, a chum of mine (not of this manor - he is Lord of Greater Dulwich Heights (formerly know as Forest Hill)), suggested a belter of an idea. It is everywhere, but we never think about it.
Twin Towns.
I love the idea of twin towns. Well, I love it but at the same time, don't know what it means.
So, Plumstead Common needs a twin town.
I'll think on it and will take suggestions too.
Answers on a postcard etc....

Wednesday, 2 November 2005

Merry Christmas everybody!!!!!

Merry Winter everybody!!!!
Doesn't have the same ring does it? Ooops. Can't say 'ring'.
Ring = bells
Bells = Christmas
Christmas = Racist Britain

The lilly-livered politically correct loons are well and truly ruling the asylum. When will this absurd cancer ever stop?

Oh damn. Can't mention liver. That might just offend vegans.

Let's just hope that Greenwich Council don't fall down this same slippery slope that Lambethshire has.

Google maps

The internet is a great thing. Some might say that it's so great, it's bad. I don't.
One of my favourite sites is Google maps. [I don't work for them - ed.]
I like a good map, and being a fully paid-up member of the Apple Mac fraternity, I can't use the Google Earth programme yet.
Sort it out people.

Tuesday, 1 November 2005

Halloween survival guide

Phew. Managed to survive the onslaught of young extortion racketeers last night. I had adopted a cunning tactic.

Option 1 - Play them at their own game.
Remove lampshade from pendant light fitting in hallway.
Knock knock.
Put on bad wig and secondhand dressing gown (available from all good charity shops). Set the lightbulb swinging. Pull open the front door very quickly and raise right arm holding a piece of cardboard fashioned in the shape of a carving knife.
Then watch with glee as the little tikes run for the pavement, begging forgiveness for all their sins.

Option 2 - Pretend it's 1977, we'd enjoyed our Silver Jubilee street parties in the Summer and even though punks were being punks children were once children.
Knock Knock.
"Trick or treat?"
"Oh hello children. Have a bag of Lemon Bon Bons and share them with your brethren."
"Oh thank you very much. Happy Halloween."

Option 3 - Pretend you're not in even though the lights are on.
Now, I know this is the preferred option for most but being Plumsteadshire where all's the best in this best of all possible worlds, I let my partner answer the door whilst I hide in the dining room.

With the Festival of Legalised Extortion out of the way, we've now got the Festival of Legalised Street Explosions, a celebration of suburban terrorism with added bang. Don't we all love it.