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Monday, December 03, 2007

Lambeth's loony bin

I have a weird relationship with Lambeth. I hate it, and yet keep returning to live there like a dog returning to its own vomit. So I guess I must love it. I do - I love St Leonard's church which has stood there, more or less, since 900 AD. I love its graveyard full of famous Victorians. I love the Rookery in Streatham, the Brixton Academy, the old gateposts at St Matthews, Brixton which still say: "Carriages to London 2d".

What I don't love particularly is that Lambeth is home to all of the UK's village idiots. Saturday morning, at 9:30, if you venture out upon that stretch of the A23, you will find the loonies. Bless them, it's not their fault, but really! It's like Shaun of the Dead.

There's a 7'2" unsuccessful transvestite who strides, bejewelled and under-dressed, along the high road, his tight leather skirt barely coping with his ginormous gangly gait.

There's a tiny little mad woman, skinny as a rake, with long flowing grey hair and one arm decked in enormous, thick, heavy chains. She keeps her head down (and does not seem to mind the cold) and supports her arm with her other hand because of the weight of the chains. Once as I passed, she looked up and I smiled at her. Her entire face lit up and her child-like blue eyes looked so happy at that slight human interaction.

There is a hunchbacked elderly Jamaican woman who struggles slowly, slowly up the road with about eight bags stuffed full... of kitchen towels. She just buys kitchen towels. Her name is Bag Lady.

There is a mad shouting man, always with some cut or blood on his face, who sits and puts the world to rights at various bus stops.

There is Mad Raspberry Man, who the other day got on my bus and, because the windows were fogged up, he got upset and started blowing raspberries at them. "I can't see. PLAAARRRRT. Can't see. PLAAAAART... Rasp raspy rasp rasp."

And now there is BAD SPOTS.

The other day I was going to a craft fair with all my cards and jewellery, and had been getting very stressed in my flat trying to sort everything out and price each item. As a consequence, I had gone red. When I go red, I get patchy. It goes away quickly, but if I have spots or any hidden blemish on my face, the red heat makes them prominent. Hence I always wear makeup in case I blush.

Well I had not put make-up on my face because I was too busy. And I must have looked slightly spotty. As I exited my flat, I noticed a really dirty man in glasses staring at me from the bus stop opposite. His brown hair was matted, his beard was dirty, his glasses did not fit his grey face, and his shoes were unlaced and barely there.

As I passed him, he shouted out: "BAD SPOTS! BAD SPOTS!"

"Coming from you, that's a compliment" I snapped back. But his comment had a cathartic effect on me - I had a grin on my face for the next hour every time I thought of it. So his name forever more will be Bad Spots.

31 comments:

Tuscan Tony said...

Bloody hell, Merms, you make Lambeth sound like it was modelled on the Cantina scene from Star Wars. Which it probably is.

The Hitch said...

Mermaid
The brother (now sister) of tory turncoat shaun woodward is a 7 foot tall tranny, used to see "her" cycling around westbourne grove in a leather mini skirt *shudders*
Wonder if she has moved?

The Hitch said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
The Hitch said...

PS
I have a better local nutter, this is easy to achieve when you have a nutters sheltered housing complex nearby.
This one has a penchant for either cammoflage or luminous clothing (must enjoy the contrast) he has a wheeled walking frame equipped with flashing lights , a horn and occasionaly ventures forth with a megaphone.

Gorilla Bananas said...

Wonderful! I bet these misfits all love you for taking an interest in them. Don't worry about the facial blemishes, it's a sign of high fertility. A second puberty in fact.

Tuscan Tony said...

GB - but does one want the second puberty erupting all over the visage?

john.g. said...

Having worked in LONDOOM a lot,I can confirm that the place IS full of f*cking idiots!

(Apart from mermaids)!

Anonymous said...

I used to go to what was then called the Borough Beaufoy Boys school, one of the highlights of which was a visit by the actor George Baker. We were all thrilled. Gary Wilmot was also a pupil there, but not many people know that. I was always late and getting into fights with fat f*****s, as they cannot move very fast and you can run around them kicking their fat arses as you go. Some jumped up marxist/feminist retards changed the name of the school to Lilian Bayliss academy or some such rot, and filled it full of nutters, hence your problem Miss Mermaid. As ye sow, so shall ye reap.

The Hitch said...

HEY
has being spotty f**** up posh spices life?
Yes she is married to a retard, hates herself and is an alcoholic anorexic, however she is happy.
Get on the sunbed S******
Or go on holiday if you can find somebody to feed the four legged mick hucknall.

Mermaid of Moorgate said...

Ha! Indeed, no-one wants a spotty face! Thankfully they die down after a few minutes but it's quite embarrassing!

Hitch, I think it may be the same tranny. It sounds v. similar. And s/he hangs around the road where there is a Conservatives meeting place. THe plot thickens.

But- I object to having Monty likened to that sycophantic son of a goat Mick Hucknell.

Mermaid of Moorgate said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
ishouldberich said...

Nutters are something of a tradition round your way mermaid, as the notorious Bedlam mental hospital was located in Lambeth where the war museum is now. Wicki says about a previous Bedlam, "For a penny one could peer into their cells, view the freaks of the 'show of Bethlehem' and laugh at their antics, generally of a sexual nature or violent fights.In 1814 there were 96,000 such visits." We can now of course view all this for free in any town on a Friday and Saturday night. It goes on, "Entry was free on the first Tuesday of the month, where visitors were permitted to bring long sticks with which to poke and enrage the inmates." You can look at it as participating in a rich cultural tradition, and you don't have to pay a penny or wield a stick. Makes you proud to be British.

Dennis said...

So that's where the MPs go at the weekends.

Just down the road from Parliament. Very handy.

Mermaid of Moorgate said...

I found a new one this morning - a poor old Jamaican wearing a multiplicity of towels of many colours, wheeling himself in and out of traffic in his chair.

Mermaid of Moorgate said...

John G - LONDOOM ... I like it... So true. It's trying to crush my Christmassy spirit. But it WILL NOT SUCCEED!!!! NEVER!

Daisy said...

i had someone make a comment like that to me (more than once)...i just looked at him and said "i've been called worse by better than you" and walked on...as if it was going to change MY life...lmao

btw...nice to see you Dennis...have missed you...

fingerlessgloves said...

Given that the Turner Prize has been won by a geezer dressed in a teddy bear suit wandering around a Berlin Museum ( he hasn't got a name yet, but I could think of a few ), are you sure that these loonies aren't an art installation work set loose on the local citizenry by that other lunatic asylum called Lambeth Borough Council? Personally I think we should send the Turner teddy bear on a tour of the Sudan to promote the obvious superiority of our culture.

Dennis said...

Hullo, Daisy, thanks! I have been v. busy.

jonesy said...

"......any evening any day, doing things the Lambeth way, that's why we're all, doing the Lambeth Walk...OI!" Are these loonies singing this little ditty as they wend their way through that veil of tears known as Brixton Road? If so, I think you can safely assume that you haven't woken up yet.

electro-kevin said...

I suffered terribly from spots from teenage into early twenties - not just my face either. I woke up one morning with my back stuck to the mattress.

I really don't know how I'm not physically scarred though I'm sure it made me the quiet person I am now.

As soon as the spots went and my complexion cleared...

... I lost my hair !

Rather like Basil Fawlty I shook my fist at the sky and shouted "Thank yooooou, Goddd !" angrily.

Little bro' once took a nutter to see a panto (an adult nutter that is). At the part where the audience were shouting at Buttons "He's behind yoooou !" and where Buttons turns to see the caped pervert behind him and then says to the audience "Well why didn'tchya tellll meeee ?" Nutter gets up and shouts "I DID fuckin' tell ya !"

As for your toilet, Mermybabythingycuddlywuddly pumpkin - have you tried those special semi-spherical rubber washers ? They prevent your seat from moving around (most irritating that). Alternatively get one of those French type loose that you squat over - dispenses with the lid, see.

;-)

Another DIY tip from Electro-Kev, the man with a van a thang and a huge wang.

electro-kevin said...

French type LOOS. I know you're a blonde girly and a typo at this juncture could lead to confusion and a terrible DIY accident.

Electro-Kevin Bzzz !

Mermaid of Moorgate said...

EK - thanks for all the DIY tips, not sure how to erase the image of "your back stuck to the mattress" though...

Dennis! Why is your profile set to private now? Lemme on there!

The Hitch said...

KEV
No wonder you lost your faith,
God clearly hates you (+:

Mermaid of Moorgate said...

Hitch, that's the bile we have come to know and love. I don't think God hates EK quite as much as I Spy Strangers. I've just had a stroll over to Guido and discovered some roight ol gems oi ave!

Don't worry EK, I got ISS on some appalling use of the English language.

electro-kevin said...

Serves me roight for blarggin' whoilst pissed, see. Oi was art wi' da locals on Sar'dy noit an 'aad me soom soiderr.

Thanks for the support BTW. I can't be arsed to engage with I Spy Strangers to tell you the truth.

He sounds a terribly earnest chap.

The Hitch said...

kev
terribly going to get his arse kicked by Hitch
will pop over.

The Poet Laura-eate said...

A wonderfully 21st C Dickensien snapshot of Lambeth life!

I don't know why trannies bother - don't they see that the market for sensitive men in touch with their feelings is far larger than the market for lonely middle-aged women who don't pass for convincing women anyway?

Surely there's more cuddles in ones' life if one learns to accept ones' born gender than effectively castrate/isolate oneself (I mean you can do the dressing up bit either way). Plus in what sense does it solve the problem of feeling one is 'neither one thing nor the other'?

Impressed you have evidently embraced your mermaidhood without seeking surgical 'reassignment' anyway! Uniqueness is infinitely preferable to a poor facimile of physical conformity.

mutleythedog said...

Its always been like that - its better than the huddles of teenage mothers, tattooed 'lads' and NEETS who clutter up my High Street...

I shall be in London for Christmas and I have a few pennies to donate to each of them ...

Dennis said...

Mermaid, my profile is open & so is my blog. But I have resolved to be less of a curmudgeon. Hard to believe, I know.

My first experience of a transvestite was in St James's Park. Aged about 12, I had never seen one before. I thought there was something odd about the "lady" in a frock. The (in retrospect) Jack Lemmonesque legs were a giveaway, also the lipstick which looked as if it had been applied with a washing-up mop.

She was quite harmless, minding her own business, just happy to be walking along on display. Then two policemen arrived and she was dragged away. I wonder what happened to her, back at the station.

Newmania said...

That man was a Lambeth Coucil surveyor driven mad by a requirement to list and identify the "Bad spots" in the Borough. As this is like idenfying the damp patches in a deluge he naturally lost his wits and is now a sort of municipal lost Jap soldier , a LA Ancient Mariner doomed to roamm the brorough shouting "Bad Spots Bad Spots " forever



A beautuful lost and moonlit post MM a tranquil acceptance touched my heart reading your strangely enchanting vision.


Quick snog?...just asking

Old Tarf said...

MM-You coming to visit me, in the land of the men in white coats?????