April 25, 2006, 20:54
I have decided that I am going to Save Shoreditch Station, which, it has been announced, is to close in June. Partly because it’s just so difficult to actually say ‘Save Shoreditch Station!’, but also because I feel somehow that I can. I would be genuinely interested to see what kinds of people would get involved in such a campaign these days these days – especially with the BNP poised to sweep before them the votes of whoever can be bothered to vote next Thursday – and it might be a useful way of getting to know some of the nuttier and some of the more boring locals.
I did use Shoreditch Station once, a few weeks ago, and I must say I was most impressed by how clean and empty it was at 7pm on a Thursday evening. Maybe, in fact, that’s why they want to close it! Hmm. Nevertheless, I am more then pleased that there is a tube line running straight from my house to Brick Lane, and I am quite prepared to stand alone before a bulldozer or a tank and in front of the cameras of the world’s press to save it, even if it does mean that I will never, ever be able to go back to China.
Ahem. On the subject of tube trains, just what the flaming fuck is a ‘Train Destination Describer’? The one at Whitechapel has been out of action for some time, but even when it was working I’m sure it didn’t actually describe the places where the trains end up. I’m willing to bet it never read “This train is for Ealing Broadway, a fairly bland, nondescript stretch of West London with too many Polish people and nowhere particularly nice to go for lunch”, or “This train goes to Wimbledon, which stars Paul Bethany“. Or even “Customers are advised not to board this train, as it is a Hammersmith and City line train and to be honest, guv, you’d be better off walking, alone, through those long, dark, cold rat-filled tunnels”.
I digress. Maybe I should just go and apply for a job with Transport for London. Maybe it, like the National Health Service, is enjoying its best ever year! Ho ho ho. They pay thirty grand, apparently, according to that song. And the perks – special red Oyster cards that glow in the dark, a snazzy yellow jacket and a non-standard accent – are quite remarkable.