Being Beta

Exercises in the higher banter with One of 26. Elsewhere called 'poet of adland'. By a whipple-squeezer. Find out why being beta is the new alpha: betarish at googlemail dot com

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

On buses and memory

Slow to report back on this, but on Monday night Will Self, in the sedate surroundings of The Geological Society, nominated Stockwell Bus Garage as London's most important building.

Naturally I didn't take notes, which makes me even more glad that Self rehearsed his arguments for the Evening Standard earlier that day too.

A number of things did stand out from his peroration though (amazing isn't it, you spend some time in Self's company, and you end up taking on his vocabulary), not least his basis for arguing why the garage was important - the last reminder of an age of municipal building that could be considered both moderne and truly democratic - and the fact that the site of the building, a bomb site, was (is?) the bed of the long-lost River Effra, now culverted but once important enough that Raleigh sailed up it to visit Elizabeth I; and that psychogeography is reflected in the undulations of the whale-backed roof.

And if you now have an image of buses borne along long-lost rivers, welcome to my mind.

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