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8
THE GUESTLIST NETWORK | NOVEMBER 2009
From A to B by Thomas O’Brien
The Guestlist Network takes you on walk around London. It’s healthy, meditative and free. So, download the playlist
below, put it on your i-pod for mood music and follow the directions. It may help you prise open the city’s meaning,
charm a would-be lover or just improve your poor sense of direction.
Hungerford Bridge
Embankment Pier
Embankment
Tube
Cleopatra´s Needle
Waterloo Bridge
W.T. Stead Memorial Plaque
Blackfriars Bridge
Towards
Temple Tube
As London-folk we spend most of from the south side. There you’ll
our existence suffocating behind clap eyes on a long stretch of wide
barren-brickwork, rusty railway – yes, adequately wide - pavement,
bridges, phallic towers and bub- roofless sky and a gushing river.
bling crowds. Personally, I find it It perks you right up like a tropical
all gets very hot; very dry. A jour- Kia-Ora after a stroll in the Sahara.
ney down to the Thames is a free
source of refreshment which I’d
recommend to anyone feeling
slightly shrivelled by this relentless
pace. The walk I’m proposing is
from ‘Point A’ (Hungerford Bridge)
to ‘Point B’ (Blackfriars Bridge) and
it will take a maximum of thirty min-
utes. I’d also recommend doing this
Victoria Embankment
in the evening, say 9.00pm, when
the worker bees have loosened
ter-blue ship dock for the Thames posts. Walk three hundred feet so you can’t miss it. Head up the find yourself surrounded by boats
their ties and the neon wall-paper
Clipper. If you’re feeling particularly from the pier and you’ll lock eyes crumbling stairway to the dilapi- named after Bravestarr characters
looks a bit swisher.
lazy, get on. You can use your oys- with a familiar monument - Cleo- dated platform. According to wiki, – “Gundog”; “Golden Star”; “Clip-
ter card to skip the whole walk, but patra’s Needle. She’s eyeballed by it’s ‘accepted’ (by God knows per-Lite”.
Your starting point is Embankment
The view from Embankment
it’s worth sticking with me. This part two huge iron cast Sphinxes. This who) that Waterloo offers the best W.T. Stead invented the idea of the
station, so catch a rat there and exit
of the river’s a real tourist hub, lined genuine Egyptian obelisk is formed view of the river. The view it offers red-top ‘sensation story’ – those
The London Eye should be in front
by lovers spending a moment, city from red-granite and stands at 21 from here is pretty warped. Look graphic scoops about sex-crimes
of you. If like me, your sick of see-
boys spending pounds or drunks metres high. She’s seen her fair through the legs of the bridge, all- or bloody murder us public can’t
Embankment
ing it on every postcard/X-Factor
spending a penny, but just like most share of trouble: violent storms sunk akimbo and laid out single-file like get enough of. In one edition of his
Walk
intro package/The Apprentice then
places in London, the further you her to the bottom of the ocean and the girly-girls in a Palladium chorus newspaper The Pall Mall Gazette,
it might not garner much of a reac-
get from the tube station the more her scars from the WW1 bombing line. Peer into the bridges Victorian he ran a cover story telling “faint-
tion, but it looks a lot more impres-
the crowd starts to thin out. Whilst still remain. undergarments and trip out like a hearted readers” not to buy the pa-
Playlist:
sive in the metal than the digital.
we’re on the subject of pennies and Dali painting. per the following day as he would
When you reach the needle, stop, By the way, while you’re up here, be breaking a gruesome story. Nat-
On exiting Embankment station the
clamber over the two iron sphinxes you better make your sight-seeing urally, Londoner’s bought it in their
river will get all up in your eyeline.
guarding the obelisk and head out quick. There’s a homeless guy thousands, burying themselves
Look up to Hungerford bridge, let
onto stone-pancake that overhangs who spends his evenings here and knee-deep in his serialized exposé
1. Ellie Goulding –
your pupils trace the shiny-steel
the river. It’s a statueless plinth, he’s anti-human, pro-seagull. I’ve of child prostitution.
Starry Eyed (Jakwob Remix)
across the river – halfway across,
thankfully free of the “me, me, me”s watched him sweep the paving- As you approach the end of Victoria
2. Burial – Foster Care look down. Here’s the skateboard
o
n
e
from Gormley’s Trafalgar Square stones like it’s his f*cking front-
graveyard: a concrete island sup-
project. Sitting here at night is room.
3. Scuba – Dream
porting the bridges brackets where

P
i
n
g
s
t
magical, an intimate tête-à-tête with
4. Night Flight – The Revenge
countless skateboarders have
London’s lightscape – my personal Jump down from the outpost and

5. Synkro – Tell Me
ditched the remnants of a mis-
city hotspot. The Oxo tower red head further along the road. The
timed pop shove it, a worn-out Van
:

A
d
r
ian

and swollen, the wheel’s perfect next thing of note is an etched-iron
6. Synkro – You Don’t Know
or an empty spray-can – “Skate in
circle, the party-boats zetting past
P
h
o
t
o
7. Teebs – Unknown 4
Peace”.
Cleopatra´s Needle
oblivious. I challenge someone to
come here and not taste it.
8. Fever Ray -
Seven (Martyn’s Seventh Mix)
You should be standing next to Em-
bankment Pier at this point - an oys-
pounds, flicking a coin into the river The more curious amongst you
9. Constrobuz – is said to bring good luck, so pay might want to take a quick sortie
Lyme Disease Death Cult
your fare before tramping onward. down the slippery steps in front of
10. Fuzzy Logik –
you. They lead onto the exposed
The phenomenal view
The Way You Move Follow the road left and wander sand-banks of the river, the home to

11. Burial & Four Tet –
down the Victoria Embankment, needles of a different kind – Tracy’s Embankment you should see point
Moth
use the coal-black lamp posts as and Monica’s, not Cleopatra’s. B, Blackfriar’s Bridge. As you head
your waypoints. Despite attempts They aren’t huge and granite, but up the snaking ramp, spin around
12. Justify –
Ramadan Man and Appleblim
to squeeze it in over the centuries, tiny and metallic. 180-degrees and look back. Phe-
you’ll notice the river itself is just as nomenal view isn’t it? Turn off the
13. Vice Lounge – randy as ever. As you walk, look for Get back onto the Victoria Em-
W.T Stead memorial
iPod and relax. There’s pub called
Never Fall Away
the anchors on the walls, flying-fish bankment and carry on heading The Black Friar just the other side
14. Tim Hecker –
on the benches and carvings of the left. A little on from Cleopatra, plaque, commemorating the work of the bridge if you want some liq-
Sundown6093 river God Thameses - a bearded, you’ll find a hidden look-out post. of journalist and editor W.T. Stead. uid refreshment – that’s if that am-
Neptune´s lamp posts
cockney Neptune - on the lamp It’s directly under Waterloo bridge, You’re in the right place when you bulistic spritzer wasn’t enough.
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