Saturday, October 29, 2005

corridor of uncertainty

Off to the Manchester Museum for an afternoon of Palestinian Culture - haven't been in the museum for years and years. It looks about ten million times better than the last time I was there - although I have a soft spot for the type of museum that consists of chloroformed specimens of things that frighten the mother country... they're just so rare these days.

It was a fascinating afternoon and I hope that good things will result... It was also a good chance to check up on the mass demolition and reconstruction work going on at the University. The old maths tower is being unbuilt - and it's fascinating.

The big joke was always that it had been built the wrong way around - which is not true apparently, but I cannot remember the real story as I was very, very drunk when told all the details some months ago...

Still, it all makes for an exciting life. I spent about £500 on a new bike today. Well, I ordered it, so didn't spend the money exactly, but feel as guilty as if I had. It is very sharp and fizzy and exciting - and I am sure I deserve it, though there is the nagging doubt that I should have made do with a skateboard and a packet of chewing gum and given the change to the deserving poor. It must be the Victorian in me. (I bought it from one of the best bike shops in the world - it once put an advert in the local press during Gay Pride advertising itself with the slogan - 'bikes and gears, for dikes and queers'. Class)

On the way back through town, I noticed that the new, monolithic part of the Arndale opposite the Corn Exchange has finally opened. Hurrah. A branch of Next the size of Rochdale. We so need that here.

Then a drink at the King's Arms - the new City Life pub of the year. I've been going for a few years now and it is a great pub. Before its most recent incarnation as a centre of good beer and drama, it used to be run by a fabulous couple who had been in charge of the Salutation in its glory days ('That Mick Hucknall used to sing upstairs on a Saturday. What a little twat he was...')

One day we went in (with low expectations as there was only ever one lager and one bitter on draft and two bottles of dusty martini behind the counter) to find that the menu board read: 'Todays special: crisis of pork in pastry leggings'.

I could barely breathe for the next two days.


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