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Empty Streets

August 10, 2011

Coincidence: looters would never target a cobbled street.

Reviews of Tings was recently in Edinburgh for the start of the Fringe festivities, which, some amongst you will know, means an overbearing crush of tourists that fill every sidewalk and smother bagpipers to the point of near-suffocation. But RoT thrived in this environment, weaving between snapping Oriental folks and squeezing around oozing, loud Americans. For RoT has experience of London streets, meaning it can skip around a city as would a shadow. On Monday, from north of the border RoT sat, horrified, watching as this city burned*. After taking an approprite amount of time to digest RoT returned to London, arriving into a deserted Paddington. There was an air of mild terror, like a 12a film might contain, so RoT eschewed the bus in favour of a town car. The driver explained, even though RoT would usually discourage, aggresively, any driver from direct communication, that the roads had been clear all evening, the majority of 8million people locking themselves away from the actions of an ignorant, asinine few. These empty streets were poignantly stained by the actions that led to them, straining under the burden of their significance. But empty streets are always eerie; ghostly orange lights and everyday litter the modern equivalent of a foggy Victorian back alley.  Every streetlight, Elaine Paige once sang, her voice cracking with emotion, seems to beat a fatalistic warning. Once more Cats  proves apt commentator on this fractured, troubling society.

Verdict: even the Sainsbury’s was closed, so Generic Daily Mail Wife couldn’t get any red onion for her last-minute bruschetta. Nothing good can come of empty streets.

**

*Though genuinely horrified, this scenario did actually also involve a fine dining experience and a delicious Pinot Noir.

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