Tube Striking Muffins


At some point, I’ll forget to check the meaning of these blog headings with urban dictionary and find they’ve gone viral for all the wrong reasons. This is more likely than it sounds; I once typeset chapters of a sex guide in the middle of the client’s London office and had trouble avoiding looking surprised.

Who would have thought you did that?

Yes, today’s coffee-and-muffin blog is about the #tubestrike. I remember working the food section in a well-known supermarket on Christmas Eve. Most customers were white-faced because the luxury mince pies had run out. I was white-faced with concerns about surviving Christmas, let alone earn enough to get through January. What I’m trying to say is that my sympathies are probably with the strikers, it means more to them than my inconvenience.

But more than that, any disruption in a city the size of London, on a transport system like the Tube, is like a glimmer, waving in the corner of your eye, of a dystopian future. It’s all it takes, to realise how quickly a city is just a place you can’t get around in. So you walk, and now you own the city. I once got in to work by riverboat, Putney to Westminster. The journey, smelling of water and air, the sights of London passing at a fast walking pace, the one-and-a-half hours off-line, made that the best trip into work ever.

I was working at the Dept of Transport at the time. Go ahead and laugh, the irony was not lost on anyone.

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