Before this blog arrived Man on the Battersea bus was only a feature in the Battersea Society’s quarterly magazine Battersea Matters which began in 2007 when the new editor asked me to write a regular rant against the iniquities of modern life as experienced in Battersea. We toyed with various titles – ‘The Man Who Sees’, ‘A Look at Life’ etc. but (in homage to the Man on the Clapham Omnibus) selected the man on the bus version.
I also write a regular piece about bus journeys I have taken. You can find those here. But neither the short magazine feature or this blog usually have much to do with buses or indeed with Battersea – where we’ve now lived for over twenty years. As the subheading for the title above says whimsically: these are the ‘thoughts of a traveller in the bus lane of life’.
Whose life you may ask? Well, mine obviously, but I’m writing about anything that takes my interest today, or bears on something from my past: to pick just a few at random: digital photography, the art of making sandwiches, budgies, Leonard Cohen, the perils of ordering and drinking wine, brussels sprouts, penfriends, fish and chips, mosquitoes or death by aubergine. And that is just scratching the surface – that reference to mosquitoes was accidental – possibly.
Why should you want to read about me? No reason at all but you are reading this aren’t you? If you’re a member of the postwar ‘boomer’ generation you’ll recognise a lot of what I’m writing about. If you’re not then maybe my meanderings will help explain something about those of us who survived the fifties and sixties and are apparently the reason that you are now struggling to make ends meet, or buy a house, or take three holidays a year like we are popularly supposed to do.
Anyway that’s enough about me. If you would seek my monument just look around you. Christopher Wren said that. Now read on. I said that.