A Bittersweet Love Letter to the [London] Suburbs
November 8, 2013 12:14 PM   Subscribe

 
They did bring us some of the best popular music since the war.
posted by GallonOfAlan at 12:28 PM on November 8, 2013


"Richmond might have the highest age of healthy living in the UK, but it also had one of its very few serial killers in recent years: Levi Bellfield"


Um nope, Bellfield lived and worked in the borough of Hillingdon, not Richmond. There's the borough of Hounslow in between the two. Richmond is the wealthiest borough in London (so probably wealthiest local council district in the UK), so there might have been a poignant contrast with Hillingdon if he was from there but he's not. 1 of the psycho's 4 (known) killings (and 1 of 2 other serious crimes) happened in Richmond.
posted by Bwithh at 12:31 PM on November 8, 2013


There's suburbs, and then there are suburbs. Everywhere referenced in this piece (Richmond, Ealing, Kingston, Putney Bridge, etc) is a reasonably cultured, affluent, connected to central London reasonably easily, and more or less homogenous majority vibe kind of place.

There are so many other kinds of suburbs, many of which are more directly related to the so-called metropolitan derision, or in many ways, likely to lead to feelings of dislocation, alienation, and the nagging sense that there must be somewhere else where shit is happening that yes, probably has given us most of the best rock and pop music.
posted by C.A.S. at 12:55 PM on November 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Nice, thoughtful piece. Like them or hate them I do suspect the vast suburbs of London have a character of their own.
posted by Segundus at 1:04 PM on November 8, 2013


The suburbs: full of straw men who can't afford to live in the city centre.
posted by cromagnon at 2:14 PM on November 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


*violently barfs ennui over a poundstretcher*
posted by lalochezia at 2:29 PM on November 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


Everywhere referenced in this piece (Richmond, Ealing, Kingston, Putney Bridge, etc) is a reasonably cultured, affluent, connected to central London reasonably easily, and more or less homogenous majority vibe kind of place.

Not quite everywhere, if you've ever had the pleasure of Mitcham.
posted by walrus at 4:02 PM on November 8, 2013


uh

what book is The Adventures of Tristram Shandy

does he mean The Life and Opinions of Tristram Shandy

if so, has he read it
posted by Rustic Etruscan at 6:42 PM on November 8, 2013 [1 favorite]


"The pleasure of Mitcham"

Hmmm... I believe I must have missed that.

And "stoic old dignity" is definitely not a phrase I would ever associate with Canary Wharf.
posted by 43rdAnd9th at 8:24 PM on November 8, 2013


These nitpickings aside I do think Clive Martin is growing into a very good writer. He reminds me of Gavin Hills who sadly died tragically young.
posted by treblekicker at 7:11 AM on November 9, 2013


I found parts of it a little snobbish and condescending if I'm honest, but it was ironically amusing that people from some perfectly lovely parts of London should be considered just wannabes who would really prefer to be living in say Westminster, with the highest crime rate in the city.
posted by walrus at 10:34 AM on November 9, 2013


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