So, my cousin came up from Brighton to catch up, and we decided to take a little journey delving into the depths of central London, traversing the streets from Trafalger Square to Soho. It was jokes!
After discovering that he’d never ventured on top of those infamous lions, I decided that he was missing out on a big part of life and that had to be our first stop. For obvious reasons, I wasn’t really “on that”, but you guys know I only have to stand up on my wheelchair to immerse myself in the illusion of being on top of the world.
Don’t get it twisted though…it’s not really an illusion…I am on top of the world!
Talking of on top of the world, British Paralympians are big in the game! For most of the Beijing games our eyes have been diverted towards the furore surrounding the Chinese government’s appalling human rights records and suppression of Tibetans, but finally we have something positive to focus on. And to expand this to a wider sporting level, it’s interesting to consider that whilst our £100,000-per-week-paid footballers often struggle to defeat teams consisting of part-time bricklayers, cobblers and maths teachers, our proud Paralympic athletes are repping it in Beijing, merking out bare gold medals!
42 golds, are you serious? It’s a lot.
Back to the LDN, and we swiftly made movements in the direction of Carnaby Street, because we’re just cool like that.
I must say, being out and about really sparks the competitive streak in me, which I’m sure is clear from the third picture on the right. But once I had adopted the running position pon road, my cousin decided to delay the photo-taking until a car was driving towards me. I’m fearless though.
Although it is clear that the Paralympics is getting better and better in terms of quality of competition, stadiums and participation, the authorities, our own government (in view of 2012), and I hope the world, are keen for the latter to increase further still. But it seems that the signs of this happening are encouraging – as Ade Adepitan (the wheelchair basketballer with dreads from the BBC ads, what a legend) observed of the Beijing Games in a recent article for The Times, “A lot of families came with their disabled kids, who left wide-eyed, inspired and wanting to compete themselves.”
Hmmmm…maybe I should add “compete at 2012 Games” to my Things-To-Do list. It is quite long already, but still, it would be sick!
In my most rebellious action of the day, I decided to infiltrate the much-hyped BAPE clothing store, in their own words, “the only Bathing Ape store in the whole of Europe!”
Now let’s first establish the obvious, I had absolutely no intention of buying anything in that shop. The five pounds in my pocket would not of afforded a lace of a trainer, but the whole atmosphere of the shop just makes me laugh, and not in a funny way, this is the ugliest face of capitalism.
But to be honest, those hoodies that zip up all the way over your face are saying a lot, so I had to try one on. Unfortunately, I think it may have been a too little obvious that I’m not the kind of power-purchaser that BAPE are looking for, and we were a designer whisker away from being physically kicked out of the shop.