I'll post about WOW in a bit, but first: I've posted a few things lately that were really for my NZ friends' benefit. This post will pretty much only make sense to you if you're from the UK, or at least hella-familiar with the geography.
I had an hour or so to kill before WOW yesterday, so I went into the pub next door to the TSB Arena, sat myself down with a handle of Mac's, and got out my knitting. This guy comes and sits down at my table.
Guy: You shouldn't be doing that in a pub!
Me: Doing what?
Me: I do it every week. My knitting group meets in a pub. (in my mind: pfffft! :P)
Now, to my dismay, he continues the conversation, interspersed while I talk back (I didn't want to be rude) with such gems as
Guy: "How are you doing that without looking?"
And, on discovering I was making gloves:
"You should wear that on your head when you go into the show."
(Me:Image pops into head
Anyway, eventually the conversation turns to places in the UK that he knows, because that's usually one of the things Kiwis talk about with people from the UK, after some chat about accents and how he can't hear them but English people can, yada yada yada.
He starts telling me about this guy he knew in the UK, who was a member of the National Front.
Guy: He used to go around Bristol with a group of mates and beat up curries...you know, darkies.
Me (thinks) Wow, that's some lovely intolerance right there. Great vocabulary, really. Why can't I run into people I KNOW at a time like this? Oh, right, because none of them would normally be caught dead in this pub...
At this point, I am somewhat taken aback by the idea of Bristol as a hotbed of racial violence. But curiosity gets the better of me.
Me (says): Bristol?
Guy: Yeah, what's Bristol like? Where is it?
Me: Well, it's down in the West Country and, well, a comedian once said that in London, you get off the train and here these really alarmed announcements about unattended bags, but in Bristol, no lie, the only announcement was "oi, mind the pigeons".
Guy: So do they have a lot of soccer violence?
Me: No, Bristol isn't really known for any violence.
Guy: Well this guy, he used to go round Bristol in a gang of about 40 or 50 guys and just attack Indians, he said.
Me: (thinks) Yup, still loving where this conversation has gone, I DON'T think.
Me: (says): Really?
Guy: Yeah, going round Bristol...no, wait. BRIXTON. That was it.
Me: (sighs and wonders how long before my MIL shows up
While I was wondering how to extricate myself politely, a woman came up and told me how it was lovely to see a young woman knitting, and her old gran and her friends used to take THEIR knitting bags everywhere, that's how you get things finished. She knits, too, on the train.
I may have felt the teensiest bit of triumph at the guy's expression.
Note to self- when knitting solo, next time do it in Espressoholic. The hipsters don't bother you when you're crafting. Also they have cake.