The 10 signs that you’ve become a Londoner
Remember when you moved to London? It seemed so exciting. A real 24 hour city, alive with possibilities. You gazed in wonder at the majestic buildings of the West End rising high in the air — like your hopes and dreams — reaching to heaven.
Well, what happened? I’ll tell you what happened. You became busy. Worse — you became a Londoner.
If you recognise yourself in any of the following, you need a week away in the country. And no, I don’t mean Hampstead Heath. I mean the real country. Yeah, somewhere they don’t have a tube. Scary, huh?
1. You no longer look up
Well obviously when I moved here I did a little sightseeing, but nowadays, I don’t have time to stroll around looking at pretty buildings. I have to get to work! I’m busy — and important! What are all these tourists looking at anyway? Move!
2. Waiting more than three minutes for a tube is absolutely preposterous
WHAT? FOUR minutes? But I have a meeting to get to! Why the hell do I pay all this money for a season ticket if I’m forced to break my stride and stand still for that long? I’m very busy and extremely important! And I’ve had five Starbucks today for chrissakes! I need to walk it off! Sack Boris Johnson!
3. Everyone walks too damn slow
God, get out of my frigging way! Really, I’m writing to City Hall to propose they introduce fast and slow lanes on all pavements. Everywhere. Even in my cul-de-sac. I’m far too busy and important to be held up by leisurely walkers. You’re obviously unemployed. Or a tourist.
4. The Underground is a battleground
Dear foolish day-trippers who stand in all the exits to study the maps: don’t you know you’re going to end up deaf from our crescendo of passive-aggressive tutting as we walk past? Seriously, it’ll be off the Richter scale in a minute if you don’t move.
Actually, while we’re on the subject, I swear I’m going to batter the next fucktard who waits till they get to the fucking barrier before they look for their Oyster Card!
And yes. Please do stop dead after you’ve gone through while you decide where to go next — you know how it thrills me to be on the bottom of a seven-person pile up behind you.
And of course I don’t mind you dragging that wheelie case behind you as you meander from side to side, blissfully unaware of the amount of space you’re taking up.
But please, just stand on the right of the escalator, you moron! I have to get past, and by golly I’ll push if I have to! Did you not hear me before? I’m busy! And important! Gah!
5. You think anywhere outside Zone 2 is too far to travel
Crystal Palace? Where’s that? Is that in Zone two? Zone three, you say? Oh, gosh no. I’m far too busy to travel all that way! I mean it’s miles! Can I even get a signal on my BlackBerry in Crystal Palace? I’m snowed you know. I have calls to take!
6. It surprises you to meet people who have English as a first language
You mean you were actually born here? How weird! I thought you’d be from Poland. Or Brazil. Anyway, got to cut this short I’m afraid. So busy
7. Purple hair and ballet tutus are acceptable attire
Well, of course not for me, but I no longer blink in surprise when they float past me in Sainsbury’s. Although I have been itching to try something more daring…
In fact, when I get my next haircut, unless it’s going in four different directions and I can’t see out from under my fringe, I’m not paying for it. OK?
Skinny jeans and dirty, ripped T shirts? I should jolly well hope so! Let’s all fuck off to Shoreditch and practice looking bored.
8. You feel superior to non Londoners
How much for three pints of beer? Seven pounds, you say? Oh, that’s hilarious! In London, seven quid wouldn’t even buy you one! Oh, I want to move here! But on my London salary. Haw haw.
Look! You even have self-service checkouts! How quaint! Yeah, we had those in London ages ago. They’re really great for me when I have to fly in and out because I’m sooo busy. And really, hideously important.
What was that? You coughed, but I could have sworn you just called me a twat…?
9. Fresh air smells funny
Oh, my God, that’s so weird. I just blew my nose and my snot wasn’t black! Mind if I stand in your garage with the car engine running for a bit? My nostrils are burning from all this excess oxygen and I feel rather sick.
10. You find the sound of sirens comforting
Silence is unnerving, and anyway, at least it means the police are doing their job. Sort of. What was that bang? Not a gunshot, surely. Must have been a car backfiring. I’ll know tomorrow anyway because I won’t be able to move for police tape. Although it had better not make me late for work. I’m stacked at the moment.
So how many did you get? Is it time to book that train ticket? Or maybe you’ve thought of a few I haven’t? If you have, leave them in the comments section, I’d love to hear them.
Till next time…