Stuttering

There is no shortness breath
Say some words take heft
I look out for patience
As my thoughts are stuck in the station

My mind needs to be active
My mouth is protracted
There is intellectual theft
Even if I am not bereft

The chief culprit is me
I feel like an amputee
My knowledge dispossessed
As though I’m not even the best of the rest

Though I have no reason to want this
My ideas are just disappearing into the abyss
I know I’m lucky to have my thoughts
I just wished the ones I shared weren’t so short

This is my constant battle
While I take on the world this still causes me to rattle
I wish it was confidence
but I don’t have that evidence

The 2019 General Election

My Election Round Up

The last five weeks have been a blur. I quit my job and dived head first into Luciana Berger campaign. In my last post wrote that I hadn’t been happier in ages and the truth is that I have been elated for the last few weeks.  I know why, even though there was no fairy-tale ending to this campaign, I started to chase my dreams again.

I started to chase my dreams again

I learnt quite a few things about myself over the course of the last couple of weeks, that I seemed to have forgotten. The main thing is that I really cannot be motivated by money. It won’t ever motivate me because it’s just a means to end for myself. It doesn’t achieve what I want, being rich is nothing for me. I couldn’t care less. Not to say that money is unimportant, but I can’t imagine a boss offering me a bonus or wage increase that will motivate me to do more work. The second thing I have realised over the last few weeks and more honestly over the last few months is that I enjoy some form of leadership. Whether it be helping organise some leafleting rounds or, what I spent most of the campaign doing, leading canvassing sessions; the sense of responsibility and making sure that we were completing our goals as a team were more important than my personal stats (in the Liberal Democrats, you can review your stats on canvassing. Thus, we sometimes had some friendly competition who could knock on the most doors and convince people that they should vote for Luciana). I would say that when leading canvasing groups, it did feel as though I was a trying to herd cats at times. Especially when people had the audacity to be independent and not tell anyone about it! The final part of it all, is how much I miss politics in all it’s aspects. I love it, no doubt about it. I honestly could work in the field for the rest of my life and really be happy. I reminded me why I want to get a PhD in Political Science, why politics is important to the individual and why it’s important to stay true to myself.

What should have never existed [a Liberal Democratic chance] in Finchley & Golders Green became a reality with Luciana

I spent every day canvassing and I met so many incredible people through out the process, with small list of shout outs to Jake, Kobi, Ilana, Dora, James, Mark, Oli, Zach and so so many more people that I haven’t mentioned here, because otherwise the list would be seemly endless on a team that didn’t even exist two months ago. What should have never existed [a Liberal Democratic chance] in Finchley & Golders Green became a reality with Luciana. For the first time ever in a general election I was able to vote for someone that I liked and wanted to represent me. I must admit, putting a cross in a box with that feeling was nice for the second time in my life (I’ll get to the first time). Speaking of incredible people; I met several Lords, MEPs, former MPs, a couple of celebs, other parliamentary candidates, mayoral candidates, London Assembly candidates (and Member Caroline Pidgeon) and got spend so much time chatting to them over the days and evenings which has restored my faith in politicians. This is not just on the Lib Dems side, when speaking to other parties at the count (plus when I bumped into them out and about) that there are good people out there trying to make the country a better place. We might all disagree with what is best and how to get there, but I do not believe that there is an innate evil with others, even if the twitterverse would disagree. The reality speaking to people on the door steps was clear (this is for Finchley & Golders Green): people wanted the country to move on, people did not like Corbyn and some people are utter idiots who need to learn how to think. The last point may seem elitist and it is to a degree, but the most frustrating thing that I found were people who didn’t believe facts, in seat polling or did not want to engage with the records of the candidates; instead focusing on rhetoric. On all sides, including the Europhiles on mine. If people aren’t open to a different opinion or factual evidence, then it’s impossible to change one’s own behaviour. I think people should be ashamed of this attitude because it’s not just politics, but every decision that you make in life that is affected by this narrow thinking. It’s why I look back at my own education and while I studied a wide range of subjects, I look back at only really two that had significant impacts on the way I think, not what I know and understand or analyse. Critical Thinking at school and Analytical Philosophy during my Undergraduate. I don’t think this is the time or the place to go into why this is the case for myself, but feel free to ask me why in a message and I’ll get back to you, but I don’t believe that I would be in this position without my education in these subjects and that does mean that I am in a privileged position. I just don’t think it has to be a unique experience and that openness can be picked up at any point.

If people aren’t open to a different opinion or factual evidence, then it’s impossible to change one’s own behaviour. I think people should be ashamed of this attitude…

I feel that I should answer why I think that the results turned out the way it did.

Simply, the UK (well particularly England) has never been a left-wing country. It’s does not view itself as European, but still a global nation (whether this is true, is a different matter). Look at the local elections following the referendum: Conservatives votes went up, Labour down, Lib Dem share of the votes went up, but number of councillors went down. There have been some differences in the Scotland but look at UKIPs demise. Almost all their votes went to the Tories. In this election, the Brexit Parties disappearance in Tory held seats is similar. There was no split. So, it became almost impossible to split the Leave vote, but also meant that they spent less time being relevant for the majority of the public. That’s why Conservatives held many of their seats. The gains in the Labour heartlands? It’s tribalism. It’s part of the reason why people close their minds. They pick a team and it’s no longer just a team. It’s them. Their identity. Telling someone that their team is dumb, racist, lying, don’t care or what ever else: is saying that they are all of the above. Even if that has nothing to do with your intention. The left and even more sadly, the centre, can no longer say stories. I know that this doesn’t seem obvious solution to identity politics and tribalism, but it’s not the facts that people who wanted to stay in the European Union, the objective truth or the civility that will win over people. It’s a vision. That’s why Leave won, it’s why Scottish Independence nearly won (once Cameron decided to ditch stories for facts) and it’s why I think the Conservatives won this time (by just selling the same story from 2016). Yes, there were issues with the media, but there are enough sources of news to see lies and biases. It’s about being able to tell

Let me introduce to a not so hidden secret, my perceptions had changed. I used to support the England rugby team. I was a die-hard English nationalist.  I would sing the national anthem in front of the TV, watch the Queen speeches, berate Wales, run around pretending to be Beckham taking free-kicks against Greece, side step like Robinson with a ball in hand, scream for the British & Irish Lions. I wasn’t even ten and didn’t call myself British. I was English. Now? I’m British, I scream for the Boks, side step like JP Peterson with a ball in hand, take free kicks like Bale, berate Wales, I don’t watch/listen/read any Queen speeches & I cried when I saw Siya lift the trophy. What happened and what does this have to do with the elections (or politics)? I was young, open and more importantly new stories were introduced to me. The story of the South African rugby team final made sense, the importance Parliament instead of the Queen, how pointless Wales is as a country, heroes can change over time (I still love the England football team), I missed the Sharks players who I modelled a style that I could actually use on the pitch, I learnt more about my own history and how places like Jamaica where part of the Union for a longer time than the current house of the monarchy. I was told stories, ideas and allowed myself to be open to new ideas.

Storytelling

the scariest thing in my life is not death, but my mother with a velan (thin rolling pin)

Back to politics and storytelling. Scolding, as many modern parenting guides say, are not efficient. I say this as a child who used to be hit with every utensil in the kitchen. It just means that the scariest thing in my life is not death, but my mother with a velan (thin rolling pin). Something that is common in all the world cultures going back thousands of years are stories and the oral traditions. Now we don’t need stories to tell the other side to put on their hats before going out in the winter, rather we need a vision that people believe in. Before anyone tells me about the Labour manifesto being full of ideas and dreams. You’ve missed the point. It has never been about what you’ve been selling but how you’re selling it. Otherwise there wouldn’t a schmuck on this earth. But there are, because charlatans are good story tellers. We like stories as they can be fun, add some drama to hook us and with this new context we can analyse our positions without attacking our identity. It’s not a quick process. I didn’t start one evening and then changed by the next morning. It’s starts with being open, luckily, we’re all open to stories. In my mind, if you want to change the world, become a good story teller.

Now that I’ve solved politics and thus humanity, let me leave you with the first time that I ticked a box that I believed in: Leave. I am a Eurosceptic, leaning towards anti-European. The English nationalist is still apart of my identity, though I view myself more of a Londoner which is an international city because of our ties to Europe. I don’t care about the economic cost of Brexit. I want out of an institution that isn’t evil and full of bad people. Quite frankly, I don’t buy the European dream. Not for my beloved England. I don’t want to pool sovereignty or help French farmers. So, why did I campaign for Luciana Berger, the United to Remain candidate, the People’s Choice candidate, the Liberal Democrat candidate; given that this is the opposite view? Objectively, she was the best candidate for the job on the ballot paper. The Liberal Democrat manifesto is one I could support and there are many ideas that I wish to be implanted: mainly the penny tax. For Luciana I could put away my differences, tell people that a second referendum is a good idea (which it is, even if I would still vote leave), how revoke would be democratic is the Liberal Democrats got into power (which is would have been, as it is democratic for the Conservatives to pretend that they have the faintest idea of what they are doing) and argued for staying in the EU, because there are good reasons to be in the EU. At the end of the day, it’s just about being able to tell a story.

That was a bit more of a wall than I was expecting, but I feel indebted to this campaign that I gave everything up for: I was able to find myself again. A kid with a dream to chase.

I was able to find myself again. A kid with a dream to chase.

Next time we speak, I want to hear about your DREAMS!

When you find yourself a Richard Osho, hold on to them as tight as you can, because there is no greater feeling when you find someone who loves you for nothing other than yourself.

Here’s some context. Rich and I were catching up over the phone and then Rich decided that he wanted to give me a pep talk and question everything I was doing in life. Here is the summary of the call that I wrote down the next day and read to myself each morning, even though it has nothing on the call it makes me want to go out and be the best me. Without further ado:

This city is filled with normal people. It slowly makes you comfortable with your life. As though you’ve made something, when you’ve made nothing. You need find your arrogance. I remember walking into history as the only black kid, bit scared if I was in the right place. There you were arguing from day 1 that you were right. Ready to teach and that Mr Hughes or whoever taught us history [it was Mr Owens Rich]. The only other person of colour and you act as though you were the most superior person in the room. WHERE IS THAT HANIK?!?! Where is that arrogant 16 year old? When we were at leavers you told my Dad you didn’t want to work for someone, run a family business. No. Straight up you said that you wanted to be Prime Minister. Next time we speak, I want to hear about your DREAMS! Not some girl, not your family, not work; I want to hear from the selfish git and how he’s going to take on the world. Life is short and these are our golden years; time to be the leader that New Hall enabled us to be. End of the day, no one can fulfill you, apart from you. Go get your dreams. Don’t try to be normal, because we all know you’re different.

Following this chat, I didn’t last two more days at my job. I quit and am now campaigning for the Liberal Democrats in Finchley & Golders Green. Let me tell you something. I haven’t been happier in ages. It’s all due to my brother Richard. I love you bro.

Plunge

The steps are steep, There’s mean feat. They’re easy to climb, as your body doesn’t seem to mind. At the top we see all this potential. Sometimes we’re concerned about the credentials. We all hesitate. Not to make a mistake. It’s our fear, that puts us in gear. Makes us stall, Just before the fall. An innocent hello. Can turn into the most destructive hell hole Or send us into a field of bliss. Where all we do is kiss.

The Last Sun

A short story that I wrote at work last week during my lunch

The sun crept over the horizon. The sea glistening. The water just a sparkling golden sheen, The waves roll in and crash into the rocks, as though they are completing an act of violent vengeance. The sound only disturbed by the chirping birds. It was this sight that man decided to plummet to his death: in paradise.

My Love of Rugby

The rugby world cup is on and apart from the glorious memes that have been brought by the chaos of the French team, the typhoon and the of course the various online communities that I am participate in have all reminded me why I love this game.

Now I always claim that cricket is my second religion, but rugby without a doubt is my #1 sport. It’s the sport that I spent a decade going to every match in Durban to see my [Natal] Sharks constantly lose by narrow margins, saw the magnificent Jonah Lomu and an opportunity to see every international team. I can still remember the daring runs of Henry Honiball as he caught the ball on our 10m line from a clearance and dart across the field, zig-zagging through the field about to score only to be tackled last minute. Or seeing Ollie la Roux give a massive heave to the scrum as we [the Sharks] were looking to set up the attack on the blindside. Or how about Jonah sprinting down the opposite by-line and just being in utter awe of this man and how feeble everyone else seemed to the manner he played.

I got to meet so many players, as the Sharks back then, had many players with family involved with farming. Thus, with my Dad having an agri-brokerage, many of them would come to the office to learn or become a client. There isn’t a player from 1997-2005 that I haven’t met that played for the Sharks. I was able to meet my heroes all the time.

…cricket is my second religion, but rugby without a doubt is my #1 sport

What was odd, is that I never played rugby for my school in South Africa, but at home I was either playing cricket or had a rugby ball recreating the moments for the game. Football was there, but it has never been my passion sport. I love Tottenham, but I would rather see the Sharks lift the Super Rugby than watch Spurs win the Champions League, even if I know more about Tottenham right now than the Sharks. It’s true.

Recently I’ve been chatting to non-rugby fans about the sport and I know that I still smile when I’m explaining the sport to them or what’s going on in the world cup. Seriously everyone should watch the Quarter-Finals this weekend, especially with Japan vs South Africa which South Africa, is no doubt the bad guys. Either they knock-out the incredible hosts who have class beyond class or become the team that lost to Japan twice in a row at the World Cup. Japan have been playing some of the classiest rugby this tournament and where

There’s Wales vs France, with Wales being France’s Australia and the French team, being…well French. This is a good point to point out that my favourite player of all time is Thierry Dusautoir, the former French captain. I never saw play in the flesh unfortunately, but anytime I saw that the French team was playing, I made sure that I could at least watch the extended highlights. I model my modest school playing career on him and Richie McCaw. Dusautoir is the embodiment of rugby in mind. He went to university and got a degree as a chemical engineer. He was incredibly polite on and off the pitch. He was a tackle monster for Les Blues racking up record 38 tackles (and he scored France’s try) in the 2011 final against New Zealand, where I still think Craig Joubert was affected by the home crowd and not calling some of the blatant off-sides by the All-Blacks. He still had the grace on pitch to just get on with the game and show the entire world what rugby is about. Playing hard, with respect for the opposition and the referee. His performance in that game probably sealed world player of the year, even if other players won more trophies that year, no one has got close to replicating a performance of the pitch that Dusautoir displayed that night. Thinking about the few times that I have “fan-girled” have involved Christine Amanpour, meeting God (aka Sachin Tendulkar) & the rest of the Indian team and whenever I get to meet a Springbok. However, I have no clue what will happen if I ever see Dusautoir in the flesh. I only imagine is that I lose the ability to speak.

Alright enough about the great man, let’s continue with the France Wales game. Wales should win, but honestly is the French team can play like Freddie Michalak (Michalak is one of my favourite players, also French, as he played for the Sharks and embodies French rugby to a tee! He was decent player, not bad but acceptable at this level of rugby. However, for around 10 minutes a game he was world class. His footwork, kicking, ability to spot a pass was second to none. He was France. Suddenly, for no apparent reason, he would return to normal as though he had shown the world what he could do and that was it. And yes, that is a very biased look back on him, but I don’t care. He helped us win the Currie Cup. Ummm back to the French team) does for 10 minutes a game for say more than 30 minutes, they could cause an upset; even if the captain doesn’t know he is the captain (yes, that’s not a joke. It happened)

I have no clue what will happen if I ever see Dusautoir in the flesh. I only imagine is that I lose the ability to speak.

England are playing Australia which should be a comfortable win for the English in my opinion. Any chance of Australia winning relies on the magic of Beale and their captain Michael Hooper playing the perfect game in the breakdown. While they can do so, they will face an England squad who could go on and win the tournament, if they don’t play the All-Blacks in the semi-final (I can’t see Eddie Jones going past the Kiwi’s). Why? The England team can and would take the game to the All-Blacks, even if they didn’t have Eddie Jones as the coach. However, even though Owen Farrell is the one of the many star players of the England squad, it’s his temperament and ability to manage the game that will determine how far England go in the tournament.

Honestly, I could go on and on. Even if I don’t have a broad knowledge of the sport now. However, if you stuck on Uruguayan second division amateur rugby in front of, I’ll probably watch the entire game. I don’t care how skilful the game is or how big the tackles are. I love the sport.

Grasping Air

I’ve always been a dreamer
You would describe me as ridiculous
And I would scoff at your tone as preposterous
All the fun and games, nothing wrong with our demeanour

The world is your oyster
That is what I was told
More a tale for the old
As far as I can tell, there’s not even a pot to stir

I guess it’s time to set up shop
Time to get dirty and a little bit flirty
Plenty of life yet, I’m not even thirty
There’s no reason for my dreams to be cropped.  

My name may not touch the sky
That’s not a reason to fret
Even if I have a few regrets
There’s always going to be me, myself and I

Returning Home

My day at New Hall

 After being made redundant and spending so many years in the UK and to be honest, a bit lost, I decided to call my school and see if there was an opportunity to go work there and if not, could I just visit it. Turns out there was a role available, but they were also willing to have a look at my CV and see if they could connect me to some jobs closer in to London.

Now my old school is trying to establish it’s “Boys Network” only after 375 years after its foundation; but, the network of Old Fish (I refuse to use the other name, it’s so wannabe-esque) is very loose.

…love, love of God and our neighbour

The Saint Augustine Rule

Now it’s no secret why I chose to go to New Hall. I decided that this was my school, because of the Avenue. The Avenue is the historic driveway to the school which has trees either side of it. Why does my school have this amazing road? It’s only a former palace for King Henry VIII. So, as I drove into the school, I noticed that no one was behind and decided to jump out of the car, engine still running and grab a picture. Why? Mate, I LOVE that drive. I always smile when I remember Nuno sliding on the ice and falling over with Antoine & Harry losing their minds laughing as we made a dash to Sainsbury’s in the snow. Or taking a walk in autumn when leaves change colour. Or in the Spring walking and smelling the flowers while avoiding revision for exams. Or in the summer, when Alex and I grabbed some cider and had a walk down the drive just chatting about life and what was to come when our exam results rolled in.

Before I notice that there is no one is behind me
After I realised that I could get out of the car and get a better photo

Now the school has a special place in my heart for another reason. It was my home for the longest period of time in the UK (if we exclude my Ba’s address). It’s were I met my best friends, had some of my best memories and did a whole lot stupid shit (most which I dare not repeat online).

It was weird entering the school and needing to wait for Dom Walmsley, a kid a couple of years below me in the boarding house, as I needed a guide to show me around because I don’t have a background check. It was odd, because a few things had been moved around the Ambilake Room (sp definitely needs to be checked, but that’s how it’s sounds spelt out. Fun fact, the room prior to be reception was used to walk around in the winter for exercise). The Griffin/Dragon (an ongoing debate, though I’m on team dragon at the moment. It makes more sense because of Henry VIII’s Coat of Arms) has been moved indoors.

Just grew up in the palace

I saw Dom, so instantly I told him to put his hands away and gave him a hug. You see, growing up in Campion meant even if you weren’t great friends or even friends at all, there is a strong sense of trust between all of us. There aren’t many people I wouldn’t want to see again or catch up with, I grew up with them. Everyone is like a relative.

So we started off with a quick chat about the role, spent most of the time looking at my CV, plus Dom had scoured the Almuni network and found some people for me to get in touch with. With the formalities over and done with, we moved onto the more exciting part. Lunch! Now, my school had a decent lunch when I went there, it got boring after a while; there was enough choice to be satisfied.

A tour! (even if I pretty much know the school inside-out: tends to happen after living there for four years).

The Tour

I found out that the willow tree I planted has been moved, instead they have planted more trees in the area and there’s now a farm. A fucking farm. I went to a posh school, a privilege that I am thankful to my parents for, but the concept of a farm is what I would call peak New Hall. I mean, it’s a farm. There are chickens, geese, ducks, peacocks, goats, sheep and pigs! In the Campion House I grew up in, I willing to bet any money someone would have been attacked by a goose.

The pigs!

We then wondered around the back of the pitches where I will never forget some of the most gruesome training I had to deal with Mr Briggs or playing matches in the fog/rain/sleet. The standout one, was doing three laps of the pitches with a partner carrying a 15kg bag at the end of training. Not the worst, until Mr Briggs saw Kelvin walking and ordered all of us to continue running and complete an extra lap!

Pass the Sixth Former’s café (I know, a café!), we went into the Sixth Form centre where I got to catch up with Mr Alderson and Mrs Innes; whom upon meeting me asked me the most important question: who am I dating and if not, why not? You see Mrs Innes, knows me and the rest of the family far too well sometimes. However, the reason I still have affinity to the school is due to connections like this across the school. We discussed other things as well, but that’s for us to know and you to speculate (honestly, nothing to interesting, just a regular catch up).

We then headed to Radcliffe to see if Mrs McGlynn was around, she wasn’t but Mr Crosby was around! Mr Crosby is my old Year 11 tutor, who I will say my class constantly harass. I mean we were teenage boys who had a bit too much fun! In Year 10, we hid Mr Parkinson’s laptop! We weren’t exactly the best set of behaving children. Mr Crosby had a meeting to attend, thus I agreed to come back and give a speech at registration to his current class.

The goats are dicks apparently

We then had a walk towards the Chapel where we bumped into Dr Thomas, my old physics & astronomy teacher, then into the new historical/heritage room. There is still no Chaplaincy board… I digress, but that is where I bumped into Mrs McGlynn and we had a lovely little chat before she returned to the Year 7’s who were going to get an etiquette lesson (I actually still remember getting some etiquette lessons, something I use when I need to look posh). We then headed into the archives, which while not fully open, was one of the few areas of the school I had never been to, might be worth going back if I can full access.

That’s me, hopefully not the only time I walk down the aisle with a girl!

We then headed back to see Mr Crosby’s class and gave them an impromptu speech about my time at school and all the dumb things I did, what the reality of the future may be and remember to have some fun; the opportunities to muck about and make mistakes will be easier to fix now than several years down the line. Also told them to listen to Mr Crosby, but prior to him coming into the room, I told the class all the pranks we pulled! Sorry Mr Crosby?

We then headed to catch Mr Bickersteth and ended up bumping into Mr Sidwell, my old housemaster. We had a little catch up before needing to part ways as Mr Sidwell had a meeting to attend.

Dom took me to the astro where the Campion legends of Thursday night football were made. Unfortunately, there were no opportunities to recreate some old memories. We then headed to the nursery which is a brand new part of the school, but not much to see to be honest.

The pitch of legends

Finally, we went to the Nun’s graveyard, because it’s one of the best little hideouts in the school. It’s important to remember that we are indebt to those who came before us and that simple message of the St. Augustine which is the basis of the school ethos: “…love, love of God and our neighbour”.

After a quick prayer, we headed back and had a chat and said my goodbyes to Dom. On the way out I got a bit emotional, as the school has provided me with so much to be grateful. Did I have the best start in life? It’s hard to know, but I’m sure it’s pretty damn close to being it.

The old cedar tree by the walled garden

Fobalicious

Now don’t ask me what brought me to do this, but I decided to share one of my online dating profiles with reddit. Then I decided to talk about it on the podcast and now I’m writing about it.

Now let me say, that some of the people were harsh as fuck. Held nothing back and others were a bit more supportive. The vast majority said nothing at all (if all 400+ views are unique), but that’s cool. Most people online are just lurkers.

don’t ask me what brought me to do this

Something I say far too often

While all the comments were, in the end of the day, fine. One thing that stood out to me was being called Fobby or told that I look like a Fob. Which, if anyone grew up with me, would find hilarious. Especially how patriotic I was as a child to my beloved England and British heritage.

However, I don’t mind being called a FOB. What concerned me was the negative connotations with the term. No one says it with a positive attitude. It’s a put down. It’s an intra-ethnic division. It’s not just that there’s a difference in culture, but that one is more superior. Now, if you say: No, Hanik that’s not what I mean when I refer to someone as FOB, rather I mean it’s someone who is from the motherland. Then why not say that? FOB isn’t a reclaimed term and you may say that you are trying to reclaim it. However, unless you are Fresh Off the Boat; it’s not your responsibility or right to claim. Heck it’s not even my right to claim, after being called one.

How do you respond to being called a FOB? I would, in real life, tell the other person to stop being a wanker. I might also just shrug it off and not let the person get to me, honestly, I’m too sure how I would react. Just being weirded out by the term.

Otherwise, look for some changes coming to the blog. As you may be aware, I’m on a podcast and I’ve decided to make a page for the blog; beyond social media. It will just explain the basis of Chai Noon and a quick bio of Kiran and maybe a photo if he adds one.

Latest episode where we talk about dating:

Scared by rice is an understatement

Aditi Mittal and going home

This week has been über busy, but let’s be honest, it’s always busy. Been going out every night, but the highlight this week was seeing Aditi Mittal.

Now, if you don’t know who she is, then all you need to know is that she is hilarious! Quite useful, given that she is a comedians. Forget laugh out loud, she is tears rolling down your face laughter.

I went with Carl, who I hadn’t seen for a few months, we didn’t even know what to expect from the show, but I do prefer watching comedy completely blind.

Forget laugh out loud, she is tears rolling down your face laughter

Haven’t had such a good laugh in ages!

I had grabbed front row seats, because why the hell not. If you go to a show, and the comedian decides to pick on someone, it’s more memorable if it’s you (or your friend).

Turns out that Aditi gets nervous before the show, so she came out and sat down and had a quick chat with us, which was lovely. That’s part of the reason I love being in the front row, especially at Soho Theatre, I’ve always had (or what feels like) a personal experience with the comedian. Apart from Hasan Minhaj. Bastard.

Back to Aditi, her show is all about the classical African/Asian problem. Seeking validation from the boss of the house. In her case, it’s her Mother. Aditi took us on a whirl wind tour of her life in Mumbai as a comedian and modern feminism in India. We go through the caricature of her father and why it’s all about her mother, who is also caricatured, can garner gravitas no matter what is going on. While some jokes may have missed the non-Indian audience, Carl was still laughing allowed throughout the show, so no problems there.

Ultimately, I got a night of laughter, catching up with an old friend and story that reminds us all the love within family. So go watch her Netflix special (that’s what she wanted plugged).

Home

Speaking of family, I returned home for the first time in years. I went back to Tottenham and visited the new Stadium. They call it The Tottenham Hotspur stadium, but I’ll only refer to it as the Lane. While it’s not the same as White Hart Lane, it’s an amazing stadium.

Bit weird to see a different stadium name
Walking down from Seven Sisters and sighting the golden cockerell

Dan Levy honestly deserves a statue in front of the stadium. It’s not just world class, its class setting. I’ve been to a fair number of stadiums over the years and most of them have been shit. Our home is other worldly. It has cheap alcohol, really cheap alcohol, decent food, you’re close to the pitch, it’s beautiful to look at, the sound resonates in the stadium and most importantly it’s in Tottenham. The walk down from Seven Sister is not that different from when I last came in 2017. It’s still pretty crap. It’s Tottenham after all. However, as you walk, you see the golden cockerel glistening in the light. On a brand-new stadium which rises out of the ground. A spaceship, given how modern it is compared to everything in the surrounding area.

The interior of the stadium, looking at the largest single tier in the world.

I’m not going to go into the details of Son taking apart Palace and seeing the first new player in ages (cheers Daniel) when Ndombele walked onto the pitch. What I realised is that I miss going to live events. I know that I’m writing here, on a very non-live format. However, seeing the football reminded me that sport is best viewed there. Not necessarily for the view, though mine was gorgeous, but for everything else that happens. Most importantly is the singing, in football at least.

I miss going to live events

The main takeaway from this week

Singing at a pub or at home is not the same. The roar of the crowd, where the sea of emotions ebbs and flows, is best felt and sent across to the team in the stadium. You can be nervous at home, abroad or surrounded in a Spurs only environment. It’s just not the same. If you are not a sport fan, think about watch a concert on YouTube vs being at one. It’s not even worth comparing. Being there there, if you catch my drift.

Gorgeous

I also miss how easy it is to escape at these events. No phone out and about needed. Just focus.

Podcast

Also just wanted to point out that I’m on a podcast called Chai Noon where myself and Kiran talk about our experiences of life and being brown.

Here are some links to find them:

Anchor: https://anchor.fm/kiran6

Stitcher: https://www.stitcher.com/podcast/kiran/chai-noon?refid=stpr

Spotify: https://open.spotify.com/show/2NJPlT9cmhhnlmiSoQBTtZ

Apple: https://podcasts.apple.com/us/podcast/chai-noon/id1478436904

RSS: https://anchor.fm/s/dc949a8/podcast/rss

Heading home from the game, maybe you should listen to a podcast next time you head home… Just suggesting…