15 June – Stereotype Snap



For a change, I decided to play a card game when I ran this morning. And I chose stereotype snap. The map shows you exactly where I picked up each stereotype or not. The whole idea is to pick up stereotypes and get points for each one I saw on my run through their respective zones. Now Friday is not a typical day in London, the commuters are noticeably fewer than usual, meaning stereotype snap is not such a point scorer as you may imagine.

I started off at Old Street, looking for Tech Start Up Stereotypes – identified by Apple branded everything and usually a pair of Dr Dre Beats. My score = Nil

Aiming towards Farringdon, I wasn’t aware of seeing any Start Up Stereotypes, but I did see at least two ‘More Media’ stereotypes. Their artwork type briefcases and tight trousers gave them away. My score = 2

On towards Lawyer Wanker territory, – typified by all black clothing and sharp, bright white shirt shirting, regardless of gender. The most monochrome experience you can get in one area – any hint of colour frowned upon. My score = 30+ (I lost count)

Soho,  rather surprisingly isn’t given any stereotypes on the map. But I did pass 20th Century Fox and an interestingly named restaurant…, but Covent Garden wasn’t far away, so onwards to find the Living Statue Wankers.  I’m thinking 8.30 am is too early for them to get up – even Yoda, who thinks we are fooled by his capacious gown, which clearly doesn’t have enough room for an alarm clock. My score = Nil

Then back towards Fleet Street in search of ‘Journalists Used To Be Here’. As the pubs were not yet open, there was no sign of any old soaks reminiscing about the good old days when you smoked 40 John Player Specials for Breakfast with a Johnnie Walker chaser or five. My score = Nil

My final stereotype search was for ‘Nervous Men Buying Rings’ in Hatton Garden, or at a push I’d have settled for ‘Old Men Plotting a Bank Vault Raid’. With me running before 9am,  this clearly meant all the plotters (whether for burglary or marriage) weren’t yet out. My score =Nil

Total Stereotype Score = 32 points.

Running score however was 9kms.


Alison – Elvis Costello

Eloise – The Damned

Francine – ZZ Top

Gloria – Laura Branigan

Helena – My Chemical Romance

Poison Ivy – The Lambrettas

Jean Genie – David Bowie

Shake It Off – Taylor Swift

Kayleigh – Marillion

Layla – Derek and the Dominoes

Maggie May – Rod Stewart

Darling Nikki – His Purple Highness

Ophelia – The Band

Queen of Clubs – KC and The Sunshine Band

Roxanne – The Police

Sherry – Frankie Valli and The Four Seasons

Teresa – Eddie Cochran

Single Ladies – Beyoncé

Valerie – Ronson and Winehouse

St Xenia – Katina

Zoe Jane – Staind


Distance 9.06km

Time 57:35

Average Pace 6:21

Elevation Gain 40 metres

Alzheimer’s Challenge

Kms Run 1034.76

To Run 983.24






8 Feb – Whining and Dining


Yesterday evening we went for a wine tasting in a posh London club. It didn’t start fantastically;  we arrived a few minutes early, and then were told that the tasting had been put back 30 minutes because so many people couldn’t make the advertised start time.

Pity they never thought to tell that information to the 50% of attendees who were able to get there on time… So we hung around and then went to the tasting. The lack of organisation continued, no-one really knew how it was supposed to work, some of us had glasses, some didn’t. Then the bartender came around and gave out glasses, telling us that each measure would be poured by the staff.

Still no welcome or announcements on how the evening would work. The sommelier, (in my opinion) was not great at communicating and in fact lost the audience almost from the outset, when people couldn’t hear him and asked him to speak up, he had to reiterate that he wanted them to stand near him.

The wine descriptions weren’t terribly informative and he wasn’t giving a lot of insight; as he seemed a little reticent, I thought I would help him by asking a question about food matching.  He answered that and the tasting progressed. It’s not his fault that he is not a natural speaker or raconteur, he was a bit like a tech geek. He knew all the stuff, but found it difficult to relay the information.

For a second time, when various groups of the attendees, were talking amongst themselves, I asked another question. It was again based around food and what I thought I’d tasted – then I suggested a dessert to pair with the wine and what did he think? He agreed I could taste butterscotch but that my food choice was totally wrong  “No, no no” and the audience started to laugh.

I have to say I was pissed off, I had been throwing him some lifelines, because he had lost his audience and he repaid me by facilitating a laugh at my expense.  In the interests of balance, I don’t think he had any idea that I’d been helping him, or that he was struggling, or in fact that his riposte was ill-considered. To my surprise the more gallant guy standing next to me said, ‘Well I’d love to eat that dessert and drink that wine with you, it sounds a good choice’. Better humour was restored!

The tasting didn’t get much better, the sommelier continued really as he had before and when describing another wine, I did tap my glass to get people to shut up to listen to him. I can be remarkably stupid at times – why should I offer him a hand at all?

It’s fair to say we won’t be going back. And for me now, he is short-sighted, because we go, not often, but regularly, to wine tastings. Now he and his company are off that list – we will spend our money elsewhere…

What’s this got to do with running I hear you ask. Well my challenge for Alzheimer’s has been described as both brave and to be honest somewhat foolish. But the difference I’ve found with my running buddies and friends, is that everyone is supportive.

The best people have come up with ways of me making the challenge, rather than laughing at my suggestion that I can do it. And for that I thank them all. Whilst I won’t be going to wine tastings with them, I do hope to repay their kindness and support with similar when they need it, whether it is running or something unrelated. And so to this morning, when I woke I had lots of messages of support from fellow C25Kers and one in particular gave me a really cheery breakfast.

I dined on that goodwill first thing and now am going for my run…