Tag Archives: London

London you never read: The outtakes

By Laura Grimes

The Pantsless Brother was passing through town recently, but I was prepared this time. Gas or no gas, I found him some pants. Whatcha think?

Party pants for The Pantsless Brother

A clever friend sent the photo to me, and she can’t remember where it came from. Gotta love those flames on top of the head. But is that … smoke coming from those ruffled BVDs?

The Pantsless Brother is now so concerned I’ll further inflame his reputation that he regularly will go on about some crazy tale and then say … “Don’t write about that.” or “I don’t want that showing up in your blog.” or “You don’t get to blog about that.”

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London, Part 10: Cheerio, it’s been lovely

By Laura Grimes



“Cheese! Where’s the cheese?”

The Pantsless Brother and I say this nearly every time we scurry through the mazes of the Underground trying to find the right train. We feel just like rats.


It’s time to say goodbye to all the fun we’ve been having. It doesn’t look like the ash cloud is going to favor us with another return to cancel our flights again. I miss Mr. Scatter and the Large Smelly Boys anyway, and JoJo is looking forward to seeing his buddies in the hood.

As I type, The PB and I are sharing one last beer together — the Hobgoblin. Only one beer tonight, not four. And as he put it, “None of that foreplay stuff with the lousy beers. We’re going straight for the (insert sexy word that sounds like origami, but it’s not).”

Continue reading London, Part 10: Cheerio, it’s been lovely

London, Part 8: Waylaid by an ash cloud

By Laura Grimes

“Headline: ‘British air space may shut as ash cloud resumes.’ Would someone please tell my husband I might be late for dinner?”

I put that post on Facebook a few days ago. It was soon followed by a comment from the Small Large Smelly Boy: “Are you going to be home for dessert?”

It turns out I won’t be home for several desserts. My flight was cancelled and I rebooked it for four days later. (The Pantsless Brother, too.)

Oh, to be “stuck” in London. Oh, to have to rebook a flight in a travel industry that surprisingly doesn’t know how to deal with it.

Let’s see … I am flying Continental, operated by United, reserved by Air Canada, booked through Travelocity. Continental won’t take calls, United doesn’t recognize me, Air Canada won’t deal with a Continental flight, Travelocity can’t make sense of it.

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London, Part 5: From mayhem to fairies

By Laura Grimes

Quick! Take a picture! JoJo found a new buddy who was very nice about playing with him, even though it was against the rules.

The Yeoman Warders at the Tower of London aren’t supposed to hold things while their pictures are being taken. Someone snapped a photo a few years back of a Warder holding something and it was photoshopped and turned into something naughty. So sad. But JoJo is small and cute and somehow got away with it, though the Warder first looked around furtively and said I had to be fast about it. Can you find JoJo?

Yeoman Warder at the Tower of London


The Pantsless Brother and I pulled on our warm clothes and went to see A Midsummer Night’s Dream at Shakespeare’s Globe Theatre. It was the end of a short run at the Globe before the show hit the road as one of the company’s two touring productions. Through August, the show can be seen in various places throughout England and Europe.

Continue reading London, Part 5: From mayhem to fairies

London, Part 4: JoJo runs wild

By Laura Grimes

The Pantsless Brother tried to make a dash for the bathroom this morning without getting dressed first. Too late! I see London, I see France …

As it so happens, he was taking the bullet train from London to Paris that very day.


I have reams to write about, but I’m just too pooped, so I’ll only post a few quick impressions to keep the LSBs happy.

JoJo found more friends, this time on a plaque near the Tower Bridge commemorating the 50th anniversary, or jubilee, of Queen Victoria’s reign. Can you find JoJo?

JoJo and a plaque commemorating Queen Victoria's jubilee

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London, Part 3: Tate and other titters

By Laura Grimes

JoJo didn’t come out to play much today. It’s possible he was shy, but between you and me, I think he stayed up too late.

He did, however, find this friend in the churchyard at St. Paul’s Cathedral:

JoJo and the angel


We spent most of our time at the Tate Modern, which celebrates its 10th anniversary this weekend. I should be more inspired to write about it, but I’m not. I was looking forward to this more than anything, but it was crowded, rowdy and noisy. People took photos and answered loud ringing phones. I was in the middle of looking at a painting and a red light appeared in the middle of it from someone’s camera. I was in the middle of looking at something else, and a kid right next to my ear hollered to his friends across the room. People stood in doorways so I couldn’t pass and pretty much annoyed me in every possible way. I like a lot of people in a museum. I don’t like inconsiderate behavior. Only once in several hours did I hear a guard talk to someone.

So I’ll share only one small story:

Dieter Roth (1930-98) has an abstract titled Self-portrait of a Drowning Man (1974) made with acrylic, watercolor and glue on cardboard. The image is copyrighted, so I won’t show it, but you can see it here.

The display caption has this excerpt:

In order to bring the work to London in his suitcase, he cut it into a number of pieces. This gesture was characteristic of Roth’s irreverent approach to the art object. He was especially open to changes that would occur after he had “finished” the work, such as the process of cracking which is visible here.


Spoiler alert! I’m happy that I found the coolest ruler ever at the Tate Modern. My friend, Holly, and I have long collected rulers for each other. At first we did it unwittingly, but after several years we realized we had a tradition. I can’t show it so that you get the full effect, but you can see it here. You’ll see what I mean.


London, Part 2: The political shuffle

By Laura Grimes

A constant thrum of helicopters filled the air today. I know that sound, and when I hear it I look for it. It’s one thing when the helicopters are moving. It’s another thing when they’re hovering. It means something’s up.

The Pantsless Brother and I shared some van Eyck, Rembrandt and Turner together at the National Gallery and then he took off for Dublin to chase some Vermeer (seriously). After several hours he sent me a note asking what I did when he was gone and I replied that I had just posted this on Facebook:

Cool hanging outside 10 Downing Street today with protesters, tourists, black suits, reporters and police. It’s gotta be one of the weirdest political climates in British history since WWII — a hung parliament, mad party coalition negotiations that quickly flip-flopped, and a sudden change of tenants at the prime minister’s residence.

Here’s the biggest crowd I came upon:


I couldn’t get a closer shot with a better angle without risking being obnoxious or being in the middle of heavy vehicle traffic. (Now I wish I had done both.) However, just a little farther down the sidewalk I came upon a small group of people who were waiting patiently at an iron gate. It was the opening to Downing Street, otherwise known as where the British prime minister lives. This proved to be the more interesting spot, not that I saw much more than black cars with tinted windows and a security detail. The speeches came a few hours after I left. What was all the hubbub?

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London: Flying high on the blog

by Laura Grimes

JoJo and I say hello from London. Let’s surprise Mr. Scatter by filling him in this way about our travels, shall we?

Editor’s note before I begin: I have The Wimpy Camera and when it comes to camera equipment, even the wimpy kind, I am technically disabled. So my deep apologies in advance. (Some of these photos were taken with The Wimpier Camera, my Blackberry.)


Postcard from London to Portland, London to Portland

When I picked up this postcard from SCRAP in Portland a few weeks back, my friend, Holly, said, “If you send me that from London, I’ll know where it came from.” Well, guess what?


The Pantsless Brother (TPB) has been waylaid by an ash cloud. Regular Scatterers will remember his predicament with gas in his pants so being waylaid by an ash cloud should be considered par for the course for him. In the meantime, I’ll scatter while I wait late at night and try not to drink all the beer before he gets here.


Before JoJo and I left Portland, his buddies in the hood wished him well:

JoJo's buddies from the hood


After having endless trouble checking in online a day before departure I’m happy to report that once I was at the airport I was checked in, through security and had ordered coffee even before Mr. Scatter was back home. Considering we live only a hop, skip and barely 20 minutes from the airport … slick!

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