Ben’s Canteen, Comics Unmasked, Kitty Daisy & Lewis, knowing when to quit and my new word CUCUMBIAN

16 Aug

I made up a new word. (Bear with me, I’m really excited about it and I need to unleash the excitement).

The word? Cucumbian.

It could mean of or pertaining to a cucumber. BUT – there’s more to it than that. A cucumber is 95% water but they’re actually quite hardy. Have you ever tried to snap a cucumber? It’s HARD. They taste of nothing but I still love the taste. They basically give you far more than you expect. If something is cucumbian, it has more impact that you initially thought. So, if you were to hit someone with cucumbian force, you’re hitting them far harder than you thought you would.  Or, harder than you knew yourself capable of hitting them. Or, you’re hitting them harder than THEY thought you would. Basically – the force or impact was more substantial than initially assumed. Perhaps you read a particularly cucumbian passage in a book – a passage which doesn’t seem like it’s saying much but it actually has quite a profound effect on you.

EAT: I’ve been to Ben’s Canteen before and I liked the place but I wasn’t blown away. However, I returned for a family meal and I have to say it was bloody wonderful.

So, surprise surprise I had the chicken burger. Buttermilk spiced chicken with bacon and slaw.  It seems everywhere that offers chicken does is ‘buttermilk’ style at the moment which I’m not complaining about… just a trend I’m noticing.

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In short: it was wonderful. Whatever they’ve done (new chef? new supplier?) it’s worked. The chicken was beautiful – tender and the spices brought more flavour to the burger which was great, without the batter being too thick. The bun was soft but toasted and wasn’t too heavy and the bacon was… well, it was bacon. It’s not too hard to get bacon right. Plenty of mayo (burgers are so dry without lashings of condiments) and the salad was fresh and crispy.

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The sweet potato chips were lovely too. Really thick and actually homemade (as it were) – so many places use the same trade frozen sweet potato chips. These were yummy and worth getting BUT they’re not crispy, just flavoursome.

Good food, lots of menu options (they do gluten free stuff too) and well worth a visit.

SEE: I went to see Comics Unmasked at the British Library last week – it’s running until August 19th and you have to book tickets in advance and I’d say it’s worth a visit. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not a big comic book fangirl – I went to the exhibition very much as a newbie. I wanted to learn more about the history of comics as I’ve always found them an interesting medium and a wonderfully subversive art form. And some of what’s on show is so darkly humorous – right up my street.

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Photography isn’t allowed, so I don’t aaactually have any record of the exhibits, so everything in this blog post I’ve nabbed from around the internet. The exhibition is split into different sections, the first being Mischief and Misbehaviour (which actually ends up being quite gruesome. Then again, it starts with the character ‘Punch’ so it was hardly a light-hearted start anyway). My favourite section was Politics and Power – as the exhibition is about British comics, Thatcher is featured in numerous publications and V for Vendetta also gets a lot of coverage. There are mannequins wearing V’s mask all around the exhibition too – the person I went with noticed that there is a CCTV camera hovering above one groups of Vs, which I hope was accidental.

There’s an entire section dedicated to sex with some great pieces in. Lost Girls (by Melinda Gebbie, Alan Moore’s wife) is on display, as is a wonderful cartoon of an orgy in which all the characters are talking about trivial and mundane things. Finally you move on to more modern cartoons and Batman and the superheroes.

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I was there for about 2 hours but I could have happily stayed longer – there’s a space where you can draw your illustrations but I didn’t get a chance to do that. I’d say allow 2.5 hours to really take everything in and be aware that there’s a fair bit of queuing involved! But definitely check it out if you’re a fan of social commentary, art, comics or literature. It’s a great exhibition and it’s ending at the end of the week so go go go!

LISTEN: I went to a Blues Bar the other night and Shazam-ed the hell out of numerous tracks (really, really sorry I turned that into a verb). One of the artists playing was Kitty, Daisy and Lewis. Their music is heavily influenced by swing, jump blues, r&b, country and rock and roll.

I absolutely love this kind of music, I’m getting more and more into it. Kitty, Daisy and Lewis are good from what I’ve heard so far. Not as guitar heavy as rock and roll but really interesting nonetheless.

LOVE: Dating, generally:

So I’m giving up. I’ve been ‘dating’ for 2 years. I’ve found that once every 4 months I find a guy I like enough to maybe go on a second date with. I’ve found that, on average, once a year I find someone I could actually fall for. Time and time again I’ve dated men who can’t comprehend just telling it like it is. Some told me how much they like me after we’d stopped talking – why on earth they just didn’t tell me when they had the chance to I have no idea. There have been other guys who I’ve been very clear with regarding the fact I don’t want to see them again… but they persist in getting in touch anyway.

The game playing has me tearing my hair out, so I’m officially hanging up my flattering dress and embracing the onesie. Until I can find someone who likes my frankness and has just as much of their own… meah.

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