Tag Archives: London

The Practical Escalaphobe

So the other night I had the great joy of seeing Dave Gorman and Jay Foreman performing live in Newbury, and also meeting both gentlemen after their respective acts.  They were absolutely lovely, although I wound up slightly embarrassed as it turns out I have an enthusiastic ‘pick me, pick me’ (apparently) whoop.  Or at least that’s what was said when I gave my little cheer following the request for those with an irrational fear to give a cheer, and I had to then say what mine was, in front of around 150 people, being completely on my own (Thursday night is poker night for a lot of my friends, so they were there instead).

This got me thinking on an idea I’d had some time ago to write a poem about my very silly and completely irrational fear – escalaphobia.  No I didn’t make that up, it is a real word for a real phobia, and it involves escalators.  For those of you who aren’t familiar with the British term, I’m talking about those staircases which move.  Now I’m pretty lucky as I only have a problem with the down side, up is no problem to me at all.  Unfortunately I have panic attacks when I do use them and pretty much stop breathing or being able to see.  You can imagine how ‘interesting’ trips around London are using the Underground.  But I don’t let it stop me, oh no…

The Practical Escalaphobe
I’m a practical escalaphobe,
Don’t let my terror stop me.
The panic and the fight for breath,
The inability to see.
I’m a practical escalaphobe,
I know my fear seems strange.
Up is fine but down is bad,
A fact I’ve tried to change.
I’m a practical escalaphobe,
And I haven’t passed out yet.
But my friends still get concerned,
Ready to catch me they always get.
I’m a practical escalaphobe,
Although I sometimes try too hard.
Like attempting the longest in Europe,
My nails, the handrail scared. 
I’m a practical escalaphobe,
And keep trying to use them I will.
Whether I must ride them down,
Or use them as stairs when they’re still.
16/02/2012 + 08/04/2012

If anyone is interested, I found this blog post on the subject Elevator World and a website on the subject Fear of Stuff – Escalators.



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How Rude!

One day I was in London with friends negotiating the Underground and got barged out of the way by someone I’d actually half turned out of the way of, even though they had three feet of space to one side.  My notebook was promptly whipped out when we made it on to the train and a few lines scribbled.

How Rude!
There’s three feet to the left of them,
But still they barge on through.
It seems that on the Underground,
That’s the thing to do.
How rude!

In other news, I’ve heard back about ‘Ten of the Best’ (having worked out a LOT more than ten had been contacted).  It seems they’re having trouble picking so are going to keep working on it and let me know, but if I don’t hear then thanks for submitting but I’m not in.  Considering that not everyone who has submitted has received that e-mail, I’m guessing I’ve made it through round one?  Time will tell.  Patience!


Also, a lovely new poetry forum has been founded by a lady going by the name of VickyEmma, feel free to join us over at Pop Poetry.  I’ve already joined and even posted a little rhyming bio thread under the name of DisjointedRhymings.  Aren’t I the original one 😉


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On a Hat Stand

Trying out my idea of posting twice a week, Sunday evening as currently, but also on a Wednesday evening.  We’ll see how it goes for a few weeks before I decide whether to make it the new schedule or not.  Let me know what you think either by commenting, tweeting ( @disjointedrhyme ), e-mailing (disjointedrhymings@gmail.com) or via the Facebook page which is just to the left.

I had to go to London a couple of weeks ago, and as I stood at the platform waiting for the train to stop, I spotted a hat stand a couple of carriages up from the one I got on.  It amused me, so I’ve been trying to get a rhyme about it ever since.  Enjoy!


On a Hat Stand
A hat stand on an Underground train,
Seems to me just a little bit odd.
But who am I to comment or complain,
Although I still wonder why it was.
Such elegant white-painted wood,
Topped with a smart new bowler hat.
Serene amongst the crowds it stood,
Long black coat draped over an arm.
Maybe it was an art installation,
A silent social commentary.
Reminding us who we are in this nation,
Land of cricket and crumpets and tea.
Perhaps it was merely some shopping,
The only practical way to get home.
As for the stand bearing clothing,
Well it sure does get hot on the Tube.
Having thought on it all I can say,
Is at the end of the day does it matter?
Whatever randomness you see on your way,
Just enjoy it and have a wee smile.


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An Icy Paradox

Slightly out of season this one, but I felt like posting it.  Quite simply, these are my observations on the attitudes of native-Londoners.  They tend to be rather icy and insular (never look at one on the tube, and if you do and accidentally make eye-contact, DO NOT smile).  Yet when it snowed, they suddenly got really friendly and sociable.  Strange people!  Enjoy 🙂


An Icy Paradox
A City filled with icemen,
Frozen faces,
Frozen hearts.

Leaden skies of darkest grey,
Icy winds drove falling snow.
From work and school it kept them away.

#Not had a snow like this for fifteen years#

And something strange in London Town,
As things grew colder the city hearts melted.
Gone was the fixed forbidding frown,
Replaced by friendly warming smiles.

A City filled with snowmen,
Frozen flakes,
Frozen ponds.

Alas such a heart-thaw could not last,
And the snow melted the next day.
As warmer winds usurped the Arctic blast,
Their demeanour grew cold once more.

#A bit warmer this week, things getting back to normal#

Wintry skies of cloud scattered blue,
Dirtied slush lingers in the gutters.
Icepeople return to whatever they do.

A City filled with icemen,
Frozen faces,
Frozen hearts.


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