nd so at nineteen, here I am in London – and London, it turns out, is the place for me. I was right. I was right that this was the place to go.
I moved down here a year ago, to a flat in Camden, to pursue my career as a music journalist. I brought three bin bags full of clothes, a TV, a laptop, a dog, an ashtray, a lighter in the shape of a gun, and a top hat. That was the sum total of my possessions. I didn’t need anything else.
London provides everything else – even things you’d never dreamed of. For instance, I’m so near Regent’s Park Zoo that I can hear the lions at night, fucking. They roar like they are trying to let the whole city know how sexual they are. I know that feeling. I want to let this whole city know how sexual I am. I see them as another one of those unexpected London bonuses – en-suite sexy lions.
This is something Wolverhampton would never give you. Although the downside is that the sexy lions drive the dog crazy. She barks until I order a Meat Feast pizza, and I give her the meatballs whilst I eat the crusts, and cheese. We are a good team. She is my pal. If I imagine the dog is a horse – which is easy, as she’s very large – I live a life that could largely be described as ‘that of Pippi Longstocking, but with whisky, and rock music’. To live in a city at nineteen, alone but for a pet, is to engage in adult pursuits, but with the vision of a child.
spent three days painting my flat electric blue, because, in Sound & Vision, that is what David Bowie did, and there is no better person to take interior decorating tips from than David Bowie.
I then tried to paint white clouds on the wall – to make it celestial – but it’s surprisingly hard to paint clouds with a big paintbrush and some white emulsion. The clouds look like empty speech bubbles; the walls look full of spaces where things should be said, but I don’t know what those things are yet. That’s part of being nineteen. You don’t yet know what your memorable speeches are. You haven’t said them yet.
When I have money, I have takeaway spaghetti bolognese for breakfast, every day, because that is the most treat-y meal, and children buy themselves meals that are treats. When I don’t have money, I live on baked potatoes – because they are treat-y, too.
I wake at noon, and stay out until 3 a.m., and then I have a bath, when I come home, because I can. It doesn’t wake anyone up. Every single one of those baths makes me happy. You leave home to have baths in the middle of the night. That is true independence.