Posted by: apopalyptic | 05/20/2010

London is a palimpsest

London is my favorite city in the whole world. It’s the center of the universe (not to be confused with New York, which is the center of the world). The point of the trip was to go to the Pavement-curated ATP at Butlins Holiday Camp in beautiful, scenic Minehead; but I did get to spend a few days visiting my most favorite place. London is a palimpsest. The entire place is just text on top of text on top of text. Buildings, music, history… it’s all layers, like the most delicious cake you can imagine.

Of course, some of these layers are completely apocalyptic. First of all, this is the city that sent it’s children out into the countryside, or even to America to escape the air raids during WWII.  You can’t really get more apocalyptic than that, and ever since then, I think, there has been some element of End Times in London culture, especially fashion. I mean, have you seen A Clockwork Orange? Or been to a rave (the UK kind, not the kind where somebody makes you give an egg to the convenience store worker and you’re going in a car with some kid named Brandon and his twin sister, Brenda)? Totally apocalyptic.

With  the idea of making sure that I shopped specifically with my fashion question in mind, Pam took me to Carnaby Street, where I scored the most perfect aubergine pashmina for three quid (about five bucks, can’t beat that!), a shade that I haven’t found at any of the pashmina kiosks in America. But, the store de resistance was the most spectacular Muji, of which there is only one in America (in New York). I got this top*, made out of recycled yarn:

One thing we will have to do, post-the-end-of-the-world, is to create new fabrics out of old ones, weaving together yarns of different stripes to create a new yarn. Those with the ability to spin new material out of old, some perhaps even asynchronous with each other, will be those with the important skills. They will crate a 2.0 version of something that looks everything and nothing like the original: a palimpsest!

*I also got a dress, but that will be for another post.


  1. technically there are TWO Mujis in New York: a medium one and a large one. Not that it does us much good.

    • I saw the one near Times Square on the map. Is that the big one? This Muji at Carnaby Street is the smaller Muji.

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