Friday, 20 May 2011

a field student of E17 sniffs

This field student of E17 is looking forward to the Olympics with a sense of dread as yet more details are revealed about the so called temporary difficulties Londoners are going to have to endure, particularly when it comes to transport. The global sport and cultural spectacle will commandeer public highways in order to make the event more convenient to access for the global market’s executive elite - bankers being chief among them. Lord Coe frequently defends this privilege saying the games would not be possible without the corporate sponsors. Who will pay the fines if they are imposed for an increase in air pollution?  For the rest of us, the plebeians, London may be akin to what is a derivative of convenient, namely, (a) Convenience.
Being quintessentially English this field student regards it as his duty (in preparation for the games) to develop, fine hone and maintain a sense of toilet or olfactory humour so that he may impress visitors from further athletic afield. As a student of Situationism and ‘psychogeography’ he intends studying the cycles, routes and patterns of pong here in E17 so that he might share this knowledge with visitors who have come to be lost here.    
With this revived ambition, Field Study’s man in E17 resumed his exploration of Walthamstow’s dark paths on Tuesday evening. He ventured into the nocturnal ways of drooping and wilting vaulted corridors. Floral ramblers and climbers buckled overhead, hanging heavy under the weight of their thirst. Where is the rain? Dry though these paths may have been, their air was still suffused with humid and pungent miasmas. What has been so thuriferous? Foxes, dogs, cats, rats, flowers and drunks (and what else?) may have revelled night after night in orgies of olfactory banter, each declaring their territories. So long since it has rained, his footsteps disturbed what seemed to be layers upon layers of scents, archaeological strata of dusty secretions and excreta designed to repel and attract. Indeed the bouquet of Beulah Path might have clung malodorously to the field student all the way home. He needed a field shower and so danced a rain dance the length of Beulah Path, whirling in thrall to the proclivities of spring - calling for rain to sweeten these traces of desire. The clouds answered by gathering over the path and dropped rain drops the size of ping pong balls, all together a maelstrom of overwhelming intricacy.


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