SIMON FOSTER

Art Directed post

On Yer Bike Son

Jun 10 2012

I’m unfit, really unfit, just quite how unfit I am was made appar­ent to me today when I went for a bike ride around my local park. This is a result of the one draw­back (that I’ve found so far) to work­ing as a free­lancer from home. I sit on my arse all day long. It’s all too easy to get in the habit of not exer­cis­ing and whilst it is nice to be able to laze around I realise it isn’t good for me, nei­ther phys­i­cally, men­tally or creatively.

I’ve no excuse either as I live oppo­site a really nice park and have a fancy rac­ing bike that I’ve spent loads of money build­ing from scratch.

So I’ve made a mid-years res­o­lu­tion that I’m gonna do at least one lap of the park each day (unless it’s rain­ing really bad) to improve my fit­ness and in writ­ing this post I’m hop­ing that it’ll give me the push I need to get off my arse.

The park in ques­tion is Glad­stone Park in Willes­den Green Lon­don, which is steeped in his­tory (Mark Twain once vis­ited, don’t you know) and is quite pic­turesque this time of year (if you ignore the occa­sional chav speed­ing through it on a stolen moped being chased by the Old Bill)

Bonus Fact

Glad­stone Park is home to sev­eral hun­dred bright green (and very noisy) par­rots. Yes wild par­rots liv­ing in Lon­don, crazy right? but after some dig­ging around I found that there are approx­i­mately 40,000 wild para­keets liv­ing in Lon­don and they have been seen as far north as Glasgow.

Parrot

There are two myths that are pop­u­lar regard­ing their ori­gin, firstly (and my favourite) that they were released by Jimi Hen­drix in the 60’s and sec­ondly that they escaped from Shep­per­ton film stu­dios dur­ing the film­ing of The African Queen in 1950.

The colonies of wild par­rots wide­spread today in Lon­don and south-east Eng­land are descended from birds which Jimi Hen­drix released in the 1960s to add some psyche­delic colour to the city.

The truth of their ori­gin how­ever, is less exciting.