South Bermondsey, October 2008

by George Pringle

Excerpt from “Lone Stranger – Tour Diaries”

“Would you actually eat anything unless I gave you something?” he said to me, amused, roughly cutting a stale baguette before stuffing it with all the pornographic hues of some processed mortadella.

I didn’t say anything, although I did silently compute this truth. I suppose all the cigarettes made it so I never got hungry. I just wasn’t ever really hungry. It was strange, I never needed much food. I struggled to think what I ate….perhaps he had a point. I took the sandwich and ate it, reluctantly before going back into the room and listening to a fake Moog looping, on repeat.

Food had always been so complicated. I’d always had such a fat little head on-top of that thin little body. I supposed I looked about twelve years old. I could see it when they took pictures of me, when I was singing. My face was a round little ball.

The next day, somewhat self-consciously, I went to the Millwall cafe and ate some fish and chips. It was the only place for miles you could eat unless you strayed from the industrial estate to the Old Kent Road, to pick amongst the chicken wings. No, this midway cafe was quiet and I felt as though I could be left alone. God, I just couldn’t stand it when people saw me eat. I drank a can of Fanta and read a copy of The Sun. A guy in overalls stared at me over his sausage sandwich. He must think I’m a prick, I thought, suddenly aware in the bleach of my hair and my thick, mink eyeshadow. My earrings swung like pendulums above the batter below.

I went back to the studio and puked in the toilet.