So I’m in Newcastle to give a speech and I happened to see this article about a village called Shitterton that wants to change its name, as some locals feel the name is hurting property values. Imagine that. Best of all is the sidebar which lists other towns over here that have really bad names, like Cockington, Lickey End, Nob End, Thong, Ugley, Wetwang, Twatt, Penistone, Bitchfield, Crapstone and Cockermouth.
Meanwhile, just to digress a bit, and I just wrote to Jony about this too — what the fuck is up with the way people talk up here? I mean they open their mouths and sounds come out but I can’t understand any of it. I’m not even sure it’s English. It’s all a bit disappointing especially because I was really looking forward to the visit and as a huge Beatles fan I’ve always thought of this as kind of a holy place, like Mecca, or Sedona, and I realize the Merseybeat stuff happened nearly 50 years ago (can you believe it?) but still I figured there’d be something.
I’m sad to report, however, that this is a pretty grim little city and worse yet there’s precious little done here to commemorate the Beatles. I went out this morning and got a taxi and asked the driver if he could show me the Rathskeller or the Cavern Club or any other places of note. The guy just looked at me. How about Abbey Road then, I said. Again, nothing. I thought maybe it was just the way I talk — maybe they have as much difficulty understanding my accent as I do with theirs. Back at the hotel, however, I asked and they told me there’s really not much to see here regarding the Beatles. No museum, not even a souvenir shop. Bit of a letdown, but times change. Or tempus fugit, as they say in German. They’ve also never heard of a mango smoothie. Oh well. I’m feeling old.