Wednesday 4 July 2012

Classy Areas

Chez Ballard

I want to get out of the rat race of traffic. I want her to be a surfing girl, not a bar girl. I want quality of life. Characters on Escape to the Country. (Assumes the city is somewhere you want to escape.)

You're probably not going to find a vegan delicatessen round the corner in Wheatley. Relocation, Relocation

You're effectively paying £20,000 for every minute nearer to town. Property guru Phil Spencer

Westbourne Grove – an area that in 20 years has gone “from slightly rough to full-on trustafarian to total bankerisation". John Lanchester, The Guardian Jan 2012

The Guardian Weekend considers Matlock: Amusement arcades, splendidly tacky shops, chippies and caffs… The case against – some won’t like the tat... Look past the seaside veneer, and you’ll find a handsome town.

Upwards are always “looking past” things, and have trouble with the seaside. It’s too democratic – just anybody can go there. And that means the working classes, with their tacky taste, chippies and caffs.

Upwards, including psychogeographer Iain Sinclair, are bemused by writer J.G. Ballard. He spent his whole life in a 30s semi-detached house in the London suburb of Shepperton (after being liberated from the Japanese internment camp where he spent much of his childhood). Why didn’t he move away the instant he could afford it? He could have lived in a Georgian rectory in the middle of the country!

If they move out of town, upper middle class Upwards and posh Stow Crats can only live somewhere called “the real countryside”. The places where middle-class Weybridges live are ipso facto not rural and you refer to them as “leafy” – which is code for suburban. Upwards think they ought to want to live in the real countryside out of sight of other people, seeing nobody from the windows. So you can pretend all those other people who inhabit these islands don’t exist (because they are all, for some reason or other, the wrong kind of people).

Apparently one doesn’t live north of the Harrow Road... the Royal Borough of Kensington and Chelsea's website says "from the 1960s the overcrowded and dilapidated terraces were cleared and replaced by social housing including Goldfinger’s Trellick Tower".

And which ARE the wrong parts of France?

Quotes about areas here.
Where the Upwards Live. 
Where the Definitelies Live.

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