Friday Fun with photos, singing lessons & biscuits

There is a plethora of TfL fun this week. Obviously, you’ll already have seen the football themed underground map? But, have you ever wondered what the map might look like in German? No, neither had I, but thanks to Katie E for sharing a link with me, we all can!

The map is a large one – excluding the DLR and Overground, there are 270 stations. Such a vast number of locations can be tricky to memorise (though it’s got to be said, I’ve never tried). However, there’s now a song to help you! Fellow TfL nerd and comedian Jay Foreman has written a song that features all 270 stations. [You may remember Jay from his fabulous Unfinished London videos – one on the Northern Line, the other on a road building scheme. Both are fascinating.] So your challenge is to learn them:

But it’s not just the tube that’s had all the attention – this week has seen the launch of a website on which you can track the movement of buses across the capital. A transfixing and addictive occupation. Pick a route and voila! The current location of every bus currently moving along it. (For visual purposes, I’ve chosen the most scenic route in London – the RV1.)

Live RV1 Movement

Nicely segueing into my next discovery is this very early photograph of a Metropolitan Line train:

Metropolitan railway steam locomotiveMetropolitan Railway Train. (Credit.)

This is one of a set of photos from the National Media Museum collection, taken with the world’s first consumer-accessible camera – the Kodak No.1. It has to be said, I’d no idea that the first photos were circular! The set is fascinating, not least because the photographers had no form of view-finder, they simply pointed the box and hoped for the best. This was a favourite, as it looks like it was taken not too far away from my flat:

Hansom cabI’m disappointed that the caption’s been cut off – I’m nearly positive it’s Mecklenburgh Square.

Penultimately, we have a rather retro site – in that it doesn’t appear to have been updated since 2002 – that still has a great deal of charm. I have to thank Andy S for this find (I’d love to know what he was doing when he discovered it), as it’s a peculiarly compelling series of biscuit reviews (that link will take you to a page featuring the utterly awesome Tunnocks tea cake). Obviously, it’ll make you crave biscuits – so why not follow the direction of the website name and have a nice cup of tea and a sit down while you watch my final offering?

To round off this week, I highly recommend sitting down (with your tea and biscuits) and enjoying this for the phenomenal comedy that is Jimmy Fallon, Stephen Merchant & Joseph Gordon-Levitt having a lip-synching contest. SO many genuine laugh out loud moments – trust me! Anyone who can mime to Boom Shake the Room has my respect for an eternity…

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