>The original Tron was baffling for the thirteen-year-old TIW sat in Keighley Picture House. But Our Lad and me were there for the computer animation rather than the confusing but lame storyline. All done on the Foonly supercomputer with its astonishing two megabyte memory. There’d been nothing like it before – but of course, there’s been a lot like it since. Last night I saw Tron: Legacy. Not without its moments – though every time the CGI ‘young’ Jeff Bridges came on screen I couldn’t help but think “why have they made him look like Gary Barlow?”.
After that a drink was needed, so we nipped round the corner to The Kings Arms. The pub’s on Roupell Street SE1, part of a conservation area of early Victorian terraces which looks like it belongs on the cover of a book by Valerie Wood called something like ‘The Ragged Princess’ (“she was the daughter of a jellied eel seller, he was the Fifth Duke Of Witney”).
The King’s Arms is a multi-room boozer, modernised a bit but still retaining a lot of character and original features. When I worked nearby, I came here a lot, but i’ve not been in for months. Back then the beer could be a bit inconsistent, but last night the Adnam’s bitter was in prime nick, unlike the Doom Bar I kicked off with which just about OK. Out the back there’s what looks like a converted courtyard where you can be brusquely served Thai food. The bar staff are pretty brusque too. I don’t expect a high five when I order a round, but some verbal communication would be nice. And please, do something about the rickety bar stools. Sat swaying three feet in the air does not make for a relaxing visit. It was nice and warm though – old fashioned iron radiators and a real fire crackling away in the tap room. Good atmosphere too, and pleasingly busy for a chilly monday a week into the new year. Bit of a curate’s egg for me, this pub – it ticks a lot of my boxes but I didn’t find myself wishing I could still nip in after work. Hmm.
>On my 'rat run' walks from King's Cross station, I go past several of these 'corner' pubs. Some are really local boozers, others are for the local workers at lunchtimes…but they all have some sort of 'locals' connection, and I often think how much better Saltaire would have been with a few of 'em!
>Got Sir Titus to thank for that!