10 Ordinary Things That London Took And Made Weird

Georgie Hoole Georgie Hoole - EXECUTIVE EDITOR

10 Ordinary Things That London Took And Made Weird

Londoners are an innovative bunch. Back in the day we were the geniuses who put the chocolate on digestive biscuits and the crackers into Christmas, so you certainly can’t mark us down for originality. Nowadays, however, a chocolate digestive just isn’t big enough or bold enough. Oh no! We need multicoloured bagels and panoramic views of London while we sit on the toilet. You may have noticed that we’re pretty good at taking fairly ordinary things, like bingo or burgers, and making them downright bizarre…


1. Bagels

[Business Insider]
Take a regular bagel and add a sh*t ton of food colouring and you get… The Rainbow Bagel. In a conversation about weird food crazes, this colourful food phenomena will never escape a mention. We technically didn’t come up with the idea, a crazy bloke from New York did, but we were second in line (we think), and they are still pretty famous in our ends. You can get one from Brick Lane’s Beigel Shop (That’s the yellow one if you’re wondering).


2. Bingo

[The Lizard in London]
Bogan bingo is just like regular bingo, except without your gran and with the added bonus of a couple of nutty Australians. It’s a comedy show cum bingo night, with lots of drinking and many prizes to be won. It’s bingo like you’ve never experienced before…


3. Milkshakes

[Le Freakshaker at Pond Dalston]
Just when we thought an Oreo milkshake was crazy enough, in entered the infamous freakshake. Available in various places across London, cafes seem to be competing for the freakiest shake. Macaroons? Doughnuts? An entire slab of M&Ms cake? You could literally pile anything on top of these bad boys…


4. Graffiti

[Now Here This]
We’ve seen some pretty crazy street art in our time, but this takes ‘graffiti’ to a whole new level. INSA, the incredible British artist, has shown us modern art at it’s finest with his animated murals that can be found across London. He paints layers of slightly different images on top of each other, taking pictures of each layer as he goes. He then turns it into a GIF that we are able to view by downloading an app onto our phones. It’s a weird and wonderful digital-physical fusion.


5. Burgers

[Look at those juicy buns…]
London is pretty darn trendy and the blaring avocado trend has not gone unnoticed. These bizarre buns are a great breadless alternative for veggies, vegans or gluten free foodies… or just those of you who love a niche product. You’ll find these crazy burgers at Joe’s Southern Table in Covent Garden. We might need to go and have a peek because we’re not actually convinced that they are real…


6. The Law

[The Mirror]
London has a habit of adopting weird modern trends, but it turns out it has actually been totally bonkers for quite some time. If you flick back through the rule book, you’ll find some very weird laws: it is illegal to carry a plank along a pavement; it is illegal to beat or shake any carpet or rug in any street; it is illegal to handle salmon in suspicious circumstances (a genuine offence under the Salmon Act 1986) and it is also illegal to be drunk on a licensed premises. It’s probably not often that the first three rules are broken, but that latter one… hmmm…


7. Afternoon Tea

[Olive Magazine]
We’re unsure if this makes science weird or afternoon tea weird, but we reckon it’s probably both. They’ve got mango mousse volcanoes and raspberry planets, chocolate dinosaurs and Milky Way macaroons. And it’s not the only wacky tea there is in the city, either. There has been punk afternoon tea (appropriately named Anarch-tea), oriental afternoon tea and an afternoon tea inspired by old school board games. If you can think it, London can do it…

Here’s our list of Wacky and Wonderful Afternoon Teas in London


8. Words

[The dog and bone’s been ringing all day…]
Have a conversation with a ‘proper’ Londoner (that’s how they’ll describe themselves) and you’ll soon understand why this is on the list:

“They’ll be barney rubble if you don’t get down those apple and pears and answer the bloody dog and bone” [Said in a Cockney accent]


9. Going to the toilet

[Poop Bucket List]
We really do have to add a bit of kook and quirk to everything, don’t we? The above ‘loo with a view’ is on the 68th floor of the Shard


[Futuristic loos at Sketch…]
…and these ones are at Sketch in Mayfair. We’re a bit scared to use them just in case we reappear in different century or dimension.


10. Normal human interaction

We said we were original, but this one shouldn’t get quite the same applause as some of the other things in this article. In any other place, smiling and chatting would be considered totally normal, but if you so much as look at another person in London, you’re dubbed as a weirdo. Who knows, trends come and go, so maybe it’ll be cool to make eye-contact with strangers someday…


Feature image: Bookatable

Also published on Medium.

Tags: trends, weird
Things To Do