Warning: contains dangerous amounts of human interaction.
I know, we’re as guilty as anyone else of propagating the idea that interacting with fellow humans on the Tube is a Bad Idea. But every now and then, something truly heartwarming happens down in the stuffy, dark bowels of London that reminds us of the beauty of connecting with our fellow Underground passengers – and one such video emerged over the weekend, captured by podcaster and musician Giles Paley-Phillips. Honestly, give it a watch, because you won’t regret it:
We need more of this kind of joy in the world pic.twitter.com/8rPjR1ZhY4
— Giles Paley-Phillips (@eliistender10) February 9, 2020
There’s so much to unpick here, but we’ll start with the basics. A busker at Leicester Square station, partway through an upbeat rendition of Twist and Shout this weekend, managed to get a group of apparent strangers dancing around together, eschewing the “no eye contact” rule and throwing out shapes at the bottom of the escalators.
From there, it evolves into a spontaneous conga line, as the busker transitions seamlessly from Twist and Shout to La Bamba without missing a beat to keep the party going. Props to the dancers, who continue to give it 100% even on the third and fourth turn around. Plus, that lady with the backpack who reaches the fringe of the crowd, see what’s happening, and then breaks into a jig! It’s truly glorious, enough to warm even the coldest of hearts and encourage even the frostiest of commuters to crack a smile.
I thought this kind of thing only happened in Richard Curtis films, but apparently the world can still surprise you (in nice ways, I hasten to add). Twitter, being a dark and cynical place, found it quite hard to believe:
Where the hell is this and what have they done with London? pic.twitter.com/JSUzXAiHez
— Tom Hale🐐 (@tommyhale91) February 9, 2020
To those who thinks this was staged, I’d argue that no-one being paid to perform in public could affect such a heady mix of joyous freedom and less-than-excellent limb coordination. We choose to believe in the magic of the world here at Secret London, and whilst I admit you’re unlikely to see this happen at 8am on a Monday, it’s a timely reminder of just why we love this city. Keep the magic alive, London!
In other heartwarming tube news, did you know the reason ‘Mind The Gap’ sounds so different at Embankment station?
Also published on Medium.