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Bear with me: Stitches @TheHopeTheatre

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What if your teddy bear could talk? My ten-year-old self would think that to be excellent. My more recent self would think it was a high-concept buddy movie with Mark Wahlberg. But in Stictches, Jonathan Blakeley's monologue, which he has written and performed, traces the life of his beloved Chloe, from when she was first given to him by her grandmother, wrapped with a red ribbon. It becomes a story not just about a cute bear (or maybe that should be rough, shaggy-looking bear given the performer’s appearance) observing life but an exploration of life and all of its stages. It's currently playing at the Hope Theatre .  The bear is not warm and fuzzy; he is a bit of a character and tough-talking, but also a bit anxious about being accepted and then discarded as nothing. But he is there to bear witness as she navigates the complicated facets of growing up and having a life. Ultimately, the bear has to deal with being consigned to a box with her other memories until circumstances

Life in London: Olympic bubbles and musings

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The Olympics have finished and for those who stayed in London it was a dream. The city was quiet, traffic was minimal, the tube seemed empty when I needed it and people were in a jolly mood. There was some seriously good sport to watch and so in a break from theatre I took the chance to see what drama was on offer of the muscle, sweat and lycra kind.

Scenes from the Northern Line Tuesday

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img_0833 , originally uploaded by Paul-in-London . What those crazy kids get up to on the Northern Line Tuesday... Or not... Close inspection suggested it had not been used...

Sights: On the underground

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Down in the underground, you'll find someone true... Down underground... Posted by email from paulinlondon's posterous

Icons of London: Bus stops

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250820088463 , originally uploaded by Paul-in-London . That Olympic handover ceremony in Beijing yesterday was really a chance for an overlooked London icon to have its moment in the sun: the bus stop (not to be confused with the bendy bus in the background). While a bus stop looks like a needle in haystack in a large stadium, in its natural habitat it seems to be of sensible enough proportions... Looking forward to seeing other pieces of public infrastructure on display for the opening ceremony such as, double yellow lines and burst water mains ...