London is one the world’s greatest cities, yes, but it’s also one of the world’s most chaotically laid out too.
The problem is of course that it’s not really one big city, but two smaller ones – The City of London and the City of Westminster, plus a couple of dozen towns and several hundred small villages thrown in for good measure. Mix that lot together and leave them to mutate for a thousand years or so and it’s no wonder we’ve not got the neatly laid out grid system you’ll find in a Johnny-come-lately North American metropolis.
So we get lost. Often.
In recent years though, thanks to the wonders of ‘Satellite Navigation’, the dread of crossing the river and heading into unknown lands – whether you be a north or south Londoner – has been somewhat diminished.
The only snag has been having to resist the temptation to rip the damn thing apart as it squawks away in an imperious, unnatural tone. There’s only so much ‘I said turn left you moron’ you can take from a lump of chip, wire and plastic.
To counter this auto-anger there’s been the emergence of famous voices taking over the Sat-Nav mantle. From Jeremy Clarkson barking ‘faster’ to Darth Vader urging you to ‘turn to the dark side’; the choice is yours.
Being a child of the summer of love, I like my jabber a touch more psychedelic. Which as a mop-haired, flares-wearing child meant sitting down and watching the colourful world of Sesame Street. So we were pleased to hear this week that the latest voices for the Tom Tom Sat Nav hail from that very thoroughfare.
And if it all gets too much, take Bert’s advice (@57 secs in the video below) and simply holler ‘I’m getting out of the car’.
For more on Bert and Ernie’s recording for Tom Tom see: