Leisure: I Went to See a Fight and a Hockey Game Broke Out
Written by: Violet Myers
Where I’m from the ice rink is merely a place to buy salvia and where teenagers go to get pregnant. It seems this apathy for the humble ice rink is shared throughout the rest of the country too. Other than during Christmas, where every other man and his dog rolls out a temporary rink, ice skating is low on the agenda for most Londoners. Ice hockey, the national sport of our extremely polite Canadian cousins is even lower on the country’s lineup with a mere ten national teams. To put that in perspective the UK have 92 premier league football teams.
One of these teams are local club The Haringey Racers who play regularly at Alexander Palace. We headed over to Ally Pally to have a chat with recreational league The London Rangers, who have been a team for 28 years, to find out a bit more about this chilly sport and to discover why the Brits just aren’t warming to it.
“I guess English people haven’t been brought up with it, they can’t appreciate the speed and toughness. They prefer football and faking injuries…” Suggests Paul from Canada, his fake front teeth glinting as he smiles (they were knocked out years ago during a game.) He’s also broken his nose and had stitches, which he assures me is ‘the usual’.
Maybe they’re put off by how dangerous it is? I suggest, whilst managaing to steal flying words from the team who, without warning, throw themselves over the barriers and back on to the ice and into the game every few minutes.
“It is growing in Britain, there just aren’t enough rinks. The town that I’m from in Canada has 200,000 people and there’s forty rinks. In London there’s about four.”
He’s right too, ice rinks are few and far-between in the UK, making Alexander Palace a rare gem in North London. It’s also not really a surprise to find that on the entire rec team they only have one Brit; a lone Scot who, as his teammate’s tease, ‘tried rugby but was too aggressive, so had to join the ice hockey team.’ The rest of The Rangers, to no one’s surprise, is made up of Canadians, with the odd Czech and Norwegian thrown in – cold countries seem to be the theme here.
“There is a league in Australia and in the Middle East – although they’re all full of Canadians too. First they build a rink, then they start a team. We’re not very good brick layers so this one took a while” quips Colin, who has been playing for the London Rangers since 1987.
It seems slightly ironic to me, a lowly English woman who has ice skated for a total of 14 minutes during her lifetime, that the country with the reputation for having the politest people also celebrate one of the most violent sports as their national game. But the fellas on this team just don’t seem like the fighting types.
“There’s a lot of misconceptions about the sport, people think we’re all going to be a bunch of hooligans but I don’t think we are. There’s an old joke that goes: I went to see a fight and a hockey game broke out.”
To support your local team and attend a game for the Haringey Racers go to: Haringey Racers
Photos: Mike Ashdown
Got a supper club, guinea pig cafe, unicorn tears cocktail pop up? Stoke Newington wants it. Luckily a cafe close to Columbia Road has the space you’ve been looking for all along. Probably. Think exposed bricks, boutique lighting and tiled counters, like you’ve just stumbled off a long haul flight and ended up in a trendy Brooklyn coffee house.
“I’m on the veg… of reeeeason” Sang Lady Gaga, whilst cavorting around a staircase in shorts. The very same can be said of Kerb Street Food’s latest event organisers. The amount of quality vegetarian food stalls they’ve gathered together for us is teetering on the unreasonable. It’s not fair on our stomachs, nor on our eyes that are bigger than said stomachs.
What’s it really like to live in North London gem Stroud Green? This short film gives you a glimpse into local life. See if you can spot yourself on Stroud Green's streets; walking your dog, buying bananas from the fruit and veg shop, cheering to a bad joke over a pint outside The Worlds End...
Ever walked past Stokey Town Hall and thought, oh the things I’d do with that space. What would you do exactly, if you had the chance to take over? It’s a question we’ve often asked ourselves. Well now Hackney Council are finally asking us. Residents and business owners in the surrounding areas are being consulted on their draft proposals.
Sadiq Khan’s decision to change London underground announcements from ‘Ladies and Gentlemen’ to gender neutral greetings might have seemed like an obvious, positive step in the right direction. Unfortunately the news was met with some resistance and negativity. Some saw it as an attack against gender, deeming it ‘pathetic’, unnecessary and even ‘demeaning’. Presumably that affectionate term, Snowflake was also bandied around for good measure.
I'd had a bad day, so I thought reading the Slimming World magazine while eating a family-sized bag of crisps would help. This was the day I realised London was ridiculous. And it had rubbed off on me. I started out the day wet. Wet in my cute summer dress with a raincoat on top. It was July, pissing it down. But hot, very hot.
Beyond The Binary is our mini series breaking down gender norms and exploring queer theory through events and interviews. We're kicking things off with an explosion of fashion, identity and expression. This September it’s London Queer Fashion Show. LQFS showcases the greatest new talent from people who know that ‘gender exists beyond the binary’, that clothing doesn't take male or female forms.
Did you know, the recipe is a relatively new invention? Back in the 80s, a soon-to-be infamous supermodel (sorry but it was blats Naomi Campbell) walked into a bar feeling sleepy and sober and in need of a pick me up. Asking notorious and rakish bartender, Dick Bradsell for something that would “wake me up and fuck me up”, she watched him crack his fingers and deftly shake up the tasty Espressotini we all know and regret ordering today when we look at our bank statements the next morning.
This family run restaurant has been sourcing the best of date night seafood the for the last twenty years, sourcing the finest and freshest fish from their very own fishmongers in Stoke Newington. But not only are they super sustainable, these guys are also super on trend with a signature lobster sub. So you can feel posh and down to earth all at once, stroke your beard then passionately get off with an avocado once you’ve finished cycling home on your fixie.
Have you ever sat in the pub with ol Vick and Charlie and whatsherchops and thought, I’d love to draw a nude right now? No? Well what about a neon nude? Yeeah, now you’re keen! Well luckily that tasty Duke of Wellington pub happens to have just the right set up for a life drawing class. Not to mention a fluorescent one. So that is exactly what they do now. Every other Monday Jylle leaves her superb gin and tonic pouring duties to host Neon Naked.
The last time I checked it was March 18th and I was watching someone drink green beer in a big hat and wondering whatever happened to Boxing Day. But someone has informed me that it is August and we need some kind of plan for the month because all logic has flown out the window and nobody knows what anything means anymore and I can’t remember if I had breakfast yesterday no but thanks for asking. Time for some live music to zone out to and tap along blankly while we gather our thoughts.
Haunting melodies, rich ambience and devilish lyrics: indie folk singer Hazel Iris comes to Stokey all the way from California. Joining her is musician Mally Harpaz on accordion, cello, guitar and even percussion to create a pretty special double bill of musical awesomeness together.
I’m Emmie, I'm 24 and from Newcastle. J'adore le foot. Ou est les piscine? I moved to London 6 months ago because 'it's where all the jobs are'. The above new-life-motto was a graffiti tag I saw in my first few days of London life. Capital R and all. I certainly followed through when, that night, I went to a gig and nipped to the loo... Sitting on the uncomfortably warm seat I looked up to see a club night poster advertising: '4 Jägerbombs for £20!'
Who’s Richard Hunt and what are exciting little gimlets when they’re at home? Take a walk down Stoke Newington High Street this month and you’ll find out. An intriguing new cocktail bar and teahouse has opened, calling itself The Mint Gun Club and offering up a three fold menu of teas, cocktails and pantry style food.
If only there was a club night that could tap into that special pre night out time. Or at least play your taste in music, sometimes on repeat. Imagine! Lucky for you musical homebirds, bi-monthly club night Mammory Tapes intent to do just that at VFD in Stokey. All night long you can expect an all girl playlist and the best of your bedroom beats on the dance floor. So get ready to finally showcase your once unseen pyjama/half ready outfit based choreography.
“He said, I know It’s only arctic roll but I like it like it yes I dooooo” Those are the lyrics right? Well this weekend they certainly are, at Kerb’s Guiltiest Pleasure in Kings Cross featuring an arctic roll of pure indulgence. Over Friday 21st and Saturday 22nd July, the street food collective from your wildest dreams are hosting the most indulgent hits from all their pop ups at Granary Square.