We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

God that was close

I am still feeling pretty shaky after what happened this morning. I was on the Central Line tube train and got off at St Paul’s at 08:45, just two stops before Liverpool Street station, near where one of the attacks took place. Like most Londoners I will be walking into work tomorrow. Many will stay at home, advised to do so by the police and their own employers. I regularly use the King’s Cross tube station and may want to give the underground metro system a miss for a while.

The atmosphere is pretty strange this evening. As I walked along the River Thames on my way home I noticed a lot of pubs were packed, as people no doubt wanted a drink and a chat and see a friendly face. Traffic is way down, but there are still lots of police cars, ambulances and unmarked cars with blue flashing lights zooming about. Most people I see appear calm and pretty resilient about it all. I suppose it will take a while for things to sink in.

Mobile phones were knocked out, and I was not able to get in touch with my other half, my family or friends for several hours. The Internet has worked well.

No doubt much ink is going to be spilled in the next few days about the ramifications, the likely political fallout, the civil liberties implications, and all the other stuff we scribble about. All I want to add now is my condolences to those who have lost loved ones or been injured in these terrible attacks. And spare a thought for the doctors, nurses and other emergency workers dealing with the human wreckage caused by these scum.

19 comments to God that was close

  • Tom


    Thank goodness you are alright. My sympathy to all of you, and especially the killed, wounded, and their families and friends.

    Rest tonight. To work tomorrow.

  • Adriane

    Take care. Everybody just take care.

  • I am so very glad Rob, my bandmate is off in Alaska, he would have been close as well. I am very relieved to hear you are in one piece mate…

  • Jonathan, I am so glad you are fine. I heard the news while driving, and went to my PC as soon as I got home to check on all of you guys. I am so pissed off at those creeps.

  • martin

    “spare a thought for the doctors, nurses and other emergency workers dealing with the human wreckage caused by these scum”

    absolutely – and ditto the bus and tube drivers who are on the front line every day

  • steves

    No longer in a position to tavel to London every weerk, but my last job involved weekly visits through Kings Cross into Baker Street.

    Now may not be the time to move on but I feel I should travel down tomorow just to show the scum that they will not succeed.

  • Johnathan

    BTW, be vigilant. Keep eyes and ears open, folks. Anything that you think looks suspicious, report it. We are in this together.

  • Johnny Drongo

    July 7 = 7/7
    “Culture’s second single, “Two Sevens Clash,” would title the album and provide its focal point. The song swept across the island like a wildfire, its power fed by
    the apocalyptic fever that held the island in its
    clutches throughout late 1976 and into 1977.
    (Rastafarians believed the apocalypse would begin when the two sevens clashed, with July 7th, 1977)

  • Steph

    My sympathy to all. Take care of yourselves.

    My thoughts are at


  • I’m totally in shock. My heart goes out to everyone in London and Great Britain.

  • J Kim

    I got off at Liverpool Street Station at 8:48am, annoyed that I would be late for work.

    And then the alarms started ringing and I just assumed another person had committed suicide on the railway tracks.

    Condolences to everyone who suffered, in one way or another. Even walking on the streets of London was poignant, everyone was walking home quietly, reassuring relatives and friends that they were alive.

  • Tim Sturm

    I recently started cycling in to work so missed all the chaos on the Tubes. Glad to hear all the Samizdatistas appear to be OK.

  • David Mercer

    Johnathan, very glad to hear that you and all the other Samizdatans in and around London appear to be ok, and our condolences to those who are not.

    May the perpetrators shortly join the “are not” category. Here’s (for the first time publically posted) my wifes artistic reaction to these events:

    She’s licensed it under an ‘any non-commercial use’ creative commons license, so copy/post that one anywhere you’d like!

    All the best from The States,

    David Mercer
    (art by Alexis Weiss and David Mercer)

  • The Wobbly Guy

    Mercer-Nice poster!

    I read rumors of delayed-timer bombs meant to take out emergency services personnel. Any truth to these?


  • Strophyx

    Don’t know if it was done here, but it’s become a rather standard tactic. Set a bomb to attract emergency services personnel and the press, then after a suitable delay detonate a larger bomb targeting those responding to the first.

    I’m glad to read that you all seem to have escaped physically unharmed. You’ll probably discover that your body reacts very similarly to the delayed-timer bombs mentioned. My most recent experience with this was after 9/11. The day before I had driven my wife to Boston’s Logan airport and put her on a business flight to Los Angeles, which the next day became the first plane to be crashed into the World Trade Center. I didn’t have any emotional reaction at the time, but more than made up for it several days later.

  • David Mercer

    She’s selling t-shirts of that graphic here.

    Print them out yerself if ya want, that’s covered by the license!

  • Matt O'Halloran

    I assume the slogan on that T shirt is complaining about airport security personnel strip-searching white grannies while letting swarthy guys in sunglasses walk– because we must be “multicultural” in our security surveillance tactics, mustn’t we?

  • David Mercer

    The sentiment is best described as “while we may have had our squabbles over the Centuries, never forget that the American Revolution was fought to Secure the Rights of Englishmen for those in the Colonies”.

    And they fucked with the Motherland today, and Uncle Sam is pissed. That’s roughly how my wife put it as she made it.

    Oh and the real link if anyone wants a shirt or poster of that is http://www.cafepress.com/dmwmm
    I jacked it up before (argh, cafepress.com converted my url to lowercase on me).

  • Actually it was a great day for mobile phone operators-the traffic on their networks was immense, which economically is always good news. In addition, the mobile phone operators were able to institute emergency measures, giving priority SIM card holders (those in emergency services) priority, which I think is a fantastic move. It meant my phone calls worked about every sixth attempt and some SMSes took a while to come in, but once I had news from all of my family, friends and colleagues I felt it was a sacrifice I was naturally ready to give. I know the fixed line phones also got a workout as people rang their loved ones.

    I’m glad you’re ok. I stayed home yesterday, and am glad I did.