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Is It Even a Lesbian Bar If It Doesn’t Have a Pool Table? (with Clare Lydon)

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In ye olden days (ok, like 20 years ago) London used to be full of small neighbourhood queer bars that had more of a community feel than the bigger, anonymous drinking establishments in the West End. And, if it was a lesbian bar you were after then your best bet would be to head to Stoke Newington in the north east of London, which has been described by today’s guest as a ‘lesbian mecca’. 

And, who is today’s guest? Well, it’s none other than lesbian romance novelist Clare Lydon, whose London Romance series has been described as “The L Word, set in London.”, so she knows what she’s talking about when it comes to London and lesbians. 

We caught up to talk about her time living in Stoke Newington, her beloved lost space, Blush Bar, which was open from 1997-2015, and why pool is the sport of choice for so many lesbians. 

To find out more about Clare visit her website where you can download some free stories, and mark your calendar, as Clare’s next book, Big London Dreams, is out on July 28th. 

k: Can we, can we just quickly sidebar and talk about pool for a second? Why, why is it the official sport of lesbians?

Clare: Oh d’you know I don’t know. Um, but you know, I will say that, um, the Catholic church unwittingly trained me to be good at it. So I don’t know if it was their aim, but my, my mum and

k: Did you have a youth club?

Clare: w I did. Yeah. And I was very good. And then my mum and dad would go in the after sort of, um, th there was a club and they would go into this club and then you weren’t allowed in there til you a certain age.

So I was left in this front bit with a pool table. And, and a packet of crisps and a Coke. So, uh, and by the time I was 14, I was, I was winning, you know, I was beating my dad and his mates. Uh, and then, yeah, I’ve won. I have won a pool tournament in my time. So, um, I’m absolutely dreadful at it now, but back in the day I was, you know, it’s, it’s all about practice.

k: Wait, how can you go from being like an, uh, trophy winner to being dreadful? Surely like it’s like riding a bike.

Clare: you really can

k: ah,

Clare: I was shocked. Believe me. I, I think, uh, yeah, I, I can’t remember actually the last time I played pool and I used to play it every single week. Um, but I just, yeah, I think if you, if you, if you don’t use it, you lose it.

k: Ah, for me, pool is a bit like bowling and like, sometimes I’m amazing and sometimes I’m terrible and I just can’t like, there’s just no rhyme or reason.

Clare: Yeah. I can see the, I can see the analogy there actually.

k: So if you go on a date, right, And

you go to a bar with someone, and then you’re like, Hey, why don’t we play pool? What’s your tactic? Do you let them win? Or do you get competitive?

Clare: no, no, no, no. Um, now I am, I’m quite competitive when it comes to pool. So, um, and I have been known to sulk if I lose. So, um, yeah, I wouldn’t let them win.

k: How long does the sulking last

Clare: Until they buy me drink. Obviously now I did once go to a bar, there was, there’s a gay bar in, um, Bethnal Green called Charlie’s Bar. Well, there was probably not there anymore and they used to do free pool on a Monday.

So, um, I remember taking my mate there to play pool and we got, we did eight games in a row with any people in the bar and I beat her at eight nil and, um, I didn’t take pity on her bad me very

k: Needless to say she’s no longer your friend.

Clare: Yeah, no, she hates me now. Okay.

k: Well, and can you explain to me see I never understood this thing where you go and put the money on the table. That’s just to be like, I want to play next.

Clare: Yes. Yeah. That’s just an, an intention that you would like to have the next game, but sometimes it’s winner stays on and that was a bit annoying. Cause you know, I don’t really like playing people. I don’t know.

k: oh, yeah, that is annoying. I see. I hate when I’m playing with someone and then someone else comes and says, we want to use it next. And then they stand there watching you.

Clare: Yeah, that is annoying. And then they get in the way of a particular shot that you’re trying to do.

k: Oh, oh gosh. Yes. Like why is it that some pubs put their pool table in a place where others are like sitting around drinking and you have to be like, oh, sorry. Excuse me. Just going to poke us here anyway. So Blush Bar, why, why did you want to talk about Blush?

Clare: Oh, because I think it’s, I think it was a very amazing space and it was, you know, around quite a- I don’t know. I don’t know if it’s a formative time in my life, but it was a, it was a very happy time in my life. Not that I’m not happy now, but you know what I mean is like, you know, it was. At time, you know, it was in my thirties.

Um, I just moved to Stoke Newington which I’d always wanted to do, like, it was my lifetime’s ambition to me to Stoke Newington, so I’d achieved it. And I thought, well, there’s nothing left to do. And then I found Blush Bar and I thought, wow, I can do karaoke every Friday. I mean, I’m living my dream.

k: Okay. so let’s just back up and unpick some of this life’s ambitions, moving to Stoke Newington. Why?

Clare: Well, I think I read something about it in Diva Magazine. You know, when I was sort of coming out in my late sort of late teens, early twenties, I think I read somewhere that either, either Diva or on that, there internet, if that was around them, I can’t remember, um, that, um, Stoke Newington  was like lesbian Mecca.

It was, it was where all the lesbians lived, like every single one in the whole of London. So there was no, that was just, they were just all just packed into this little space.

k: And every shop sold dungarees.

Clare: of that. Everybody was vegetarian, you know, I was like, damn, I don’t have any

k: a’ plenty.

Clare: Yeah. Yes. So, uh, yeah, I’d always, always just wanted to move, to Stoke Newington.

And then, um, when I, when I moved to London originally, I didn’t live in Stoke Newington I lived in Bethnal Green for five years. And then when my ex-girlfriend and I split up, um, and. Then I thought, where am I going to move to? And I thought, I know I’ll move.to Stoke Newington.

k: Oh, Stoke Newington is just like such a special place in my heart. So I kind of have the opposite. Oh, wait. When I moved to London, I had a friend who lived in Stoke Newington, so just kind of crashed on her couch and then ended up going to live with one of her friends who had a spare room in their place.

And I had no idea that it was lesbian central until I started meeting new people. And they were like, oh, is that where all the lesbians live? And I was like, oh, I’ve made it. I’ve made it. This is amazing.

Clare: see it and it, it was all true actually. Well kind of when I got there, uh, because. You know, if you say it now, it sounds crazy. Cause you know, all the, all the gay bars and queer bars are shut down and there aren’t very many anywhere anymore. Um, but at, in that time there was three full time lesbian bars.

So I did think when I arrived there, this is the place to be.

k: You can bar hop and everything.

Clare: Yes.

k: if karaoke gets too much.

Clare: Which it never does.

k: and so when, when was this then?

Clare: Um, so I moved to Stoke Newington in now… oh. You asked me to go back and do maths. I’m interested in, in 2003. Um, so yeah, and then I lived there until 2011. So I lived there for eight years. Is that right? Eight years. Yeah. Um, so, um, before I, before Blush, I should say there was Due South. So Due South was, um, run by Siobhan and Eulanda and, and that was.

That was like the first, um, lesbian bar I went to in Stoke Newington. And so that holds a special place in my heart as well. And then when that shut down, Siobhan opened Blush and Eulanda open the Y Bar which was on Essex Road just by Essex Road station in Islington. So, um, yeah. So Due South sadly shut, but its spirit lived on in Blush and the Y Bar.

k: um, so at this time in your life, when you just moved to Stoke Newington, you’ve just finished a relationship. Was that kind

Clare: Hmm,

k: was that traumatic?

Clare: was it? It was, well, you know, it was one of those, um, relationships where, uh, it was, it was coming to an end, shall we say so? Yes. Yes. In a way it was traumatic because it was five years five-year relationship. However, it was kind of. You know, at the end. So it was,

k: the time.

Clare: was good for me to make a break and move from Bethnal Green and then move to Stoke Newington and it kind of felt like that was where I should have been when I was living in London.

Anyway. So when I moved there, I was like, okay, this is, this is the start of a new chapter. And this is the one that I’m, you know, in control of on my own. So yeah, so it was a sad time, but also it was an exciting time as well, I think. And then, you know,

k: Uh, well, it’s like that thing that people talk about London, like it takes a few years to figure out London, doesn’t it? Like you could be here for a number of years and suddenly you move house to a different part of the city. And you’re like, oh wow, everything makes sense. Like I get why people love London now suddenly.

Clare: Yeah. I mean, I, I mean, I, I did, I had a good time in Bethnal Green. I really did like it and I’ve got mates. Good, good friends. He lived in Bethnal Green now. So I love going back then. And that’s actually, I remember when I lived there. Um, when I moved to London in 90, in 98, and everyone said to me, well, Beth, Bethnal Green’s up and coming, and, and it was up and coming  for years, it’s finally come a little bit, you know, it’s got some cool bars there now, but they weren’t there when I lived there.

Um, but you know, I did enjoy Bethnal. I had, um, I always loved living in London. Like, you know, I’m from Essex and ever since I was a kid, I always wanted to live in London. So, but I think that. Always my heart wanted to be in Stoke Newington  and so, yeah, it was good when I finally got there.

k: why, why did you always want to live in London?

Clare: I think I just always want it to live. I like cities. I, I like the hustle and bustle of a city. Um, and I think I was always just fascinated with London even, uh, even as a kid. And I think as well, that some little part of me, uh, both my parents lived in London and they met in London. So. Um, even though neither of them were born in London, they both grew up here.

So I had some affinity to it, you know, I would just come up and see family here, but I never wanted to live exactly where they lived. I wanted to live where I want to live. So, and I think it’s nice for me, you know, like my, my family is still in Essex, so it’s, it’s not too far away, but it’s far enough away, I would say.

k: Far enough away say no more. Um, so then moving to Stoke Newington and, and, you know, having just left this relationship was the plan to be like, I’m going to be as sociable as possible. I’m going to go out and meet all of the lesbians of the, of the borough.

Clare: Yes, that was the plan.

k: Yeah. So Blush bar, do you remember the first time you went there?

Clare: Do I remember the first time as Pulp once said, uh, do you know what I’m not sure I do, but I do remember. Maybe I do, actually, I don’t exactly remember the night, but I do remember kind of walking up there and, um, and it always seemed to have some, um, intimidating lesbians hanging out in front of it, um, smoking.

And if you didn’t know, you know them, uh, you might be intimidated by them I remember being slightly intimidated, um, a couple of times, but then, you know, then I got to know everyone in there and then you’d walk up and everyone would say, hi Claire. Hi. I

k: hang on, hang on, hang on, hang on. What, what makes them intimidating?

Clare: Um, just because they were, uh, they were outside and I wanted to go in, so it was just, you know, there’s nothing particularly intimidating about that. It was just you, that you’d be eyed up as you went in. So it was just like, oh, you know?

k: Oh, I got ya. The threat of being perceived.

Clare: Yeah, maybe that was it. I don’t think that that is ever. That ever leaves going into queer spaces.

k: No.

Clare: Like, I think you want to put your best foot forward, you know what I mean? And, uh, but yeah, um, soon that went and then, then after quite a few times going then everyone knew who you were. And I think that was part of the draw of Blush as well, was that I knew everybody who worked on the bar.

Um, and we knew most of the people in there, um, after, you know, going there numerous times, then you just go there on a Friday of karaoke, but that was. Um, a typical Friday night.

k: So you’ve just said, we knew everyone in there.

Clare: All right. Yeah.

k: Is that

Clare: So we, so when I, when I moved to Stoke Newington, we, I started going out with, um, like we had this group of friends and we used to meet every Thursday at Tonic for drinks and pool and stuff. Um, you know, proper lesbian activities. Um, and then, um, and then. Yeah. And then I think about a year later I started, um, I started seeing someone who then, um, became my wife.

So, so that’s lovely. So, uh, yeah, so, but I, I think the, we probably refers to me and her, but also the group of friends that I had at that time, we were still my friends, but, you know, we, we’ve all sort of dispersed away from Stoke Newington now, but at that time, um, we went to blush quite often.

k: so let’s talk about then. So after you’d been there the first time and after you’d started going there and you, um, kind of became one of the crew, um, there is something really nice about everyone knowing who you are, but then there’s also something. A bit annoying as well. Like you can’t really embarrass yourself

Clare: Um, no, I think Blush was an embarrassment free zone.

k: because no one had any shame or.

Clare: No. Yeah, it was, it was shameless. It was, uh, it came with the territory. I mean, it was very much a. It was quite a small-ish crowd of people that went in there. Um, but loved it and kept it afloat. I think. So, you know, we would go in there, um, for an after work drink, like, um, during the week or we would go definitely going there on a, on a Friday for karaoke.

Um, sometimes it would be a stop on a Saturday. We were going down like new year. I loved it on new year. Cause it was just a low-key new year. You didn’t have to book. Um, you always knew that. You know, you’d get chatting with people. I think that’s the other thing about it was that it was very welcoming to people.

I always thought anyway, who weren’t locals. And then it would say small that you always got chatting to people.

k: see, that’s it like, like having a bar where you go and everyone knows you. I hate that. I love to just be really anonymous and like not know anyone.

Clare: I see. I mean, I do like that in a city, which is why I love cities. Uh, I know I. I love living in London for that reason. But I think when I go to a bar and I go to a restaurant, it’s really nice when people know you. Um, w we went to Prefix in Soho, uh, recently, and haven’t been there since the lockdown and I’m a regular there.

Uh, but then they remembered me. So that’s nice.

k: Oh, I was that’s nice. But then see, like, so I don’t mind that if they are like, oh Yeah.

hi. Um, and then they like demonstrate some kind of knowledge that they know you, but it’s when they like, want to talk to you. That’s when it gets annoying. Okay.

Clare: Yeah.

k: Have you ever been to a restaurant where the, like the owner or the like head maitre D or whatever, pulls up a chair and sits with you?

Clare: Yeah. That’s a little bit

k: it’s horrible. It’s just like, why would you do that?

Clare: Yeah.

k: Oh, and then like, you know, they they’ve got control over what goes in your food. So you can’t do anything. You can’t say like, can you, can you just not talk to me? You just have to kind of like style it out and seem interested. It’s horrible. Anyway, that’s my issue.

Not your issue.

Clare: it was also a bit of argy bargy, um, which, which comes with the territory, um, when there’s

k: argy bargy for me.

Clare: Uh, how do I, how do I put this? You know, w w where a bit of alcohol is being consumed, and, um, maybe, maybe somebody doesn’t like the way you walk past them or looked at them, then they might get a bit aggro with you.

So, uh, but I never got, I never particularly gotten, I’m not, uh, I’m not, I’m a lover a fighter, so I don’t, I’m doing get into fights. I run from fights. Yeah.

k: Unless pool’s involved, right.

Clare: Yeah. Now I’m just like put, put the sticks down or run. Um, but then there was the odd, the odd flare up in Blush, but, um, we’ve got, I’ve got some good friends who are very good at diffusing the situation.

And my wife is also very good at diffusing. Say, um, I just take a step back.

k: Uh,

Clare: I was just thinking actually earlier that I did actually, uh, do the entry for Blush on fancyapint.com. So I used to, I used to write little pub reviews for them. So I was looking at it to see if it was still going. But I do think it is because my internet kept crashing.

So,

k: oh,

Clare: um, I know that one night I went in there and, uh, and Siobhan was really happy that she was on fancyapint.com. Cause in that. In that era, in that era, I, she says like, it’s like 2000 years ago, um, at that time, fancyapint was quite a big website and not the, probably like the only website that listed pubs.

So she says, oh, you know, I we’ve had a really good review on fancyapint. And I said, yeah, that was me. So then she gave me a free pint. So

k: Oh, okay. Oh, so she wasn’t like crestfallen, like, oh, it’s just, you.

Clare: No, no, it was just basically, um, A friend of a friend of mine knew the person that ran fancyapint. And I went out with them for a drink and I said to them, oh, I could do a few bars around Stoke Newington if you’d like, and then they said, yeah, that’d be great. So I did, I probably did about 10 or 20 bars around Stoke Newington..

So I put all the lesbian bars on there.

k: of course, of course. So I haven’t been able to find the fancyapint reviews, but I found Yelp and there’s one here from Catherine. Am I able to read it out to you and see if you agree with what she said?

Clare: Go on then..

k: So she only gave Blush three stars. It’s not fair. Um,

Clare: what are you thinking?

k: Yeah. Um, it’s small ground floor bar betrays, the extent of the sizable basement area, which includes a pool table and access to a fair size concrete, but beer garden.

It’s not really the kind of place you’d go for a boogie who says boogie? But it’s perfect for a drink with your friends or other half any day of the week. And it’s especially worth a visit on Wednesday for their great pub quiz. So do you agree with Catherine.

Clare: Um, Well, I wouldn’t give it three stars, obviously on my fancyapint rating, I gave it five. And I also said it’s got the coldest beer in, in London, which it did, um, which is why I always blamed it for making me drink too much of, of said cold beer. Um, but I know that, um, Siobhan who ran, it was fastidious with her cleaning of her pipes and her temperature of her beer.

And, um, it really was fantastic beer in there. She was great.

k: Yeah, it’s weird that Catherine’s given it three out of five when she’s not said anything negative about it.

Clare: See, I don’t think Catherine has been there on a Friday of karaoke. She she’s more than a Wednesday quiz girl.

k: Yeah.

Clare: I’m not I’m I’m not a quiz person, so I never went on a,

k: Oh, okay. So Catherine, you know, we just don’t trust Catherine whatsoever.

Clare: sorry. I’m sorry, Catherine.

k: Fiona has said it’s the sort of place you could be very comfortable, even if you’re on your own. And wait, wait for it. Friday is karaoke night and depending on the crowd can be great fun. All are welcomed and clapped for their effort.

Oh, that’s

Clare: There you go.Fiona  got it. In fact, a friend of ours used to literally live in a flat across the road from Blush. And, um, she said, she said she could time her Friday nights for when she heard me singing Teenage, Dirtbag from the flat over road,

k: So, and what do you think London has lost since losing Blush

Clare: Oh, it’s lost so much. Um, it’s funny, isn’t it? Cause when I left that, when we left Stoke Newington in 2011, I was sad to leave, but it kind of like, it was the end of a time of life. And I think Blush was a time of life. Having said that I do think I would still go there quite often if I lived around the corner and it was still there, cause I still liked going to the pub.

Um, and it was just nice to have a bar that was a lesbian bar, um, or welcome to everyone, say a queer bar. Um, and you know, that did karaoke and it, and it was just local and you know, and everyone I knew don’t like, I do have that now we live in Greenwich now. And um, you know, there are pubs around where.

The people working there know us, but it’s not the same as that. So I would still go, but it was, but it was definitely a time of life where I was going to pubs more. Um, and so, and I’ve forgotten the question.

k: So what

Clare: Well, what would Blush?

k: now? Why is it not the same in Greenwich?

Clare: Um, no, it just means it’s not that it’s not the same as going to, to a, to a gay bar, I suppose. Um, that’s slightly different and it’s a slightly different vibe. Isn’t it? In a gay bar to, to a normal, a normal bar. She says commas. Um,

k: they said we have to, like, we have to collectively come up with a word because I’m not comfortable calling it a straight bar. Cause it’s not a straight bar, but it’s also like, it’s not.

Clare: And normal a normal is no good,

k: no normal. I don’t like that word, like, uh, uh, common. no. don’t want to say common. Hmm. Anyway, had non sexuality.

Clare: job?

k: I’m on a never-ending quest listeners. If you’ve got any suggestions, get in touch. Uh, but, so what do you think it is then?

Clare: I think it’s probably just, I think it’s having a space that having a space where you’re seen isn’t it. Um, and having a space where everybody’s everybody’s. It’s it’s just this slight indefinable thing, isn’t it? The, yeah, I guess it’s just being seen and identified and being welcomed,  and, and just relaxing.

Whereas you can’t, you don’t do that as much. I mean, like, you know, we’ve got some lovely bars here in Greenwich and I wouldn’t say that I’m on, I wouldn’t say, um, you know, tense anytime I’m in them and I’m not on tenter hooks, but, but it’s. It’s uh, it’s just that sort of indefinable, that sort of one sort of, I don’t know, not 1% that extra 5% of safety,

k: well it’s well, it’s that thing, isn’t it? When you’re a minority and you are trained to scan the room every time you enter a room to see if there’s anyone who’s going to have a problem with you. And it’s just yeah. Using up that CPU, that part of your brain to, to be like is there anyone here who has a problem with me?

And then five minutes later, there’s new people in here. Do they have a problem with me? Yeah.

It’s that? Not having to do that?

Clare: Yeah, no, definitely that. Um, so, but strangely we do, we do have two gay bars in Greenwich, so that’s nice. Uh, but, um, but no lesbian bar and no pool table in any of them say, you know,

k: they don’t even want your custom do they, they just don’t care about lesbians. So back to that question then I suppose like in particular, lesbian bars are disappearing. Um, so maybe this question is more about lesbian bars in general, rather than specifically about Blush, but what what does London lose when it loses them?

Yeah.

Clare: Uh, it loses it loses. Its Identity, somewhat of the, or the identity of the people who would identify wow. I’m using identifying that identity in the sentence or a lot. But, um, I think, you know, as you say, as we said, it’s just losing a safe space. It’s losing a destination, uh, for people to come together and, and just be themselves.

Um, and, and, and I think the, the bigger bars. The sort of the more well-known bars i, I never S I never was as, um, comfortable in them, I suppose, uh, for some reason, but, but I much prefer, but probably because I’m an introvert. Um, and I much preferred the more neighborhood bars, which Blush was. Um, and Stoke Newington as, as we said, had, uh, had, uh, a multitude of them.

Um, and so, you know, that was very lucky at that time to be there. Um, But yeah, I think all the ones in town in central London, in town, you know, there’s, we’ve, I think we’ve lost most of them there. We lost the Candy Bar, which I never thought would go, but it did. Um, and you know, I think there’s any Ku Bar  now.

Is it Ku Bar downstairs. Last time I was in there, there was a massive fight.

k: So you just left.

Clare: Um, I think we’ve lost so much and it’s not just lesbian. bars in, in central London, we’ve lost so many. Different gay bars, but I don’t know if it’s just, that’s just times change and culture changes and that could be just me being nostalgic. I’m not sure.

k: Yeah. It’s tough to know. I guess that’s what we’re trying to answer with this. We, I don’t know why I said we were, I’m trying to answer in part with this podcast is like, are they still relevant? And it’s hard to know.

Clare: Yeah. It’s hard to know. Um, and I suppose I think. As you get out, as you get older, you do go out to pubs less I’ve I think I get to restaurants more now than pubs or restaurants more than bars, but, uh, say, I guess it’s more pertinent to ask people who, who will be going out and meeting people now and meeting, meeting people to get together, gather with me mates.

Um, those interactions won’t take place because those spaces aren’t there. So, but there are different. Things that popped up on there, you know, apps and things to take their place. So it’s, is it just a different time? I don’t know. I, I I’m I’m of the generation that we, it says that, you know, meeting in person, there’s no substitute for that, but maybe that

k: Mm, there’s all these other factors as well. So like, uh, I hate it, but let’s talk about Millennials and Gen Z and Gen X and whatever, but, um, one of the identifying characteristics, if you will, of Gen Z, is that they don’t drink as much. And they’re also not having as much sex, which I just find really weird given that like all those apps out there where you can get sex really easily.

And so like, A traditional bar doesn’t it doesn’t meet the needs of that clientele as much.

Clare: Yeah, that is another fact, I guess it’s it was very much, yeah, it was going out drinking and. Yeah, meeting people and you know, snogging them on the dance floor was very much part of my being, living in London. So, um, yeah, it was it’s but, but I’m sad that that’s not

k: um, yeah, and like it’s, uh, it’s the only way that bars can be viable is by selling alcohol because that’s where they can make the most profit. So if those spaces exist, but they’re selling less alcohol, there’s suddenly not washing their own face.

Clare: Yeah, this is true. We need, um, we need queer bubble tea bars. Clearly

k: Ooh. Is there a big markup on bubble tea?

Clare: I must be right. 4, 4, 4 quid, a pop I’m like four pounds.

k: Oh, I don’t think I’ve had bubble tea in a very long time.

Clare: It’s not for me,

k: Okay. Well, I’ll open a lesbian bubble tea bar.

Clare: if he could, that would be

k: I will need 10 pool tables.

Clare: 10 pool tables. And, um, can you serve me beer under the bar?

k: Okay. Sure, sure.

Clare: but bubbly beer.

k: Yeah. So let’s go into the cheesy part of their, um, interview. If you could describe Blush Bar in five words, what would they be?

Clare: Oh, um, okay. All the words have fled my brain who wouldn’t think I’m a writer. Would you?

k: Oh, I should really tell people that advance about this question.

Clare: Okay? I’ve got it. I’m going back to my fancyapint review ‘Coldest beer in north London’.

k: no Northland. that’s five words I had to count it. Um, and if you could go back in time and talk to yourself when, uh, you just split up from your partner and just moved to Stoke Newington, and we’re just starting to explore this new world in front of you. What advice would you give yourself?

Clare: Um, I think, I think I would say. I’m trying. I think I did. Okay. Actually, I think, I think I, wasn’t trying to think, would I say to myself, um, you know, go out more, uh, don’t snog that woman, but I, I think I did. Okay. I’m using the word snog very quite a lot, which is making me smile. Um, it’s not normal.

k: Is this the title of your next book

Clare: yes, it should be right.

Snog Mary, avoid something like that.

that

k: Snogging on the dance floor?

Clare: don’t snog her.

k: Don’t snog her.

Clare: Yes. Brilliant. Um, I think I would say, uh, yeah, just, just carry on as you are and, uh, explore all those, uh, bars and women and, uh, buy that flat.

k: Giving yourself real estate advice. Yeah.

Clare: Yes.







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