Tuesday, 28 October 2008

November First Sunday and Beyond

Dear friends, flanuers and fellow loiterers

Lot's going on this month, i hope some of this hits the spot that x marks on your personal map...
November 1st Sunday Come and celebrate All Souls' Day, the feast of the faithful departed and a belated Samhain with the LRM.

We'll search Manchester for traces of the King of Witches, listen to the whisper of ghosts beneath the pavement and share Dee-lightful stories of our favourite Elizabethan alchemist. Be prepared for a few ghoulish surprises, magical street art and some spectral silliness too...All welcome to join us, but kids must bring an adult with them.

The drift will last approx 2 hours so please dress appropriately (zombies and vampires will get a special treat), bring an open mind and sensible shoes and remember to take care when crossing roads - we don't want any new departures.

Meeting point is 2pm Sunday 2nd November in the downstairs bar at the Cornerhouse Oxford Road, if you're feeling shy please feel free to get in touch first, otherwise look for the short lass with pink hairThis Thursday - special guests being inducted into the LRM world

This Thursday evening, 30th November I am very excited to be meeting with members of Antwerpen Averechts http://translate.google.co.uk/translathl=en&sl=nl&u=http://www.antwerpenaverechts.be/&sa=X&oi=translate&resnum=1&ct=result&prev=/search%3Fq%3Dantwerpen%2Baverechts%26hl%3Den%26sa%3DX (excuse the very long link, I'm assuming everyone else is as ignorant at languages as I am)

Antwerp counterproductive organizes tours about their city today but with an eye to the city yesterday and tomorrow which they say are (and I love this phrase) Critical but with a warm heart for the city and its inhabitants.

I'll be talking about the LRM and then we will be exploring public space and how it feels in the dark. If anyone wants to join us that would be splendid – please email or phone me for details as the meeting points a wee bit sketchy but it will be 7-9pmish and end somewhere warm for a chat and a drink.

I'd really appreciate your support and will furnish you with the beverage of your choice. They are particularly interested in guerrilla gardening if anyone knows anything about that hem hem.

There will be another moonlight derive, general social and chance to plan future shenanigans on November 25th 6pm onwards - more details to follow but just to prove I do listen to those who can't come out to play on First Sunday or indeed in daylight

We now have some LRM (un)business cards to give out - so when loiterers meet curious bystanders they can invite them along, although please be respectful and remember they are not get out of jail free cards. It is an offense to flyer in the city centre without a permit.

Finally I heartily recommend going to Cube to discover How Yellow is Manchester? http://www.cube.org.uk/exhibitions/detail.asp?id=189

Please forward this as you see fit, also apologies if you don't want it or only get it too late, the email list is still a bit messy but some kind folk have offered to help and I promise to fix it very soon

Thanks as ever for your interest, insights and inspiration

glittery love and toffee apples

Morag x

PS The LRM has always aimed to be an international network and we now have loiterers across several continents – so we're planning a synchronized something for Decembers 1st Sunday…. If you are loitering anywhere outside Manchester, from Altrincham to Antarctica and fancy taking part in our biggest experiment yet please let me know. Contact details as ever are email loiter@hepzombie.co.uk phone 07974929589 website www.nowhere-fest.blogspot.com or join the facebook group

Sunday, 26 October 2008

November 1st Sunday

Come and celebrate All Souls' Day, the feast of the faithful departed and a belated Samhain with the LRM.

We'll search manchester for traces od the King of Witches, listen to the whisper of ghosts beneath the pavement and share Dee-lightful stories of our favourite Elizabethan alchemsit. Be prepared for a few ghoulish suprises, magical street art and some spectral silliness too...

All welcome to join us, (kids must bring an adult with them) The drift will last approx 2 hours so please dress appropriately (zombies and vampires will get a special treat), bring an open mind and sensible shoes and remember to take care when crossing roads - we don't want any new departures.

Meeting point is 2pm Sunday 2nd November in the downstairs bar at the cornerhouse, if you're feeling shy please feel free to call or email first, otherwise look for the short lass with pink hair

glittery love and toffee apples

Morag x

PS I finally have some LRM (un)business cards to give out too - so when we meet curious bystamders we can invite them along. Oh and I hope everyone notices this is A FULL WEEK in advance - yes, this month I actually saw first sunday coming!

Thursday, 23 October 2008

another clue

in the mystery photo quiz (scroll down for the details) becuase i don't want to give an unfair advantage to facebook members....

the bench you seek is within sight of, and roughly eqidistance between, what some loiterers call Satans Tower and the place where evil wailings (or top pop hits depending on if you agree with the dionysian or not) were recorded in manchester

i'll post another picture which will probably give the game away... x

Sunday, 12 October 2008

free spaces

Tuesday night there is a meeting about the future (or not) of The Basement Social Centre Collective Thats 14th October at the Friends Meeting House (Mount Street) 6-8pm (becuase 24 lever street is still closed post fire and flood)

a chance to find out whats happening with the basement collective, think about whether manchester wants or needs another social centre and find out what everyone has been up to since the fire last year please come along, share your thoughts and help shape the future. If you can;t make it but have something to say please email mustsocial@yahoo.co.uk

I won't witter on again about the place but heres a poem by Chloe Poems

Jigsaw puzzle of afterthought
And heartfelt pieces
Misfits fit and click into
Each other's pictures.
The cautious tread careful
As the gregarious dismount their politics
Rogue riders and bicycle cops
Dust dirt and gravel.
Ideas are flown like kites and happen.
It's where Carol Batton Tickertapes
And decorates with poetry.
Bookshop like a clam twitching on
A seabed of radical oratory.
Performance space speculates
"Whatever next?"
Held together by blutack
And hope.
Moth-eaten northern nirvana
Of atheist blessed anarchy
A hidey-hole
A headquarters
A honeycomb
A home

Yesterday was International Action Day "Freedom not fear - Stop the surveillance mania!" http://www.vorratsdatenspeicherung.de/content/view/242/144/
which I'm sorry passed me by. By coincidence I was in Liverpool to look at art but it felt shallow as i walked down church street and saw police arresting people for the audacity of having an information stall in a public space and talking about freedom of speech. Scarey. More details when i have them. I did Richard Wilsons Tuning The Place Over - best bit of public art I've seen in a long time

Love Morag x

Ps this is lovely and very inspiring: power and love to the climate rushers www.climaterush.co.uk

Friday, 10 October 2008

a treasure trove amidst some meanderings

I bloody love the LRM. It’s a real privilege to meet so many great people and experience our city in so many ways. This year its felt like loitering has really gathered pace (which is an oxymoron but I hope you know what I mean) and I feel a gentle glow of what I think might be pride mingled with all the glorious possibilities that lay ahead.

I was, frankly and delightfully bamboozled by the number of folk who turned out last Sunday. Thank you one and all! Drifting about together felt very special, I heard some great stories and it reminded me of the power a group has to push boundaries, open doors and become greater than its individual components.

However, sometime I worry there’s a tendency to see First Sunday as something extraordinary – which it is and paradoxically it isn’t. Please remember loitering is a state of mind that can be enjoyed any day and any where and to assume The LRM expedition is the only true derive would be very wrong. The city holds a multitude of tales and no one can know them all.

Solo or duo loitering has its own intense pleasures – a different power comes from inconspiousness, independence and quiet contemplation. It can transform even the most mundane commute into an adventure.

So what makes a loiter? I think it’s an insatiable curiosity and an open mind. Loitering is about looking for the details, the buried treasure, the interesting detrius; it’s listening to echoes and whispers and ghosts and songbirds and its asking the unanswerable questions. Where am i? How did I get here? Where am I going? Who built this place? Why? What’s it for? Who is here – and who is not? What kind of imagination built it and how can it evolve? What signs and wonders have been left here? Perhaps most importantly how does it make me feel?

I was pondering all this on Monday as I enjoyed the iridescent autumnal air and a few moments peace in the city. I was thrilled to spot an apple tree laden with fruit intertwined with rosehips very close to the bustle of big business.

Foraging for food and making art from found objects are key to the loitering way of life. Apples are of special significance because if there is a patron deity of the LRM it must surely be our lady dischordia HAIL ERIS! Seek out the golden apple… This one wasn’t golden but it did look delicious and tantalisingly just out of reach (ah! The story of my life!)

I knew I would never devour it because it was so perfect and I dare not risk the dangerous climb. I merely sat for a moment to reflect on the fruits beauty. Handily the tree was positioned close to a bench; as I sat down I saw the bench had a very peculiar plaque on it. I can’t pretend to decipher the meaning of its inscription but it sounds vaguely smutty and made me laugh out loud for the sheer joy of our wonderful city.

A special prize is on offer to the first person who can tell me the location of the bench and another for anyone who knows the story of the plaque. If the riddle remains unanswered I will post more clues but with each clue the prize diminishes….

Merry puzzling and an even merrier weekend
Morag x

Some things for the weekend

A couple of beautiful online maps, I love the idea of rainy city stories ‘an interactive literary cityscape that enables you to click on a location in Manchester and read a story or poem set there’ http://www.rainycitystories.com/ I suspect I will be whiling away many an hour in its company

There’s a lot of LRM friendly art in Manchester at the moment – The Castlefield Gallery is hosting KISSS The Kinship International Strategy on Surveillance and Suppression which includes some gems, especially amongst the films you can choose from, although I found some of the work a little trite

http://www.cube.org.uk/ has information about a forthcoming show and critical walking tour asking how yellow is Manchester. Sounds intriguing!

I also wanted to share the blogs of a couple of loiterers who also happen to be fascinating people, clever blokes and really interesting writers.


Remember: boredom is counter revoluntionary and thinking is sexy

Monday, 6 October 2008

i spy

This is the text Alan distributed yesterday, which he produced with thanks to Wrights & Sights www.mis-guide.com who do some lovely stuff - the misguide to exeter is something to treasure. Anyhow, cheers to them and to Alan

In a climate of concern some of the LRM’s activities could be interpreted as activities one might expect of a spy, an undercover agent or a conspirator. Since 9/11, 7/7 and other worldwide incidents, notices have appeared in the media and public spaces cautioning people to be wary of unusual behaviour. Indeed some of this advice could be adopted as pure psychogeography in that there is encouragement to view the ordinary as potentially extraordinary.

The kaleidoscopic unsettling of the sense comes rapidly once we move from the passive gaze of the tourist to the intrusive, naughty, performative and inquisitive behaviour of the psychogeographer. To break the pattern of moving in a functional manner through the urban environment is to suddenly feel vulnerable to and free from the laws, lores and regulations of place. This sense can be uncomfortably heightened when one considers the obsessions and prohibitions built around the idea of property, race, sovereignty and security.

Some of the derives the LRM carry out may lead the walker to edges and edgelands that are assumed to be invisible, un-navigable, and beyond the expected daily itinerary of both local and tourist. Every city has its secrets and hush zones, ambient hubs, invisible boundaries, strategically sensitive installations and buildings that we may chance upon by running counter to the expected behaviour of the crowd. On the one hand, heightened perceptions may be to our benefit in an awareness of potential dangers and enjoyments, but on the other hand, we may, by degrees, become fearless and more able to take an unexpected detour down an alleyway or through a dark doorway. And in so doing, our activities, if observed by police, security guard or concerned member of the public may be misconstrued. Something as simple as entering a shop with no intention to buy could rouse suspicion, could lead to a supposition that the drifter is a thief.

The very activities we are promoting as ways of re-seeing the world could be, for all we know, the kinds of methodologies being suggested by more covert, formal or informal militaristic groups. The right to roam where you wish will be different in different contexts of time, place and recent history. It leads us to consider ways in which we may become more aware of these concerns and thus more critically engaged in issues of society, security, human rights and freedom, as if, in some utopian manner, the LRM’s activities may lead to artistic activism that may in some ways influence the story of the city and even the planet.

With fear and terror on the wind and in the streets, we may need to face that alleyway and dark doorway in a different manner. As Bertolt Becht said, “Change the World, it needs it.”

Piccies from Yesterday

Hello darlings,

The photos I took from yesterday's dérive are now up on our Flickr group.

You can find them HERE! Feel free to add your own.

The picture below, though, deserves far better exposure than just a Flickr group.

Love (after a thump from Morag),

Wednesday, 1 October 2008


to paul v for the picture in the last post. what a cheery sight!

October news

Dear friends and fellow loiterers

I hope you are well and happy and finding joy in the iridescent autumnal light. Lots of news to share this month so I’ll not dither

October’s First Sunday Shenanigans will proceed from the café at John Rylands Library, Deansgate, THIS SUNDAY October 5th at 2pm. There we will be revealing a secret mission which, if you choose to accept it, will add a whole new dimension to your loitering fun…. We’re keeping the details sketchy so it will be a wonderful surprise

The day before the LRM will be joining forces with The Manchester Women’s Design Group (MWDG) for an Urban Wander Saturday 4th October, 12noon-2pm. We’ll be thinking about how the city makes us feel, how we interact with it and if our gender shapes perception. Maps, like roles, can restrict and liberate us… This is a collaborative adventure. As well as interrogating the ‘man made’ environment, we’ll be sharing tales and hidden herstory.

The meeting point is in Urbis Café but unlike other LRM events you must book in advance for this one, please email Hannah at WDS on hberry@wds.org.uk Men and children are welcome to join us. MWDG is a group of women from interested in gender and the built environment. They share information, learn and lobby decision makers to ensure that proper attention is paid to the needs and aspirations of women in way our towns and cities are planned and designed. Their website is at http://www.wds.org.uk/

Our clever friends who prove GPS isn’t all bad The Open Street Map Project are hosting another Manchester mapping weekend on 25th 26th October. The venue details are yet to be confirmed, more details are available from http://wiki.openstreetmap.org/index.php/Mapchester

If anyone technologically minded has a spare afternoon I would really like to get the LRM mailing list and website sorted this month and will gladly repay you with cake. In the meantime, as ever, apologies for cyber tardiness and cross / lost postings but the streets tempt me so much more than the screen

Last month we introduced the world to CCTV bingo; no one has called ‘house’ yet so the prize is still up for grabs. Do get in touch if you would like a game card. More information about the issues raised can be found at http://www.no2id.net/ or from an international situationist perspective http://www.notbored.org/the-scp.html

I have been trying to write something about the psychogeographical effects of the enhanced security and paranoia the labour conference bought to town. I’ve been too angry for coherance but that, along with various apocalyptic stories I’ve been told recently, have left me feeling a bit scared and gloomy so I’ve hatched a plan to harvest these feelings and transform them into an LRM extravaganza….

Trick or treat? Where are you scared of in Manchester? Is there somewhere you’d love to go but fear stops you investigating? Please let us know at loiter@hepzombie.co,uk or via the facebook group and get ready for a terrifying experiment to celebrate Samhain…. Let’s turn our fear into a positive energy… together we can transform Manchester

Future plans If I can be metaphysical for a moment where should the LRM be going? If you have an idea or a dream of a derive, walk, game or random psychogeographical project we would love to help make it real. It would also be good to have a few future First Sundays planned and publicized in advance. Please, do share your thoughts on this and don’t be shy. The LRM is an open collective and we welcome everyone

I hope our wandering paths cross soon

Love and toffee apples

The loiterers resistance movement

PS don’t forget… 2pm at John Rylands café, Sunday 5th October

hark! the blowing of trumpets

Some people have been saying kind things about us on the internet

the awe inspiring Eugenia P Niblock whose writings we particularly treasure http://diaryofabluestocking.blogspot.com/2008/09/loitering-with-intent-to-make.html

and the indie pop darlings behind an exciting new zine and fun times at

Other people say we are bringing psychogeography into disrepute; this also counts as a compliment in our book but it was down the pub not online