This morning the age of the internet who commonly serves me incredibly well in almost every single aspect of my life did me wrong on a deep level.

Who would have thought that birthday reminders, sent silently via email, would actually end up crippling you. Instead of being a crisp reminder of your best friends birthday — que, hands running through hair, then knuckles to chin… see of course I remember you’re my best friend, whilst the inner you smirks and high fives your digital personal assistant who so sweetly whispers in your ear vital information at yet another intoxicatingly boring drinks doo.

This morning my digital PA, who has been confident, head strong and consistent truly balls it.. ripping off the plaster, she, he, it, whoever or whatever gender this digital service masquerades as sent me an email reminding me of my Dead Friends Birthday.

Mic drop, sorry if you dropped your spoon full of shreddies. yes. My dead friend. Now in the bushy midst of my 30s, this is becoming more and more common. My invincibly cloak is torn, I am not Peter Pan, and neither are my friends. It took a fair few five am debates to realise this.

Everything is changing, rapidly. Or not so rapidly, Maybe I just see things clearly now. The steaming window of life is evaporating before my eyes, my 20:s long gone, brittle are my bones and wary are my next footsteps. My friend has been deceased now for nearly 10 years — I must have had these email reminders before, at least 5 of them, 10 max… now it’s really hit me that he’s actually gone. Gone gone. Game over.

And it feels rotten, unduly unfair and unreasonable that someone close to me would be taken in such a way.. I will spare you the details and maybe one day we will meet and I will hit you with the true story like a Gatling gun over enemy terrain; all I will say is this. Live your life with no regrets, my friend lived his to the fullest — he devoured life’s true gifts. In work, rest and play.. although the boy barely worked.

Back to my digital PA… I made the conscious decision not to remind her to not remind me that the reminder was reminding me of some bad times. The memory’s of my fiendish friend comes to me once In a while, maybe once a month but it is few and far between.

I had drinks at the distillery on portobello ( a true classic and new staple of the area ) the other day and the taste of tequila hit me fast and hard, e

Reminding me of one of my first experiences with the Mexican liquor — a vile occasions with about a million shots lined up in different shaped and coloured porcelain mini bins in Azteca in Chelsea. Who was the one paying for the 32nd round, my dear dead friend.. I ate at Maggie Jones, the staple of my youth for Sunday’s lunches whilst I pretended I was a lost boy of Notting hill, and still possibly the best date venue of all time — if Walking into a french farm scene in 1948, with hay bails, copper pan riddled ceilings, broken horse wheels and magnums of red wine can’t get you laid there is no hope for you dear sir, please take a long walk off a short bridge your time is up on this world. All jokes aside, Maggie Jones Is a place to share and receive love, all beautifully conducted by the restaurants lovely owner and loyal team. Oh and the double bread servings. Yes please. Long Sunday’s spent her with a motley crew of children again reminded me of my days galavanting in the groves of kings road and Knightsbridge attempting to be a Sloane. By the way, Do Sloanes even exist anymore?

I found myself lurking around joe on the juice on kings road after being bitterly disappointed but the latest Saatchi exhibition — spoiler alert — it’s all about sustainability, the world we live in and how to save it. Okay it’s great on that level ( extinct rebellion please Jesus don’t turn up to my flat and leave a warm reminder of my short comings on my door ) but a whole room of blue plastic bags? It’s a big room too — i get it’s a waste but isn’t it just a waste of all of our time too?

Not one Sloane did I see — I saw a lot of Gucci tracksuits, spice girls esq platforms trainers and hell of a lot of designer stubbled children. What has happened to Chelsea — an identity crisis if I’d ever seen one. The Sloanes can’t all be hiding at the ivy, can they?? It is a sad day to see the once red trousers yuppies I so wanted to be, and so gladly ran away from when discovering Notting Hill, become deleted by fast fashion and the rise of the newsfeed politics and pier pressure.

My gentle reminder this morning has prompted me to remember the good times, the sad Times and the memories of old. Although I sat in silence, blurred vision and cold hands and my phone slowly blinked off and on, morning notifications desperately vying for my attention. I am happy it happened, technology is here and truly embedded in our future but a beautiful cast iron reminder of the past.



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Stevie Thomas

Stevie Thomas


Serial restauranteur & British food writer. Co-Founded The Rum Kitchen in 2012, Former Director of Geales, Notting Hill. New stories weekly(ish)