Monday, 11 July 2011

Kray Triplets and chewing gum...


Above is of course the famous photograph of infamous East End gangsters the Kray Twins (I resist using the idiot word 'iconic' which seems to be all over everywhere like a rash - or more exactly substitute for thinking - at the moment). The recent dramas as regards News International has got the rabbit thinking that there is an eerie echo of the Kray twins in 1960s photos of Rupert Murdoch. The same air of menace, the same suit, white shirt and plain dark tie. Were the three seperated at birth and there were in fact Kray Triplets? Rupert's name begins with an 'R' - he wrote labouring the obvious - thus melding perfectly with Ronnie and Reggie. Spooky huh? -  as that other great Australian, Dame Edna Everage, would say.

 


More prosaically, an initial comment on living in Croydon. Earlier today, the rabbit hopped into Sainsburys in the Whitgift centre (big shopping complex in central Croydon for the uninitiated). Now since stopping smoking as exclusively revealed (like anyone else would care) on White Rabbit at the time, the rabbit has developed an addiction to Orbit chewing gum. Being down to 2 or 3 sticks the rabbit starts hunting the presumably obvious places in Sainsburys. No joy. I ask a staff member. 'We stopped stocking them' he explained. 'People steal them'. Huh? Another staff member intervenes and says they do in fact still sell them but you have to ask as they are behind the counter at the checkout. The rabbit eventually negotiated a pack of 3 blue Orbit from behind the checkout.


All very odd. Come to Croydon. Local sport: stealing chewing gum.

15 comments:

sybil law said...

Nothing beats Trident gum - specifically, Tropical Twist. Yum. I am addicted to it!
I guess gum is the easiest thing to steal...

Pearl said...

People are stealing gum?! Well why not, huh?

And the Krays? I hate to say this, but I'd never seen a real picture of them; but I've seen the movie -- the name of which eludes me at the moment -- a number of times... What the hell was that movie called?! Used the twins from that 80's pop group...

Shoot. Was it called The Krays?

Ack!

:-)

Pearl

Catch Her in the Wry said...

Every middle-aged brunette male in the 1960's looked like that, except those who wore glasses. They all looked like Buddy Holly.

Cold medications are kept behind the counter in the USA because of its use in meth manufacturing. Perhaps there's a new illegal drug being made from chewing gum.

One request: If we ever meet, please don't CHOMP, CHOMP, CHOMP that gum. I might become as much a b*tch as Carolyn Bourne in reminding you of proper manners.

Petit fleur said...

So... do they just steal Orbit gum, or is it gum in general? Either way is strange, but if it were just the Orbit, that would really tip the strange-O-meter.

Funny about the triplets. I think you're on to something.

Peace and Orbit,
pf

white rabbit said...

Sybil - Hmmm.... I think the gum of choice of the Croydon shoplifter is called Extra,

Pearl - Yup. It was called 'The Krays' - Ross and Martin Kemp played the homicidal duo.

Catchy - Sooooo.... Every brown haired man looked like a cross between the Krays and Papa Doch in the 60s? Buddy Holly lookalikes apart of course. As to the delicious but sadly improbable idea of meeting, I don't chomp gum. Nope. Not at all.

Little Flower - as above the gum of choice for the Croydon shoplifter is almost certainly Extra. Peace and Orbit indeed :))

jailhouselawyer said...

There was, of course, the Kray Twins older brother Charlie.

In my dealings with them during the 60s, and later in prison during the 70s and 80s, I found them to be perfect gentlemen. There again, I never crossed them...

However, I do recall during the 60s when the Kray Twins sought to expand their empire north of Watford to include Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester and even Newcastle. The Leeds Mob received a tip off from a Detective Inspector, and we met their train at Leeds City Station. They were persuaded to get back on the train for its return journey.

At that time Leeds had more crime per capita than London. Betting shops became legal, and clubs and coffee shops were opened up. The Mafia controlled ice cream parlours, and farming down South.

Sometimes I would cross the Pennines to assist George "the Greek" Pantelli and the Manchester Firm with their clubs.

Unfortunately, the absence of a statute of limitations means some of this social history will die with me.

white rabbit said...

JHL - Marvellous stuff!

There was indeed Charlie.

I was an adolescent in Leeds at the time you speak of and thus not personally responsible for the crimewave.

I like the idea of George 'The Greek' Pantelli. maybe you should write it down but put it in a time capsule or a bank vault 'not to be opened until I pop my clogs'....

white rabbit said...

Afterthought for JHL...

The Mafia controlled farming down south?

Huh? All of it?

Dr. Heckle said...

I can't chew gum anymore... I'll sit there and chew the whole damn thing within a couple hours.

Memphis Steve said...

I don't understand the Murdoch scandal. The Press over here in America acts that way all the time, and never says "sorry" for any of it.

I wish the biggest crime problem in Memphis was gum stealing. Instead, we have gang bangers shooting men in the genitals with handguns and lawmakers who refuse to do anything about it.

jailhouselawyer said...

WR: I was responsible for a mini crime wave of burglaries, being a prolific cat burglar, and would hit half a dozen places close together in one night. Next morning I would smile as I walked past the grey mini van of the burglary squad, on my way to the bank.

George "the Greek" Pantelli owned several clubs, for example, George's and Uncle George, and I recall he had a problem with 3 types demanding protection money. They failed and ended up in the boot of a car. Eventually, he served 7 years in Wakefield Prison, much of it in the prison hospital due to ill health, and he died not long after his release.

Some of it has already been written down...

Quite a bit of Surrey and Sussex controlled by the Mafia.

Humberside and East Yorkshire has a strong Russian/Latvia Mafia control in Employment Agencies, and accomodation for Eastern Europeans, and employees wages are deducted for "finding fees".

There was a rumour, mentioned in a book, that the Kray Twins used a 16 year old youth from Leeds to rid them of the problem of Frankie "Mad Axeman" Mitchell. Whatever, the Kray Twins took their secret to their graves...

white rabbit said...

Dr Heckle - As the White Rabbit medical adviuser, i have to say that sets a very bad example

Steve - Interesting but I don't know enough about US newspapers to comment. I do know that some US shareholders are very pissed off with Murdoch and bringing court action.

JHL - Have you thought of fictionalising this stuff? Gets round obvious problems. If you need a ghostwriter... ;)

tony said...

Congratulations On The Giving-up-smoking-thing.I gave up for several years & know how hard it can be.
Yes, the chewing gum helps (plus:another tip: trying supping Tonic Water..something about the Quinine in it helps I found)
I managed to give up the cigarettes but could never kick the habit of stubbing out when finished.I became something of a Gumshoe........
Did You Know I Used To Live In The East End? It Was So Rough Then,Even The Krays Had To Go Around In Pairs......
I Rest My Case MeLord.

white rabbit said...

Tony - Loved the bit about the East End being so rough that even the Krays went around in pairs... :))

Laci the Chinese Crested said...

Congratulations on giving up that feelthy habit! Remember that say it's harder to kick than heroin!

No, nothing like a Kray. Or Chopper Reed.

But he is slime. While I have nothing against dual nationals or internationalists, I do have something about ones with no conscience who seek to destroy the lives of others in more than one way.

It would be interesting if the Koch Bros start figuring into this story soon on the British side of the Pond.