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Saturday, 28 May 2011

Roddinghead (Road) Revisted

It was one of those lovely May days in Glasgow where it swiftly gyrates between warm rain and sunshine and the clouds move fast like you see in some of these arthouse movies when its a dream sequence.

So i decided to test how fit i still am and took a long run up through my old haunts in the suburbs near my parents house.

What was interesting (at least for me) was the story that some streets tell - I was thinking this as i ran along Roddinghead Road. Roddinghead Road is one of those new money streets peopled by an assortment of families who are rich as hell but immensely vulgar (usually indians, greeks, italians, arabs, the less classy Jews, and of course proletariat who've done well - basically the type of people who don't get into the Golf Club up here)

 The typical 'thing to do' if you make a lot of money quickly and are ill-bred, is to buy an old pile on this street, demolish it (or if you feel particularly rich and vulgar you buy the house next door too and demolish that to make an even bigger plot) then you build an extremely ugly but enormous house, with the aim of showing off to the people next door how stupidly rich you are. Sadly the formerly lovely avenue of Roddinghead Road is full of these nasty 'Pondarosa' style carbunkles.

You can really read the story of the current times here -  On a road of say 40 houses, while of course most are still solid looking and deuce despite the numerous interlopers, there were McMansions for sale (foreclosed?), empty McMansions with long grass (abandoned?), and at the end a large empty space where some chancer had demolished the house, with the intention I suppose of showing off his timeshare/drugs/real estate/football player money by building some monster sized monument to his working class roots. But since the grass was already grown long there, perhaps after knocking the house down, he lost his money as quick as you could say 'negative equity'.

 Fortunately, for Roddinghead Road, the times of fast easy money are gone, and who knows, in time these streets will recover from is rash of vulgar palaces built in the last 20 years. But for now, despite there being no apparent recession in the rest of Glasgow, this tells me what i already suspected - the easy buck has gone now, and won't be back for a long time.

But with easy loans gone, where will the new businesses be? where will that brace of chancers and barrow boys who always seem to manage to make it ? Guys like Alan Sugar or Richard Branson? I'm sure the younger generation of confident and energetic are a lot better than on the 'apprentice' show in real life. However - we're only now just at the beginning of the great unwinding of the credit bubble so with no money available, only the real deals will pull through, and these guys (I hope) wont be building crappy but enormous homes on Roddinghead Road. Maybe they'll even demolish a couple and build decent homes.

I'll drop up there in 5 years time and report...

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