Once again it’s time to whip off that dreary, winter melancholy and ramp up that sunny, spring time fun as we hit the Fundon A-Z. Today, J-Q…
Joining a film club. Local movie screenings in pubs, clubs or museums, often introduced by a bespectacled geek with more enthusiasm than rhetorical skills, are a cosy local alternative to the multiplex. Try Aorta Burst at Roxy Bar and Screen for bizarre treats from the VHS vaults, or Big Red in Deptford, a double-decker bus which hosts film nights as well as offering pizza, cocktails, comedy and shisha pipes. And check Time Out’s film events pages.
Karting. Like driving? Wish you could do it while your bum’s disturbingly close to the ground? Then the perineum-endangering pursuit of go-karting is for you. Team Sport’s multilevel Tower Bridge track is like something out of real-life ‘Mario Kart’ (no chucking turtle shells at other drivers, though). A (literally) more laidback approach to mobility comes from recumbent bikes, where you can cycle lying down. Hire them (or a tandem, or a side-by-side bike) in Battersea Park or Dulwich Park for £8 to £15 an hour.
LOL orchestra (above). The April Fools’ Day Comedy Concert at the Royal Festival Hall features Rainer Hersch: a classical musician who is actually funny. His orchestra does routines like playing well-known classical tunes in random musical styles suggested by the audience. Guests include impressionist Alistair McGowan, the Ukulele Orchestra of Great Britain and piano god Marc-André Hamelin. Lots of fun for classical aficionados (and normal people).
Movie marathons. Actual marathons require specialist underwear, months of training and, in the women’s event, anyway, having a poo at the side of the road halfway round. None of that stuff is required at a movie marathon at Prince Charles Cinema. You can wear whatever undies you want. Check Time Out’s Film listings for classic trilogies (‘Toy Story’ is probably the most fun), director retrospectives and genre nights among like-minded loons. Mile High Dining is nothing to do with eating baby food with plastic cutlery in a whiffy airborne toilet, but is a destination-themed pop-up which delivers the highlights of Scandi food without having to queue at Luton. Be warned, it books out faster than an EasyJet flight in August. Next stops with tickets available are ‘Copenhagen’ (June) and ‘Reykjavik’ (July).
Naked rollerskating art with penguins.British art’s brightest young spark Eddie Peake has recreated London Zoo’s iconic modernist penguin enclosure in the Bermondsey outpost of the cool White Cube gallery empire. Visit between Thursday and Sunday, and instead of flightless birds, you’ll find a naked gent, rollerskating. (You’d never get the penguins to work in these conditions.)
Oil. Black gold is many things: justification for war, scourge of indigenous peoples, hard-to-get-out stain. But it’s rarely considered fun. Richard Wilson’s artwork ‘20:50’ is, though. A huge tank of black goop with a heady stink, it fills a whole room at the Saatchi Gallery. A walkway allows you to stand in the middle of it, with the oil all around you up to chest height. It’s like your first swimming lesson, if you were some kind of prehistoric swamp thing.
Pongathon. Rich Mix’s table tennis night is one of London’s wackiest. There’s a live DJ, VJ, matches with ‘mini bats’ and the Pongbot Challenge, where players take it in turns to spend 60 seconds in front of a ball-firing machine. The one who returns the most is the night’s winner. Be warned: you may have to hop. For a less intense use of a paddle, find a canal. The most fun way to do it is via Moo Canoes, which has created some cow-print vessels. Why? Why the devil not!
Questing like you’re in ‘The Crystal Maze’. Hint Hunt is the most fun thing we’ve done this year, bar none. You’re locked in a room, a timer counts down from 60 minutes and from there, it’s a frantic team effort to hunt for hidden panels, crack codes and complete puzzles that’ll solve a murder before the time runs out. Get it right, and the door swings open, letting you walk to freedom. Get it wrong and… Well, the door still opens, but you’ll come out doing the walk of shame. In the land of Fundon, this is the new ‘Secret Cinema.’