Back in London and looks like the heatwave is still on after a break in the temperatures while I was away. Many thanks to Ian for spotting a story about "conceptual artist" Liam Yeates late last week. He said "About a year ago I was getting fed up with travelling on the Tube and being hemmed in with someone's armpit in my face. I developed a suit to keep people away and get round the problems of travelling on the Tube."
There's an electric fan disguised as a briefcase to keep cool, but also other "Inspector Gadget" like items include some novel "seat savers" designed to ensure other passenger stay or at least don't use the seat next to him. These include the charming fake turd and a spoon dripping with plastic 'yoghurt'.
Mr Yeates claims to have received some positive reaction tot he suit after appearing on the DLR and the District Line last week. However a puzzled passer by said "Is he meant to be a superhero? Or has John Major influenced him? He used to wear grey pants over his trousers."
Yeates believes his suit is conceptual art, yet he's actually sponsored by Mobizines who carried out a survey to try to find ten commuter commandments (they produce magazines that can be downloaded onto mobile devices presumably a way to deal with a boring commute). One of the commandements definitely seem to echo Yeates' wish to keep well away from fellow Tube passengers - "Thou shalt never speak to fellow commuters unless completely necessary".
However, Yeates in convinced his suit is more than just a commercial gimick to remind people about commuter crush (as if we need reminding) "People who get p***ed off with conceptual art feel that because they don't understand it or they aren't involved in it. Most people don't understand conceptual art but it is still valid."
But is it really art or just a commercial gimmick? Would you engage Mr Yeates on the Tube with a conversation about how Hell is other people, or do you just think he's a bit of a nutter who raided a joke shop? If his suits seems a bit over the top, do you have any other personal tips on keeping your own bit of personal space on the Tube? Share them, please, as it looks like being another hot week.