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300 Words From London: Spuds You'll Like

Remember that episode of Cheers when Cliff had a potato that looked like Richard Nixon?

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by Lake, Editor, London for outsideleft.com
originally published: February, 2006
...Competition will be tough. I have a potato here that looks exactly like Ringo Starr.

Remember that episode of Cheers when Cliff had a potato that looked like Richard Nixon? Or remember when feeble magazine-style TV shows had a section where they showed fruit or vegetables that looked like people? Wow. Simple fun. Back in the days before GM and chemicals made all our produce look uniform and blemish free it was always fun to find an Elephant Man look-a-like spud or a carrot that had two legs and a huge erection (insert canned laughter).

These days, even organic shops and home-grown allotment produce seems to be devoid of any freakish vegetable mutants. Where have they all gone?

As a kind of deformed vegetable festival there is a celebrity potato contest in London this very weekend. Organised by the Starchy Gallery it's an opportunity for all glamorous potatoes to gather and battle it out to be King Spud.

Unfortunately, judging by previous years, more effort is put into potato decoration and costuming than in actually finding anthropomorphic tubers. This seems like cheating to me. You can put a dress and a blond wig on any potato and stake a claim its Marilyn Monroe. I want to see more like the marvellous Mother Teresa potato: the wrinkled likeness is uncanny.

Entries are open for your own potato and, like the BAFTAs, you don't even need to be there in person. Just send a photo by email. But be warned, competition will be tough. I have a potato here that looks exactly like Ringo Starr.

Starch Gallery

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Editor, London

the first journalism Lake ever had published was a history of Johnny Thunders for Record Collector magazine, since then he has written for publications including the Guardian, Dazed and Confused, the Idler and more recently, outsideleft.com as you have just seen.

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