Pretty scary day in London today. A massive CAR BOMB was found and defused in Piccadilly Circus (above), the heart of London's West End theatre district. Piccadilly Circus is the equivalent of New York's Times Square. It's a very touristy, very busy area that is packed with crowds of people day and night. It's the height of tourist season in England. Had this bomb gone off, the death toll would have been catastrophic. Understandably, the British TV channels and radio stations are providing wall-to-wall coverage of the news, which right now, isn't much. Still no word on who may have planted this bomb. IRA? Al Qaeda? Eco-terrorists? Home-grown thugs? Who knows.
UPDATE: British officials say the crude car bomb was a Mercedes packed with nearly 100 liters of gasoline, gas cylinders and nails. The car was parked in front of the Tiger-Tiger restaurant/bar on Haymarket Street just off Piccadilly Circus. Had it exploded, "hundreds" of people would have been killed and injured. The car bomb was discovered by dumb luck, by an observant ambulance crew who noticed smoke inside the car. Officials further say that this bomb has the hallmarks of Al Qaeda.
The timing of this attempted bomb plot is interesting. For those who haven't heard, Britain has a new prime minister. After 10 years, Tony Blair (left) is out. And GORDON BROWN is in. PM Brown is not as charismatic or "TV friendly" as Blair. The frumpy Brown has been described as an "Atlanticist" because of his pro-American ideologies. He even spends his summer vacations in Martha's Vineyard. You can't get much more American than that! Also next week is the second anniversary of the 7/7 bombings that killed 52 people on London transport in 2005.
The SPICE GIRLS have reunited after nearly 10 years on hiatus making babies and embarking on failed solo ventures. They are playing various cities around the world this December and January. No word on why Victoria "Posh Spice" Beckham smuggled two hard melons into the press conference. Personally I was always partial to Ginger Spice.
Finally, the other news in London this week is WIMBLEDON. Unfortunately, there hasn't been much tennis to watch because it's been raining for about six days straight. During the rare breaks in the rain, only a few matches have been played. Most of the time, the courts have remain covered by tarps. Judging by the empty seats at the courts, there seem to be lots of no-shows by fans fearful of the rain. Obligatory Maria Sharapova photo: