Rock Steady Eddie's, Camberwell
2A Coldharbour Lane
by Herby Banger
8am, Kings College Hospital Dental Unit. I’m told that this could take some time. Luckily I’m just there for support, which means as my girlfriend disappears reluctantly through yet more unmarked swing doors I have time to kill in Camberwell.
I know where I’m headed; I’ve driven past it too many times not for it to be embedded in the back of my mind. Rock Steady Eddie's Café, the most garish looking spoon in the area. Outside it’s a glitzy overbearing sign and inside it’s traditional Formica tables and high backed booth style seats, overlooked by rock 'n’ roll and Hollywood posters. Everything however seems faded and saddened by grease and neglect.
I sit and read the menu which lists the endless dining options on offer. Eddie's tailors for breakfast, lunch and dinner - yet on closer scrutiny there seems to be no discernable difference between any of them, unless 'Onion Rings' constitutes the difference.
Fearing a possible stroke I opt for poached eggs on toast, bacon, beans and bubble. It comes and then it goes; the kind of breakfast that you try to eat as quickly as humanly possible just to get rid of it. Not that it's particularly bad, but its unremarkableness makes its ordinariness stand out.
Dirty, yet cheap, Eddie's has an edge about it even on this early Monday morning. The clientele seem to be the abject poor, and the clearly crazy. Like most people in Eddie's, it seemed that no one intended to wind up there, just circumstances had collided and Fortuna’s wheel had spun them downwards and here they are. That being said Eddie's is a constant, a reliable and maybe the only permanent fixture for people in this area, and for them it serves much more than its feeble £3.85 breakfast.