"Right. Tony. I remember."
Yeah, man. I loved seeing The Pyrenees, and the dopey Black Forest, and the big dumb Alps. I loved the home cooked meals we had. I loved when people laughed or danced or felt compelled to enjoy what we do. I love Europe.
Would I do this again?
Well, of course.
I wonder if anyone else will want to.
With a feedback soaked soundcheck, we took the stage to another backline of Marshall stacks. Like Robin Hood, we used the equipment of the rich to make music for the poor. Mike’s wisecrack about Margaret Thatcher mistaking a milkshake machine for a bidet, and sitting on a steaming pile of bubble and squeak, resonated with the poor. After the set a gentle security thug paid me a compliment on my drumming. Thanks, mate!
These afternoon sets are funny. What do you do afterward? We chose to hang out at a pub that served honest ales and scrumpies while smoking fags with goofy French birds speaking in cat tongues. Right? We met some new Brits that made fun of my Dunhills (“That’s what my father smokes!”) and told us about a ploughman’s drink that tasted like meat! Of course I wanted to try this chumly or brimbly or brapsworthy or whatever the fuck it’s called, but the pub didn’t serve it. So we went back to the club to cash in our food voucher. Gimmee a fuckin’ bap, man, I’m drunk and hungry!! Right? Every inch of the festival crawled with current British style: gals in black leggings, men in skinny jeans, L.A. pay-to-play hairdoos, Desperately Seeking Susan hats, I even saw a guy sporting a 1987 tight roll around his ankles. I never knew irony could be sexy.
It was decided that the festival was stupid now, so we went back to Simmo and Helene’s for some more spirits and listening to fuckin’ records, man. We busted out Isaac Hayes, Lionel Richie, “Calling Occupants of Interplanetary Craft,” Heavy Vegetable, Half Man Half Biscuit, obscure thrift store funk finds, and Simmo’s coup de grace, “Don’t Worry Be Happy” at 33 & a third. Don’t knock it til you try it.
Then Simmo, like a librarian, read us jagged children’s satire by Raymond Briggs, and I admired Helene’s twisted Peanuts drawings, demanding that she contribute artwork to my other band.
The evening faded, the turntable spun, my eyelids kissed. My surname, shouted with a British accent, arose me as I grasped a sweating Czech Budweiser, glazed in an armchair.