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« BACK | HOME » ABOUT » THE SPIRIT SPEAKS » I AM NOT PETER STRINGFELLOW

I AM NOT PETER STRINGFELLOW

posted 24th July 07 ___

We’ve done two more shows since I wrote my last entry, and surprisingly we’ve managed to get through them without serious injury or legal complications. In New Quay I almost managed to brain our new sound technician, Stuart, with my keyboard during a particularly violent solo during ‘Shoot Me Up’, but that’ll teach him to attach it to the keyboard stand with velcro. I’d hoped there might be a few high jinks when the Cornish contingent of the Hell’s Angels turned up, and D.Wayne informed security that all members of the Chapter were to be allowed in for free, but everybody behaved with impeccable decorum, and the evening passed pleasantly. How dull. The show, though, was wicked, and it was nice to see so many fresh young faces in the crowd. But after the show, as so often, I’m struck by a deadening sense of anti – climax. It’s such a wind up; after hours of sitting around on the bus, sitting around in the pub, sitting around at sound check, as the show draws near, you start getting excited… then finally your on stage and all those dreary hours melt away in a hot rush of adrenaline (or is that oestrogen?). The show flies by, you climb off stage, tart around for a bit, drink all the warm Red Stripe in the fridge, Then you’re alone the dressing room, sitting among the wreckage of tinned tuna and processed cheese, wishing you’d stayed on in college and done that M.S.C. in Town Planning.

In a desperate attempt to stave off this burgeoning sense of futility, Steve XXXX suggests we repair to the Tall Trees… It’s a nightclub, with alcohol in it, it’s right next to where the bus is parked, and there’s a lap dancing clubin the back. Despite my vociferous and heartfelt objections, Steve persuades me to accompany him to this dubious establishment.

We stop off at the bus, and by the fire exit a member of security is having a cheeky fag. We explain that we’re poor lost pop musicians from out of town in dire need of late night refreshment. He tells us to go round the front and say that Ross sent us. After a bit of wrangling with his scary-looking co-workers on the door, we’re in.

We head for the main dancefloor, where we are greeted with a terrifying vista:
Three Hundred pubescent teens in a frenzied grope-fest. Everybody here looks about 12, And they’re stuck to each other’s faces like their tonsils are tied together. The D.J.’s on some kind of Dizee Rascal/ Aerosmith soundclash tip, but its hard to tell cos no tune lasts longer than 9 seconds. Then every 2 minutes a siren goes off, and a hoard of teenagers mob the bar for half price drinks. It’s the nightlife equivalent of Quiz Call, like being trapped inside a fruit machine.

Then slowly, with creeping horror, I realize that one by one, the kids are ungluing themselves from each other’s faces and staring at me. I look down at what I’m wearing… I’ve neglected to change out of the white MOR seventies style cream suit I wore on stage. Worse, earlier that day I visited the local branch of 'Claire’s Accessories', and treated myself to a large, imitation silver heart shaped glitterball pendant and some cheap aviator shades to enhance the sleaziness of the look. And I have just ordered a SMIRNOFF ICE. I look, in short, like a CUNT. Many of the kids are now openly laughing and pointing. Oh my fucking God, HOW DID THIS HAPPEN? A sneering security guard sidles up to me and sneers ‘Like young girls, do you sir?’ In an imploring tone I try to cry out “PLEASE! NO! YOUNG PEOPLE OF NEW QUAY! I AM BEING IRONIC! I AM NOT PETER STRINGFELLOW!" But my words are drowned out by the sound of a siren and the stampeding heard of the new generation...

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© Orlando Harrison 2007