Ruining it for Everyone

I’m feeling a bit braindead today after a lengthy trip last night. I’m trying to remedy this with my second cup of tea but instead its just making my bladder weak, so now I am braindead and everytime I do get a spurt of creativity this is ruined by needing the loo. I need to be more awake as I’m trying to write some sponsorship proposals to various companies for my Edinburgh show. What I need to do is spend time on a lengthy couple of pages of what I need and what they will get out of it, but instead I have just typed in 28pt Arial Bold ‘MONEY PLEASE’. I don’t think that will win anyone over.

Think part of my inability to think is a consequence of yesterday’s busy day. The morning was spent demonstrating outside the Daily Mail offices with Mark Thomas, as a result of his discovery that Viscount Rothermere is a tax dodging non-dom French national. These are the sort of loopholes that almost seem too good to be true and a large group of us including Robin Ince, Carrie Quinlan, Bennett Arron and Chris Coltrane all gathered with banners saying things like ‘Dodgy French Toff in Non-Dom Tax Romp’. It was lovely watching people walk past with their noses up until they realised it was anti-Daily Mail at which point they ran over, took leaflets and seemed very interested. Its amazing how many people hate the Daily Mail. They are like the James Blunt of the newspaper world. Lots of people buy it but no one will admit it. Its an embarrassment to be a fan of the Daily Mail and James Blunt and both are right wing and racist. Well, not sure about the last two with Blunt, but its probably right. I mean, look at him. Everyone else’s banner were pretty good, but I had made mine out of two bits of paper and a wooden spoon. I thought that that would be a fail safe in case there was trouble. I would be able to pull out the spoon and just pretend I was running to a cookery class or had received the consolation prize at sports day. What it actually meant was everytime it got windy all the paper bent around the spoon making it look just like I had covered a spoon in paper. Which is what I had done. Robin said it suited me as if anyone should have a banner that looked like a lollipop it should be me.

Then I had my gig at Keele. It was one of those gigs that was never going to be great. The journey up with Lloyd Langford and Henry Paker was fun and we all discovered that each of us has a fairly geeky music taste. I like discovering this about people as it makes me feel like less of a music nerd. I can spend hours batting about obscure band and DJ names but most times this causes people to get really bored and vow never to listen to anything I am talking about ever again. We spent the journey there and back discussing expensive 45″ singles, Blue Break Beats compilations and afro-beat which was, pardon the pun, music to my ears. Then we got to the gig and it all went wrong. First wrong thing was that we arrived early at 7, only to discover that the gig doesn’t start, as advertised at 8.30, but instead at 9.30. This was due to incompetence on their part and as they had been slower and slower getting groups in to all the previous gigs it pushed back the start time later and later. All the posters had a big black pen mark over the start time of 8.30, but did not offer any new time instead. It was as though they had taken away all time and just hoped that people would assume when it was one and hopefully turn up at the right time.

We had two and a half hours to kill on the scarce and rather bleak Keele campus. Its amazing how often universities look a bit like prisons. One of the buildings at my old university in Kent was actually designed by someone who specialised in prisons. Looking at Keele I can only imagine a similar thing happened. If you were to take one of the lady’s from Holloway and place her in a room in Keele I think she would just stay in her room assuming she had been transferred somewhere equally as grim. We managed to find a room devoid of people and with three arcade machines in. Thinking it would be fun, Lloyd put a quid in the Who Wants To Be A Millionaire machine. The machine ate the £1 and did not let us play the game. It appeared that was its own fast way to becoming a millionaire. We also realised perhaps why this room had no one else in it.

When the gig eventually started we had the grand total of 26 people in the room. This would not have been so bad if the room hadn’t been a lengthy warehouse for 200 people. Lloyd had a lovely tactic of promising them all they wouldn’t get picked on if they sat by the front which encouraged about 6 of them to move forward and made the gig a tad more bearable. They were a lovely 26 people but as I started talking to them about what courses they were on and general MC banter, they assumed I was picking on them, resulting in some of the 26 leaving. I did wonder if I should just start calling them all ‘c*nts’ till the room emptied and we could just go home, but I tried to just be friendly. Henry had a great set and then during the interval we discovered that the last one of these was so bad that it had caused a lot of people not to bother with this one. During Lloyd’s set I went off to seek a poster to see who was on and try and find out what they had done. Surprisingly it wasn’t Jonathan Ross or Russell Brand. Lloyd had a good one, although nothing any of us did was ever going to storm it. Unless we stormed it in the marine/guerilla type sense. Although from the sounds of it, that was what happened last time and why no one has come back. I hope those 26 people enjoyed it and maybe next term there will be greater interest in the comedy again. If they haven’t then I’ll still blame the acts from the last gig.

Including last night, I have 10 gigs in 8 days. I feel exhausted thinking about that, and I’m also slightly scared that Layla will start to forget who I am. At the moment we only see each other for a sleepy chat when I get home from a gig and when she leaves for work in the morning. I think if she was to see me not attached to a pillow and snoring slightly she wouldn’t recognise me. Still April seems dead in comparison to this month. I’m not happy about that much, but at least I can pretend I have some sort of social life. I say that, but I know I’ll spend most of it playing Xbox and writing inane thoughts on Twitter. Its a sort of social life. If you’re a robot.

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