No-Pod

I’ve lost my i-pod. I don’t know if its properly lost or just somewhere I haven’t looked for it yet which is also possible. I haven’t yet asked Layla to look for it which means its highly likely its somewhere obvious. Layla is like an object finding magnet. I can spend literally hours looking for something that appears to have vanished into thin air. Layla will then look for it and find it in front of my face. Often I am suspicious she is a magician and that she takes the item in the first place only to then pull it from behind my ear with a ‘tadaa’ and some jazz hands. I don’t like not having my i-pod. Its my 3rd one and so far has survived longer than the other two. The first was tragically thrown into the loo at my old gym when the clip on my shorts broke. I remember its sad little i-face as it was plunged into less than savoury waters and the blue screen flashed twice and then went blank forever. Those two flashes were like it’s little last ‘i-words’. I tried to resuscitate it, but it had gone. It was how I imagine ER would be if it was set in the Apple store.

My second pod was a let down. After two years it just stopped working. It had 17000 songs on it, and they all vanished. I think that could have been the problem. I overloaded it, took it for granted and didn’t care for it enough, and so it got weak and died. Now my third, most successful pod has gone. I’d just loaded lots of new stuff on there too. I’m not quite sure what I’ll do without it. All those unheard podcasts and tracks. I’ll have to not listen to anything as I do the minimal amount of walking that I manage to do occasionally. I’m a bit scared and excited about hearing the real world again. For ages the walk to the tube has only ever sounded like Adam and Joe, Collins and Herring or music of a variety of types. Now it will sound of Finsbury Park, shouty drunk people, shouty not drunk people, shouty people that are not able to tell if they are drunk or not, cars and wee smell. It reminds me a bit of an amazing graphic novel by Kid Koala called ‘Nufonia Must Fall’. Its about a robot who only ever listens to the world through headphones and then one day he is made to remove them and realises the world’s natural sounds are beautiful music too. Its one of my favourite books. Of course the robot doesn’t live in Finsbury Park. If he did, those headphones would go straight back on before his ears bled.

Leaving my house yesterday with no i-pod was immediately hazardous. For the first time ever I was offered drugs by a kid on our road. He hasn’t been on our road before and he just appeared with four or five other aggressive looking young people. I decided to walk straight through them because I’m a bad ass, and normally on the i-pod a situation like this would be accompanied by some serious funk. I like to think that if the soundtrack to me getting repeatedly punched in the face was the OST for Shaft that I would walk away still feeling cool. Just cool with a broken face. So I walked straight through them with no pod sounds and one of them grabbed my arm and just said ‘Charlie Skunk’. I really wanted to say ‘No, you must have mistaken me for someone else. I am not Charlie Skunk.’ But I just said no thanks and added a hugely insincere ‘mate’ at the end. I hope this doesn’t continue to happen. There is only so often I can pretend to be mates with an aggressive looking drug dealing teenager.

To make up for lack of recorded music, I went along to a live gig last night to watch my brother (aka the Last Skeptik), Sam (Get Cape) and several others do their first set as experimental world music mash up types Italia 90. I had spent the previous few hours with my friend Mat, drinking lots, and eating food that kicked weight watchers in the face. I almost wished I’d had a funk soundtrack to back it up. When our milkshakes arrived it was necessary to say ‘wokka wokka bow bow’ (funk noises, not odd dog noises. Although read it as you wish. You’ll probably do it wrong though). To call them milkshakes is wrong. Partly because they were maltshakes but also because they were more than just a dairy based drink. They were a massive peanut butter and banana dairy based drink of goodness. Unfortunately most of the goodness was actually badness and we struggled to move for a while as all our arteries had clogged up. We spent some time reminiscing on younger days when we went out drinking till the wee hours and hilarious anecdotes would happen. We then yawned, realised it was only 9pm and felt old and weak. I managed to persuade Mat to come along to the gig even though he hates clubs. I also hate clubs, but because this was live music in a club it was doable. Before the show started we sat in the upstairs bar and spent ages complaining about how loud the music was and then sending tweets on twitter about it all. We have become old, weak and anti-social.

The show was pretty good, especially as they had only had one rehearsal and was quite an experiment blending several genres of music. As a result the crowd was a mix of indie kids, hop hop heads, world music hippies and me and Mat. Oh and the one man that in one form or another is at every gig. You will know of him. Last night he had a pony tail, beard and trousers that didn’t quite cover his socks. Sometimes they appear very different to this, like the small sweaty round bald man at the REM concert I went to last year. Or the awkwardly tall man in a suit that was too small for him at the Madlib gig a couple of years ago. However they look, they are easy to spot, as they don’t quite fit with the room. Its hard to say why but you will know when you see them that they are that man. The man who will stand right at the front and dance. Dance completely out of rhythm, but as furiously and excitedly as possible. These people are the party. Its just not the party anyone else wants to be at. This man last night just did two moves. Wavy or arms like he was operating one of those see saw like train cart systems you see in old films. He created a small circle of space around him, and people on the outskirts of this just stared, both in concern and in respect. I thought he was brilliant. He didn’t care what anyone else was doing he wanted to dance as crazy as he possibly could. Michael Flately can eat his own legs, for last night the beardy pony tailed man was the lord of the dance. I’m not sure where these men appear from, and they are always men, but I like to think that if they ever stopped appearing at shows the music world would collapse. They are to live music gigs what ravens are to the Tower of London. If ravens did a mental dance at the front of the entrance by the Beefeaters.

No gig again tonight. Its a good thing though as I ended up staying out with my brother and embarking to Sam’s house for further damage. I feel rotten today and have already banned myself from doing anything to strenuous. I might lie down and listen to some serious funk. That way it’ll be the coolest lie down ever. People will walk past and say ‘who’s the man who lies down like a motherf**ker…..Douieb! T Douieb!’ Although if they walk past my living room it means they are in my garden, and then I should probably call the police.

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