Thursday, 15 April 2010

February's Blackpool Absurdity

“Everything I do is either illegal, immoral or fattening.”
-WC Fields

I think the only noteworthy thing this month is the trip to Blackpool for Apone's birthday, where we all got steaming during the day, dressed in an array of ridiculous outfits- Me: Fireman, Ferro: Julius Caesar, Hudson: Nun, Apone: Nurse (a guy in the girl's outfit, with a wig) and Hicks: Knight. Drunken banter was out of control. The Nun took offence to something someone said, and stormed off on his own down the promenade like an angry sister of God.

When we made it back to the hotel, the manager told us The Nun had left to get a taxi: he had started his pilgrimage back to his convent in Oldham. We prayed for the sister's safe return.

Outfits off. Trendy shit on. It was at this moment, in the hotel room, that the booze hit me. Unfortunately, like any other normal human being, the lack of control that alcohol causes is something I cannot deal with. I had what can only be described as a panic attack. Alcohol accentuates my weaknesses and exacerbates my fears, and sometimes it can break me. That's why I was staring at myself in the hotel room mirror, forcibly gripping the sink, close to tears.

Hicks noticed.

“What's up with you?”


For the record, I don't mind being encouraged to have a few drinks. People know that I love my whisky and that, if I'm not driving, I'm on it. Only there is a line that we all cross after a few drinks. For most people, once that line is crossed, it's happy days. They don't care about anything. Unfortunately, wild paranoia ensues after I step over that line.

We then only needed one taxi to get us to Sanuk. Money was practically pissing out of my wallet. Ah, I thought. This is the other reason I don't normally drink. It costs too Goddamn much. Now I remember.

The entrance to Sanuk has a bar area, a smaller reception-type room to walk through and buy a drink before you reach the main halls. I was stood with a small glass of coke, offsetting everyone drinking pints.

“What the fuck is that?”

Ferro pointed disappointedly at my drink. The lack of bown froth or the surface of the coke indicated that it contained no alcohol.

“Dude...” I say, unsure of where to start. “I really don't like being pissed...”

Weve discussed this before, but I just can't seem to hit the nail on the head.

How do I describe this without wussing out?

“Nothing's going to happen,” Ferro said. “We're all looking out for each other.”

Of course, what I wanted to say was that every time I get pissed, I forget twice as much as I usually do, which is already a lot. This leads to me feeling like a clueless pissrat, a liability and a pain in the the arse for everyone else in the group. In short, I feel like a powerless child, not a man that any woman would look at. If I cross a certain alcohol threshold, I know I'm not going to meet any women. And it hurts to know that.

Ironically, In Sanuk I pulled some girl from Bolton or somewhere, and she asked me to come to Syndicate with her. Syndicate is the UK's largest club, with a capacity of 4,300- apparently a series of interconnected halls playing various styles of music. I think I only saw one of the rooms, partly because I was too drunk to venture around and partly because I didn't want to leave the girl. I was also fascinated by the giant spinning dance floor and the girls using it to do the splits on the circumference of the slowly-rotating disc.

On the dance floor itself, the girl I was with crumbled up an ecstasy pill and stuck half of it to the end of her tongue. I sucked it straight into my mouth and swallowed it with a swig of water.

This was my first E. The sensation reminded me instantly of some song by The Streets.

And I'm thinkin'...
(Lights are blinding my eyes)
That's proper rank, that tastes like hairspray
And I'm thinkin'...

I must have spent ages with her at the back of the club, because eventually the music stopped and the lights turned on, dazzling me. We swapped numbers and I left the club. My ears were ringing loudly, as if I'd been stood right next to a speaker, and when I got outside I noticed that it had started to snow again. I was in jeans and a t-shirt. I ran out onto the promenade and flagged a taxi down, but the driver told me that the hotel was a short enough distance to run. So that's what I did, as fast as I damn well could, past the now-quiet amusement arcades and crowded, steaming chip shops. Ahead of me, the streetlights blurred with tiny comet-tails, bouncing in-synch with my footsteps.

Talk about “Duality of Man”, I thought. Matt, you're an idiot. First off, you should have stayed with her. Second, you hate what alcohol does to you. So what do you do? Drink all day, then go to a super-club with a girl you don't know and ingest narcotics straight out of her mouth. You think that's going to make you any better? But then, what is life without experimentation?

We drove back the next morning. The fact that I didn't spew in Apone's Jag half-way down the motorway is nothing short of a miracle.

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