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This is a question Festivals

Mud, rubbish sex, food poisoning and the Quo replacing the headline act you've mortgaged your house to see. Tell us your experiences

Question from Chart Cat

(, Thu 4 Jun 2009, 13:33)
Pages: Latest, 13, 12, 11, 10, 9, ... 1

This question is now closed.

Farm Festival
Almost a year ago now, my band was booked to play at a small festival in Somerset called Farm Festival. We were due to play at one in the morning, which we were very much looking forward to.

For some reason, and the details are a little hazy in my memory, we couldn't get there till eleven at the evening, which we'd ok'd with the organisers - a hasty line-check should do us fine, after all, it's not like anyone in the crowd would be even approaching sober enough to care what we actually sounded like.

So, we rock up at about eleven, excited by the imminent prospect of a good gig, the spectacles of the fire eaters and dancers and weird light-up hot air balloon things and the all-pervading smell of marijuana. It's always been a mystery where the kind of people who go to festivals go when there are no festivals to go to. I swear I've never met people like it in real life.

Anyway, we're just about to set up to play when an official looking (i.e. could still walk) person came over to us and said, unfortunately, for the first time since the festival's inception, the neighbours had complained about the noise, so we'd have to stop there. No more music tonight. Obviously, it wasn't our fault, so we'd still get paid, which was a small mercy, but we were all gutted as we'd been massively looking forward to it.

A plan, however, begins to germinate, a wonderful, exciting and masterful plan that seemed to spring up indpendent of an actual planner but which nevertheless still caught our imaginations like particularly gullible fish. Someone, seemingly out of nowhere, produced an acoustic guitar, followed shortly by an even more miraculous acoustic bass. Our drummer hastily set up a bare-minimum snare and hi-hat, and by happy coincidence we had a melodica with us. It would do a manful if, in the end, underwhelming job of subbing for our keyboard.

And so, standing at the back of our van near the camping area, we did our whole set acoustically. The crowd started of small, but for the lack of anything better do more than how we played, unfortauntely, soon swelled till there were easily two hundred drunk happy festival-goers watching us. Some bloke at the back started playing with fire poi, and, as the rest of the festival died, we became a hub of outrageous partying, cheap cider, and badly-played acoustic ska.

It was genuinely one of the most uplifting moments of my life, and I can still feel the heavy summer air and hear the distant whoops of wreck-heads as we made music beneath the clear, dark skies. Good times, as they say.

We played quite a few festivals last summer, so I'm not sure quite when the next event I'm going to relate happened, but I'm pretty sure it was the selfsame evening I've just been describing. It's really our bassist's story, but I don't think he's going to tell it and it's too bizarre to be left unimparted.

On the urgent advice of his stomach, our bassist was compelled to buy food in some quantity from the burger stall near one of the stages. Ahead of him in the queue was a quite scary looking old lady with, as he puts it, 'scars all over her face', presumably from some unspeakable event in her past, and a gleam of pure insanity in her eye, but so hungry was he that he had no choice but to stand behind her and pray she wouldn't try and engage him.

Unfortunately, it did not take her long to turn around and look him, slowly and with uncommon menace, up and down.

'Are you a man?' she asked, suddenly.

Wrongfooted, our bassist replied, 'well, I just turned 18 a few weeks ago, so I guess so.'

She turned to the burger guy and observed pithily, 'isn't it funny how boys become men?'

Awkward silence.

'I'm quite glad I never had children,' she continued, unabashed, her voice tremouring oddly. 'Of course, it'd have been fine if I'd had a girl, absolutely fine, but if I'd had a boy, I think I would have killed it.' i'm told the most alarming thing was her matter-of-factness. Bass player and burger vendour look at each other in shock, eyes wide and skin pale, pleading for some escape from the terrifying old girl.

'Of course, it's understandable considering my upbringing'.

She left, abruptly, having made no attempt to order food and leaving quite what was so bad about her upbringing that it would have justified infanticide a merciful enigma. When our bassist came back the group, burgered up and with a look on his face I can only imagine must have been akin to an unlucky train driver who, the day before retirement, was chosen by some unfortunate to be his method of suicide, we were so moved by his apparent distress we asked what was wrong rather than some off-the-cuff insult that would be our usual method of greeting.

I'm still rather hoping she was an hallucination.
(, Thu 11 Jun 2009, 12:00, Reply)
"Tell us your experiences" appears to translate as "tell us you're yet another teenage white stoner at an average festival with no particular story to tell except how unamusingly off your face you were, or how you nearly got busted."

(, Thu 11 Jun 2009, 11:17, 5 replies)
The difference between warm beer and cold beer.
V 2008. My first festival. As a 30 year old I'd spent the best part of 13 years avoiding festivals. Why sleep in a tent, not shower and pay through the nose to watch loads of bands, only a couple of who I actually like.

Anyway, the weekend was in full swing as Kings Of Leon were due on stage. By way of much barging, wriggling and "excuse me-ing" we got some way near the front.

The weather all weekend had been baking hot. Blue skies had been the mainstay all day, and as I dare say with all festivals, each and every person was steaming drunk and / or high.

All of a sudden a massive disgruntled shout of "ewwww!" came from the throng of people in front of us, just seconds after we'd seen a half-full plastic glass of beer bounced off the back of someones head and soaked his surrounding friends.

Obviously, when this happens about twenty yards in front of you, it's the funniest thing in the world, and we were laughing heartily... until the person behind me got hit by a second glass and I found myself drenched head to toe in cold lager.

"Gross" I said, to no-one in particular.

"It's not that bad mate," said the random guy next to me, "if it's cold it means it's only beer. It's when it's warm you need to worry!"

I laughed at the fairly considered response, figuring it made sense, and was just about to agree when a second glass hit me in the back.

"Ewww! It's gone down my leg." moaned my mate Tasha.

"Yeah, it's all over my arm hun." I replied, looking to my left to see the random guy wiping the contents off of his face.

All of a sudden all three of us realised the same thing. Hand on leg, arm and face respectively, we all said in unison: "It's warm..."

And people pay through the nose for this treatment every year!
(, Thu 11 Jun 2009, 8:53, 1 reply)
Free festies are the best festies
I've never paid for a ticket to a festival yet have been to many. This is mainly due to my older brothers who made an art of getting into festivals and gigs for free for years by jumping the fence, getting on guest lists, blagging etc. So I followed the family tradition and soon was doing every festival and gig I could get away with. It always makes for a more exciting festival when you make the huge journey there and don't even know if you'll get through the gates.

One such occasion I went to T in the Park with a mate (who already had a ticket), convinced that I'd be able to get over the fence or something. I'd never been to that particular festival so didn't know the set-up but was sure I'd manage it.

On the Saturday morning my friend and I wandered the entire circumference of the festival trying at various point to scale the fence but to no avail. The first bands were starting up so I told my ticketed friend to get herself in and I'd meet her in there somehow. Long story a bit shorter, I met a band who gave me a (Glastonbury!) wristband that I got in with, met my friend and had a great day.

Leaving for the campsite that evening we were stopped by some wasted guy who needed help finding his car. We duly laughed at him pointing out that there were tens of thousands of cars spread among several car parks and the chances of finding his, in the dark, while drunk, were slim to none. He said he was the guitarist from Texas and if we helped him he'd give us access all areas guest passes. Well, I didn't know if he was bullshitting as I had no idea what the guitarist from Texas looked like (do you?) but the chance of getting a free pass to get in the next day was too good to miss so we set off on our hunt.

I still have no idea how but we found his car, he opened the boot and produced 2 of the most dodgy looking passes you've ever seen - Obviously made on his home computer, printed and laminated with a hole punched in the top, through which was threaded a black shoelace:
TEA (yes, TEA not T)

In Times New Roman font on plain white paper, approx. A5 size.

Naturally I was disappointed as this crap wouldn't get past the wily scrutiny of the gate staff but he insisted that he'd gotten through earlier on the same pass. He said it helps if you have a back-up story (like being the guitarist from Texas) to convince the gate staff so off we went, unconvinced.

Next morning we toddled off to the gate nervously sporting our dodgy passes, we walked up to the gate and waved our passes. The gate staff didn't blink and let us through but then there was a shout from security behind them "Oi! you can't go in with that!".

He came running over, took our opened cans of beer off us and chucked them in the bin.
(, Thu 11 Jun 2009, 1:11, 3 replies)
I paid but had to sneak in
Last time i paid for a ticket to Glasto it cost £17.
Went in a van with 5 others and all the set up for an unofficial food stall.
When we got there it turns out I'm the only one with a ticket.
The driver took my ticket and the rest of us hid under camping and kitchen gear in the back.
Amazingly we got in, but I'd have been furious if found out and turned away
(, Thu 11 Jun 2009, 0:53, Reply)
Glasto 1997 (or 1998 or 1999 - they all blend into one another)
Were any of you there the year it was so muddy that the dance tent got flooded?

They brought in the shit-sucking sewage trucks that regularly service the portaloos on site in the afternoon to suck up the massive puddle so the tent would be usable for the evening's entertainment.

Unfortunately, someone forgot to flip the switch back to suck after previously emptying the contents of the toilets so the truck instantly started spraying the evil dregs of the toilets all over the dance tent.

It was impossible to set foot inside the tent without hurling for the rest of the weekend and most enjoyed the music from a safe distance outside.

(, Thu 11 Jun 2009, 0:47, Reply)
Completely off topic but maybe the people here will care more than the off topicers
Please give Spimf hugs and love.

He really needs it right now.

Things are not nice in his world.

That's all.

(, Thu 11 Jun 2009, 0:08, 5 replies)
Allow me to recommend this:

Garmin Etrex. Portable GPS unit. Costs about £80 new or a bit less off ebay. Accurate to 10ft anywhere in the world. Mark the position of your tent (takes about 2 seconds), then you can find your way back from wherever you end up.

I took mine to France back in April when I went skiing there - However lost in town I got (very, very lost when I was out drinking) this little device got me back to the hotel every time. It also does speed, distance traveled and (for some reason) the best time to go hunting at that particular location.
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 22:58, 1 reply)
I can't wait
to see the utter muddy shit fest that is going to be Download Festival this year. I'm gonna watch the webcam all weekend for a lol.
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 19:40, 6 replies)
How to get drugs into festivals
I went to Global Gathering in 07. My mate and I divided our copious stash, he took his in on Friday without any issues.

I decided to take my half in on Saturday morning - early - assuming there would be no rozzers on duty. Wrong.

I suppose having eyes like saucers and wearing a T shirt with "Stoned" written on it (in tiny pebbles - my favourite T !) was a give-away.

The rozzer set the drug dog on me 3 times. It failed. I got in.


- take substances, wrap in cling film;
- put chilli sauce on cling film. Re-wrap.
- get a Pot Noodle, open very carefully, empty out contents;
- put stash in bottom of empty container. Put contents back in;
- using a hot knife (!) carefully melt the top of the Pot Noodle and re-seal foil over it.

This worked. The dog put its nose to the Pot Noodle and let me go. My mate, who had a bit of green so small as not to make a single joint out of, got caught by the same dog and got cautioned :-(

Have fun !
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 18:02, 8 replies)
Phoenix Festival '96
This was my first festival, aged 18.

There was a bit of weed shortage at the time but we scored some seriously strong sensai the night before - a whole quarter. It was, and still is the, the finest I'd ever smoked. As luck would have it we scored an ounce of solid on the train down. We'd already split the sensai 50/50 and my mate was carrying our recently procurred oz.

The train arrives at Stratford-Upn -Avon where we are greeted by throngs of police and cries of 'single file please' and a sniffer dog going up and down the queue.

I got busted - not a great start to the weekend but not the end of the world. The loud cheer and applause from my group of 10-12 chums put a smile on my face and even the nice Customs & Excise chap did a little grin.

We camped behind the Milk Tent and had many randomm visitors over the course of the weekend due to our convenient location (in the shade) and its late night music.
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 17:02, 1 reply)
I thought i was being really clever, by finding a small area of FInsbury Park during a free festival to knock up a quick Jazz Woodbine. There i was, obliviously beavering away (i think the opium joint my mate had passed me outside Finsbury Park Tube didn't help matters ;-). The area i chose was behind a massive wall.

I heard rather stern "What do you think you are doing?"
I look up, and see a massive horse face looking back down. Fortunately this was before McCartneys one-legged fun-sack or i may have thought i had accidently spent the night with her.

Anyway, the horse was not a figment of any nightmare - it was a police horse. Once i had reconciled the voice with the little blue man on the horses back, it started to make some sense.

Off i tootled, oblivious until i saw my friends in the bushes pissing themselves laughing. Lucky this copper couldn't be arsed to deal with a spanked little whiteboy and didn't even get off his horse to show his disdain.

Close that one. Good job i wasn't in the middle of a worldwide renowned city with Police willing to beat dissidents and beatniks to within and inch of their.......oh wait a minute....
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 16:44, Reply)
One experience that stands out
was at Glastonbury in about 1990. It was still a proper festival back then as opposed to the Reading-style 3-day gig it is today. A massive travellers' field with infinitely better entertainment and a much more 'real festival' vibe than in the main fields...

It was about half five in the morning and the mighty Hawkwind took to the stage, playing their demented drug-rock to precisely their target audience - a motley bunch of rough-looking vagabonds if ever there was one. And me and my mates.

A couple of songs in and my pal Biddy, a normally quiet and unassuming fellow, suddenly basically attacked the massive crusty in front of us, grabbing him round the neck. Utter terror (amplified by a hefty dose of the old Laughing Sam's Dice) kicked in. What the fuck was he doing?

Then his 'victim' simply stepped aside and dear old Biddy crashed into the dirt. He'd only fainted and grabbed at the nearest thing on his way down, which happened to be this huge dude. Relief turned to annoyance at having shitted us up so much...which then turned to laughter as he announced he was going back to our tent for a lie down, and set off in 100% the wrong direction.

Another classic was the Magic Mushroom Festival in Wales. Chased by farmers, an American Werewolf style pub visit and constant freezing rain throughout. The site had a lightshow - but no music. It was truly surreal. I stayed alive for 3 days solely on brandy coffee and mushrooms, and our mate fell down a ravine.

Ahhh...the good old days....
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 16:40, Reply)
Another Roskilde one (if you haven’t been – go, the Danes are fucking mental!!!).

Walking into the festival sight one afternoon I see a row of pissed up Danish lads, sat on deck chairs, cheering loudly whenever an attractive member of the opposite sex walked by. Then, in the style of judges at an Olympic diving event, they’d hold up a board to give the passerby a mark out of ten. They appeared to be keeping score on a seperate peice of paper, attempting to rate the hottest hotty at Roskilde. This tickled me.

Just as my group and I are trudging closer a fella wearing a tracksuit top and bottoms legs it over from the milling crowd and stands defiently infront of the row of drunken pervs. There’s a bit of a stand off. Maybe his girlfriend had been the object of their letching – maybe they’d given her a shit score. Then, in one quick flash, the fella whips down his jogging pants, strips out of his top, and stands there, hands on hips, stark bollock naked accept for his trainers and rather fetching dayglo green socks. He jiggles his cock round for a bit and starts thrusting in and out, his pale arse bobbing round, as he proceeded to fuck the invisible woman. And he was fucking her hard.

There was a slight pause while the lads in the chairs considered this latest developement. Then, as one, they raised their boards.

The fucker only went and got 10 out of 10 from each of them.

(I’d have said he was a 5 at best – his cock was absolutely tiny).
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 16:25, 2 replies)
Last year me and a few mates from the office went to this festival. We didn't have any of the necessary camping gear so off to Tesco we went. We loaded up on everything in site for the weekend. The festival was awsome as the security folks got us front row spots for all of the best bands. We even hired a few ladies of the night to keep us company.

The best part? We expensed it all to the taxpayers!! Fools...

Yours truely,

G. Brown
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 16:12, Reply)
One time I went to a festival of sorts, but more a mass-meeting of like-minded individuals. A big bunch of us went down to Brighton and joined up with others from all over. It felt absolutely immense, being part of something bigger, after being part of a small group, and of course getting all the flak from my parents, pricks from town and so on.

We went to a nightclub and danced like maniacs, off our tits on speed. Then next day we went fucking mental and battered the crap out of some greasy bastards, until the police got involved and tried to bust us. There was a bird I'd had my eye on for ages, and we managed to get away into an alley, where - holy crap, my dreams had come true! - she let me give her a quick knee-trembler.

Problem was, after we went back onto the streets, I got busted by the fuzz. Then the bird went off with one of my mates. Bitch! Then when I tried to speak to her afterwards, she just told me to fuck off! I was so pissed off I crashed my scooter.
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 15:45, 5 replies)
Getting the best out of festivals
Went to my first festival in 1968 Reading it was great drugs sex more sex more drugs and yes the squalor as the years progressed my festival going dropped off, i couldn,t take the squalor any longer.
Eventually I stopped going altogether, then in the 1990s I was introduced to a guy who was looking for volunteers in the beer tent at Reading I said yes, a fucking revelation it was, we had our own compound I was allowed to bring my camper, we had hot showers, flush toilets that were not full of shit, 3 hot meals a day, and a couple of free beers thrown in, got lucky one year and ended up in the artistes bar backstage for 2 days.
After that festivals just never seemed the same.
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 15:45, 1 reply)
my worst experience was getting lost in Copenhagen for an hour and a half on the way to Roskilde
with a group of morons after a 4 hour stint in Christiania. I was so stoned I was hallucinating.

where you used to be able to get all your favourite drugs.

That was hellish. Ended up following these two girls from the bus stop because "they looked like they knew where they were going". they stopped and bought the biggest fucking ice cream cones I've ever seen at one point.
I think we then started to scare them by talking loudly about them as we followed.

At one point, while trying to communicate with a bus driver (only bloody european who doesn't speak english) that we wanted to get to the train station he responded by drawing a picture of a train on a leaflet, repeatedly underlining it and saying "Tog!" which I later discovered meant train. I may have said "I know it's a fucking train, how do we get to the station?" A kindly english speaking woman then said that this was our bus, and a little later on, that it was our stop.

It was only the wrong fucking station. Bitch.

I made an executive decision that we should try and follow the tracks (along the road, I'm not that stupid) and we would have a 50/50 chance of getting to central station. We succeeded fortunately and went on to have an incredible time.

Highlights included: Metallica, Iron Maiden, passing out on my face half in and half out of my tent.
Getting home to the station in Cardiff after a lot of travelling we are greeted by a taxi driven by a rasta, blaring reggae and with a block of hash the size of a very large block of hash on the dashboard.
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 14:01, 2 replies)
I have the opportunity
To go to Glasto this year in return for working 12 hours on, 12 hours off on a burger van for the weekend...

Is it worth it is the question?
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 13:59, 6 replies)
I'm not
festivaling this year, due to the usual lack of cash and the fact that I loathe tents, festival toilets and drunk people in stupid hats.

But, nonetheless, I am a student and as such tradition dictates I wear a scruffy wristband for six months of the year. So, in deference to this fact, I am wristbanded until the damn thing falls off or gets marinaded in barbecue sauce and eaten by rodents. In deference to an abominably middle-class streak, my wristband is from the Chelsea Flower Show.

(In mitigation, there's a long story behind it involving compulsory work experience, a well-known if not well-read Sunday newspaper and a stall giving out free posters. It made a change from MPS' EXPENSES OMG.)
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 13:56, Reply)
Glastonbury behind the scenes
I worked for Oxfam at Glastonbury in both 95 and 97. Instead of employing loads of stewards, what the organisers did was donate a load to Oxfam who in turn would recruit volunteers to do things like direct traffic, take tickets at the gate and stamp hands on the way out. (or direct ticketless people to the latest area where we heard the wall had fallen over)

The benefit was that you got to the festival for nothing, got a field to camp in that was a bit quieter than the main throng and got a few free meals in exchange for three shifts on the gates or car parks, only one of which would be during the festival itself.

We also got to wear a big yellow bin bag and see some pretty scary attempts at getting in for nothing. AT one gate there was a huge collection of ropes, grappling hooks and home made wall climbing equipment that the security guards had collected in the last hour alone!

One night we were over near a section of the inside wall when a few bags came flying over. This was usual, they'd chuck over any luggage then attempt to scramble over. We weren't security and were under strict instuctions not to apprehend anyone, so if they made it we usually gave them a cheer or marks out of ten.

Security patrolled in land rovers that drove in a circle round the site between the outer and inner walls, so some unlucky punters who had made it over wall one, chucked thier luggage over wall two, suddenly found themselves in the headlights and had to scarper with nothing but the shirts on their backs.

This time though, the luggage wasn't followed by people, but by a huge dog that had obviously been lobbed over. It soared over the wall, ears flapping, and a slightly surprised look on its face. We then heard the roar of an engine, some swearing and some footsteps running away. They had chucked over the dog first and got caught! I'm sure the poor thing had a great time on its own though. I saw it a few times, happily getting fed by most people who passed it, don't know if it ever got re-united with its owner though, but if you had been thrown over a huge security wall by your master, would you want to go back?!

Other notable moments were ...

A welsh guy turning away Page and Plant, because he'd 'never heard of the buggers.'

Constantly walking into the slam door toilets to see a girl perched on the seat, open to the world

Using some of the found rope to tie a drunk bloke to the chair he had fallen asleep on, then watching him wake up and stagger off for a piss, not knowing it was still on his back

Smoking something I shouldn't have in 95 and falling asleep in my tent, with my bare legs outside in the sun for most of the afternoon.

Turning up in 97 with a small backpack full of shorts and tee-shirts, and a hope that the weather would improve.

Giving people tips as to how to improve the UV stamp they'd tried to draw on the back of their hand.

I'll watch it on the telly this year!
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 13:49, 4 replies)
I went...
...to the Underage Festival.

It was awesome.

G. Glitter
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 13:22, 1 reply)
Free, gratis and for nothing!
I got to go to Glastobury 2000 (the dry year) for the price of a telephone call - YAY!

There I was, 21 years old sat at home watching The Priory hosted by Jamie Theakston and Zoe Ball, guest starring Kylie Minogue when the weekly competition appears on screen: identify the reason the person was famous. Easy, thinks I: it was the chappie who reads out the footballs scores of a weekend. I knew this because he'd appeared on a programme not less than a week before.

Verily I dialled the number and chirpily gave my answer to the friendly lady at the other end of the line, who sounded incredulous I knew, and so asked. I told her what I've just told you. She took my details and within the hour I was watching the rest of the show when teeny, tiny Kylie reads my name out (and pronounced it correctly to boot) as the excitable winner of a free pair of glorious Glasto tickets! YAY!

I spent that weekend enjoying the delights of The Happy Mondays (overrated), Reef, Coldplay, Slimboy Fat, Kelis (Best. Set. Ever. Kaleidescope is far too overlooked as a debut album), The Orb and Basement Jaxx. (And to this day my brother has never forgiven me for choosing Basement Jaxx over David Bowie on the Pyramid Stage on the Sunday night as my entertainment of choice.)

The only festival I've ever been to and I didn't have to pay! Plus, Kylie read my name out on national television!
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 12:44, 2 replies)
One time at the Leeds Festival years ago (when Pearl Jam headlined, fucked if I remember the year; can barely remember my own surname most of the time), I was stood round on bag guarding duty; essentially my mates had all fucked off in the pursuit of a) beer, b) a poo, c) a wee, d) food, or – and this was stretching it a bit on account of them all being uglier than a troop of chimpanzees who’d been involved in a particularly nasty car crash involving fire – e) some sweet hot snatch action.

I was getting pissed off. I’d been stood round for about half an hour looking like an Essex bird in Rumours on handbag guarding duty. (Ever tried looking mean and moody when you’re essentially guarding a few ruck sacks full of baby wipes, bottles of water, KP crisps, a shitload of those little tubs of ketcup we’d nicked from McDonalds to help flavour the utter shite food they sold, and a couple of packets of jammy dodgers?) Just not fucking possible...

To make matters worse the mighty Pearl Jam were about to come out on stage. There was an air of awed silence... And instead of twatting my way to the front to dance about like a spectacular twat, I’m stuck at the back, looking like a single parent guarding the broods gear as they fuck off and have some fun.

Then there’s a surge behind me as the guitar techs come out on stage and start twaning about with Jeff Aments bass. I get knocked clean off my feet by the big fucker behind me and land heavily on the bags. My head actually disappeared inside one of the open bags for a few seconds. Fuck me. I was pissed off. This man mountain reaches out an arm, apologies for inadvertently knocking a skinny streak of piss like myself off his feet like he was swatting a teeny tiny fly, and then he stops dead and looks scared. “You ok?” He says. I start mumbling something then he says: “You’ve hit you’re head, mate. You’re bleeding like FUCK!!!”

I reach up and feel a wetness caked in my hair, feel something sticky dribble down my forehead and over the bridge of my nose. There’s shitloads of claret pouring out of me. Oh, fucking MARVELLOUS!!! Then, a little of my blood reaches my lips and trickles inside. It’s not blood. It’s tomato sauce – several of the vast quantities of the pesky little containers packed inside the open ruck sack belonging to one of my mate’s have burst on impact and splattered me.

“You sure you’re ok, mate?” said the big fucker who’d accidentally knocked me off my feet.

Now, I was pissed off like a muthafucka on so many different levels. Don’t know why I did it, but I just snapped back: “Do I fucking look, OK? I’m bleeding like a cunt here!”

With that the big dude lifts me up and carts me off, another one of his mates (even bigger and harder looking than the first fella), comes and holds me up from the other side, he says: “Don’t worry about you’re bags. A few of our group’ll look after them. We need to get you over to St. John’s Ambulance. You look fucking awful, mate.”

I started to protest, to say I was ok, but it wasn’t any good. The two fellas literally carried me to the first aid tent. They explained what had happened to the old lady in the uniform; that I’d hit my head and was proabably concussed, and what with the blood they thought it best to get me here as quickly as possible.

“Thanks, lads,” I said. “You can leave me to it now. I’ll be fine from here,” I said, silently shitting myself.

“Nah, mate – wouldn’t dream of it. We’re gonna make sure you’re ok first.”

I was put onto an examination bench. Another St John’s Ambulance volunteer put on a pair of rubber gloves and started poking round on my scalp: “Does this hurt?” They said sternly.

“Erm... yes....?” I replied meekly, my two saviours standing just to one side, arms crossed, looking concerned. It was then I got a really good look at them. They looked like the two dudes out of Right Said Fred, only on more steroids and not at all camp. They were, to put it short, fucking hard. I gulped and felt a bit sick.

Then the ambulance person said: “Can’t find any wound.... hmmmm... funny....” then, slowly, they lifted a glove hand, smeared in red, to their nostrils and took a plaintiff sniff. After a short pause the kindly looking lady said: “This is tomato ketchup.”

I shrugged, “Is it? Erm.... Are you sure?”

The two lads, my saviours, the good samaritans, looked a bit confused. Then one of them said simply: “You fucking cunt,” and they left.

And I watched Pearl Jam from the very edge of the crowd, keeping one eye out for the hard looking lads, and another out for one of my chimp mates – so I could explain why I’d rather kill my own mother than go back and retreive our bags from where we’d left them.
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 12:21, 9 replies)
Big Day Out
Milton Keynes, back in 2001 (? not sure, can't remember the date), when Metallica headlined with Manson in the special guest slot. The bizarre experience I had involved getting into the venue. As you can imagine with such a festival, a lot of metaller types are wandering around, chains and spikes galore. There's me in my New Rocks, black combats and a chain strapped to my trews when I get stopped by the gate security and am asked to remove it before I can go in. Just a few seconds later, a guy with a spikey dog collar walks past and gets in un-challenged.

Not sure why they thought my dangling chain was more of a threat than a spiked dog collar but I've never worked security, so I've no idea how their mind works. So I had to remove it and ditch it before I could get in. One of my friends afterwards said I should have said (in an Ali G stylee) "Is it cos I is black?" but I'm too much of a coward to be honest.

Not the greatest story but certainly one that stands out in my mind as being a very "WTF?" moment for me.
(, Wed 10 Jun 2009, 12:19, 7 replies)

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