It’s Here! The Saturday Night Report.
Out on the 8.10 bus, home on the 11.10 which came at 11.13 ish.
It was a strange night. My first port of call, the Cross Keys, had so few people in the bar, it would have struggled to live up to its name if everyone inside belonged to a swinger’s club and had thrown their house keys into a wine glass for their end of evening frolics.
The next pub was a bit busier; full of fifty to sixty year olds and the odd bunch of twenty somethings out celebrating a friend’s birthday, wedding, new job or divorce. I’d never seen the DJ before, and to be honest I wouldn’t shed a tear if I never saw him again. He was in his fifties, with a thickening paunch attempting to make up for this thinning hair. For some reason, he seemed to think the mainly, elderly clientele, were desperate to listen to nonstop trance music that might have gone down well in an ecstasy-addled brain of a twenty-year-old in the late eighties, but didn’t do much for the Tramadol addled brains that made up the bulk of the gathering. Some old gals were giving it a go though, feet still, bodies swaying with open fingered hands moving in front of their faces like Uma Thurman in Pulp Fiction. Then, horribly, at some unseen signal, they began thrusting their pelvises in a brutal parody of the time warp. Good luck to them, it’s all right me taking the piss, but it’s them that won’t be able to get downstairs without the help of a stair lift on Sunday morning. There will be so many cracking knee and hip joints in Bullwell, it will sound like the rifle range has opened early.
The rocker pub was in full swing. There was a new Death Metal band on, they were called something like, Satan’s Scrotum. (if they weren’t, they should have been.) When I say, new, I mean, new as in just starting out. It showed too. The Death Metal was a healthy 8, on my DM scale. Badly decomposed, but with still enough meat on the bone to keep the bluebottles happy. These boys are trailblazers, no doubt about that. They appear to have invented a whole new musical genre. Death Country. It’s the first time I’ve heard a Kenny Rogers song performed by deep, thrashing out-of-tune, guitars with the added bonus of a Devil’s growl vocal. It took until verse three before I realised what it was.
The clientele were the usual mix of wrinkly, leather-clad bikers, younger, pasty faced goths, geriatric punks and elderly transvestites. One white-haired old guy, wore a leather jacket with hundreds of shiny metal studs on the back in the shape of a skull. The studs were so sharp in fact that when a friend of his patted him heartily on the back, his hand had to be levered off with the aid of a putty knife that some careless workmen had left behind the bar.
Two bald transvestites hold court in there at the weekend. One, sports a bald head, a wispy-long, Chinese style, goatee beard, knee high tartan socks, a fake-leather blouson and a skirt so pleated it must have taken him all afternoon to iron. His mate, had one strip of real hair across the back of his otherwise shaven head, attached to which were strands of long, blond, plaits that reached his waist. (Sometimes he weaves strings of brightly coloured beads into the hair strip instead.) He wore a kilt style skirt, with black stockings and black, patent leather, six-inch stiletto heeled boots.
I really salute these guys. They’ve dressed this way for years, God knows how much crap they must get when they step outside of this bar. Inside it they are not only accepted, but they get all the crumpet too. They are always surrounded by nubile young girls. Whether they’re attracted to the guys themselves, or just want make up tips, I don’t know, and I don’t really care. What I do know is, they must have balls of steel to brave the streets of Nottingham dressed like that. Heroes come in all shapes and sizes.
When the Death Metal band paused to tighten up their loose, out of tune strings, and decide whether to introduce Death Reggae to the world in their next set, I slipped out and headed back to the Disco pub. A septuagenarian lady, who, half an hour earlier had been thrusting herself to orgasm on the dance floor, was leaning against the bar with a pained expression on her face.
‘Are you all right love?’ I inquired.
‘Just help me to that seat over there, will you? My bloody knee’s locked up.’
I helped her across to a table full of empty pint glasses and she eased herself onto a seat, lifted her leg onto the stool in front, and sighed. I transferred her drink from the bar to the table and stepped away. A few moments later, she was joined by her friend, who had just nipped for a pee. She was dressed in a black, sparkly mini dress, high heels and a blonde wig that had slipped badly over one ear. Her false teeth rattled when she spoke and her voice was so crackly it sounded like it was coming from the speaker of a 1920s crank-handle record player, but she had a memory of an elephant.
‘You were in last week, wearing a maroon Harrington, jacket,’ she said.
I nodded and smiled.
‘Thank God you’ve dressed your age this week. I can’t stand old men who try to dress like teenagers. It’s pathetic.’
I thanked her for her advice, finished my pint and headed to the Bell.
The Harrington jacket is going to the charity shop come Monday.