Tuesday, September 4, 2012
I check my pocket for the second time, the third time and I have the tickets. I’ve already spent the time from Beckenham Junction to Gypsy Hill unable to find them. Losing things is kinda my thing. But I’ve got them. It’s OK.
We get off the train at Brixton. We turn right, and right again. It’s dark, cold. Some men pogo out of the door of a pub as we walk past. We follow them. One has an Iron Maiden jacket on. We know we’re going in the right direction. We think. Matthew taps him on the elbow, that’s as far as he can reach. Hey you going to the gig? He is, yeah. We know where we’re going now. Matthew says I like your jacket and the guy says cheers, it fucken rocks, dun’it? And Matthew says something about Blaze Bayley or something and I zone out, I’m not metal, I’m indie, and I really don’t know what they’re talking about.
We walk down the road in Brixton, the main one, the high street or whatever, on our left we see the lights and the entrance of the Academy, skulking on a side road, and we cross and see Natalie and Jenny and Marie, who are in the year above us a school, and their already in the queue and we say hello, but then we realise that we’re not really being encouraged to jump the queue with them, so we skulk along the side of the building to the end and we wait for the queue to start moving.
Inside we get served, and get served again, and a grunge band play and we get served again, and we’re kinda tipsy, and we go and stand with Natalie and Jenny and Marie, and we stop being so shy, and Jenny starts getting off with some older guy near her, and we’re kinda jealous but we don’t say anything about it, and then another band come on, and they are PUNK and me and Matthew run down the front and jump up and down and up and down then they’re finished and it’s all too quick and sudden, and fuzzy, and we buy some more pints, and then we wait and wait and wait and the anticipation is turning into anxiety and impatience and someone says something about fucking Welsh wankers and too busy shagging sheep backstage and Matthew, who has been to some gigs before, he reckons they won’t be long ‘cos the roadies have sorted out the stage and it’s all ready and then, finally, 50 minutes, an hour, three pints of lager and lots of nervous jumping later they deign to walk onto the stage and we forgive them. We love them.
We push, spin, jump and shove: praise, incant, respond. We recite lyrics learnt by rote, by devotion. I hit the floor during Motorcycle Emptiness. I don’t think I care anymore.