I did not attend the wedding of my old Camden nemesis Plastic Dave, who as some of you may recall had no teeth but was eight inches on the slack, and which took place some nine years ago now. ‘Anton’ did, however, and recalled the event last Saturday evening amid the first wedding we’ve held at Runton Hall, as we shovelled pizza at sundry guests and attendees. Plastic Dave’s wedding sounds like a thoroughly enjoyable affair. Unfortunately, an affair that was doubtless also thoroughly enjoyable put paid to the happy union after four months, when the rear storage area of Camden Middle Yard become the venue for bleak liaisons between Dave and his business partner’s sister, who had what we may reasonably assume to be an accommodating ‘rear storage area’ of her own, judging by her claimed carnal preferences. ‘Pretty, but an arse like a bin liner’ concluded ‘Anton’, handing pizza to a bridesmaid and further enhancing the lilting air of romance drifting from the Fallow Field where the newlyweds were enjoying their first dance, which I believe was Maybe I’m Amazed by Paul McCartney.
I was happy to report to the Trustees during this morning’s weekly board meeting that our Runton Bollywood wedding was a tremendous success. All concerned had a marvellous time and the whole thing went on till dawn. It also raised a healthy chunk of cash for the estate, even after numerous expenses and wages for me, Joe, and ‘Anton’, who drunk heavily for several hours while generally jollying things along. Becka was also on the payroll for the day, amusing younger guests with face painting, which sadly did not extend to painting each child to look like one of the other children, as was my suggestion for causing chaos among parents and spicing up the end of the evening. Saturday Night Feverishness and their Seventies/Eighties covers went down a storm, especially their stirring rendition of Adam and the Ants’ Kings of the Wild Frontier. In case you are unfamiliar, this allies a constitutionally untenable claim for ‘…a new Royal family’ consisting of insects with the assertion that Caucasians are, racially speaking, displaced Native Americans. I’m not sure it would get recorded now.
I once chatted to Adam Ant at some length at Camden Market, on an afternoon when Plastic Dave ruined several mugs of my tea by putting his cock in them, as was his hobby. Adam was (and is) a familiar sight around NW5 – like Plastic Dave’s cock, come to think of it, but far more welcome: soft spoken, articulate and funny, and quite open about the fact that he is out to lunch, breakfast, dinner, tea and elevenses. Former Ant guitarist Marco Pirroni, when asked about Adam’s perilous mental state on a 2007 documentary, said that he first realised things might be on the slide when he started dressing up as a highwayman and telling people to join the Insect Nation, but this meant little where I grew up. Adam and the Ants were so popular among the older kids at my school (who were twelve and otherwise solid Madness fans) that correction fluid was banned because they kept painting white lines across their faces with it, most memorably prior to a school photo taken in, I should think, 1981. By the time I was twelve it had been reinstated, only to be withdrawn again when it was discovered that with minimal concealment it was possible to sniff it for hours in class and be unable to stand up by morning playtime. Happy days.
Anyway. Weddings are nice, and the bride, groom and guests looked marvellous in their Bollywood gear, hired at massive cost by the wedding planner I employed to plan the wedding instead of me. Glampers, wandering over to see what the fuss was about, were cordially invited to join the celebrations, as were a bunch of yoga enthusiasts from Great Yarmouth who had arrived that afternoon. By the end of the night, pissed Flat Earthers were bopping happily among the guests, even when Saturday Night Feverishness played I Won’t Let The Sun Go Down On Me by Nik Kershaw. The sun can’t go down on a flat earth, can it, and stauncher Flat Earthers consider this sort of thing to be propaganda put about by NASA. Yes I know, but they do, and I have to nod indulgently as they explain why, in the line of duty. A flat-earth compliant lyric in this instance would be ‘I won’t let the sun leave the part of the sky directly above where you are standing and transverse to the other end of the planet’, which is simply not as catchy. A few Flat Earthers even got hold of other guests, which they probably didn’t bargain for when they arrived at Runton for a weekend of debunking the Theory of Relativity again, including a couple of gay blokes who doubtless saw the night out with acts of Greek love under the peaceful East Anglian firmament. We have another, smaller, wedding booked on the 8th July, but I shall not be around for it as I will be leaving Hackney that evening at 20:00 to ride to the Suffolk Coast, it being the annual Dunwich Dynamo. Between then and now we shall be returning the Fallow Field back to Sevastopol and sundry other animals, and arranging a nice Treasure Hunt for this week’s Forest Schoolers to get involved in, well away from the west and south sides of the estate where Graham will be hunting rabbits with ferrets, dogs and Christ alone knows what else. I might let Archie get stuck in, but suspect he’d be more interested in chasing the other dogs than chasing rabbits, the bloody hippy.
Photards: Top – one of several structures around the estate which, unlike Plastic Dave’s marriage, may not be entirely beyond repair.
Inset top – Adam and the Ants. Hard to believe they were pitched at twelve year olds by the record industry of the day.
Inset lower – Some animals. I don’t know what they want.