Saturday, April 17, 2010

#161: Great Wall

No prizes for guessing where we were last night. An interesting night out, both enjoyable and quite tragic all at once. It felt kind of odd to be in my early 40s and discovering that I was amongst the youngest in the room, surely the ‘80s weren’t that far away?

The main reasons I went were because the last time I saw one of these shows, at the Eagle On The Hill, we spent the evening hanging out with Brian Canham and Dale Ryder, and managed to close the joint down for good. It was one of those perfect evenings really, complete with a drunk girl who was professing her love for one of my oldest pals who has the emotional capability of a house plant in such situations. Even one of my pals who didn’t know my oldest pal at that stage warned the drunken girl that she was wasting her time. It had no effect; she’s still hanging around, four years later. And four years later myself, my better half and one of my closest chums found ourselves at Norwood, watching, as my lad termed it, “Three sad old men in a bar.”

Close, lad, but no cigar. One of the other reasons I went was because out of the Three Stooges on offer I’d never seen Scott Carne live, and I’ve always loved his voice. ‘Change In Mood’ is one of those lost classics of Australian ‘80s music and, thankfully, he still has his voice. Onstage the entertainment was just fine. The show started with Brian ‘Bogan’ Mannix, followed by Dale Ryder and then Carne. Two songs each, then each back for a cover version. Now I’ve spent the better part of a decade trying to convince my pal that Ryder secretly wanted to be Michael Hutchence, to no avail, but last night when Ryder came out for his cover version, well, blow me down if it wasn’t 'New Sensation' by INXS. Whoops, point proven! After a short break the guys came back, sang their bigger hits and then joined forces for some retro tunes, ala karaoke night, only with two guys who can actually sing and one guy who was clearly there for the entertainment value. No a bad evening out really.

Well, not a bad evening unless you were in the crowd. We had to deal with a tall berk who insisted on screaming ‘factoids’ to his pals, that is when he wasn’t dancing like a gorilla having a seizure. His pals insisted on singing the one song, ‘The Party’ by Mannix, no matter who else was on stage or what they were singing. And almost everyone in our immediate vicinity was talking about the presence of The Weather Girl From Channel 7. After a while I felt sorry for The Weather Girl From Channel 7, who clearly just wanted a decent night out with some friends, but wasn’t going to get it. From the two drunks at the bar who insisted that they were going to double team her to the clowns that kept asking her for a photo, a dance, a spit swap, or the charmer that outright asked her for a ‘quick root outside’ (presumably behind the dumpster, the usual mating spot of such establishments), The Weather Girl From Channel 7 suffered dearly. Funnily enough she kept giving me glances, but that could be my imagination or the Vodka or perhaps she was wondering why I, a male, wasn’t trying to come on to her. But she was the tip of the iceberg.

I was one of around 15 males in a room surrounded by various degrees of what might have once been described as ‘cougars’ but were more like worn out tiger skin rugs or geriatric Meerkats. The amount of cattle that poured into the room was incredible. There were varying degrees of sadness and tragic on show, from the woman who we expected to rip the girls out at any moment to the one who leapt on ‘stage’ to start kissing Mannix and had to be dragged off by security to the ones who were on the prowl and the ones who I’m not sure if they’d ever had better days. I think if you were single and didn’t pick up last night you either have to jump ship or realise that possibly 80% of the females present had left hubby at home with the kids. Frankly it was like one giant Hens Party for late 40s and early 50s girls, most of whom left their dignity at home, if they ever had any.

As we get older we either get more at ease with ourselves or just don’t care anymore. Personally I think it’s more the latter. Still there was entertainment both on and off the stage and a good time was had by us three at least. And I hope that The Weather Girl From Channel 7 has recovered and got away clean, but somehow I doubt she’ll be mentioning this the next time she’s on the idiot box.

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