arseholes who went wild at university or lost
themselves travelling take great pride in telling us how theyve
calmed down. Wheres the joy in that?
frequent points: "I used to smoke that stuff at
university" and "I dont go to clubs any more."
Whats this reactionary rubbish? Why, its the postgraduate
masses assimilating almost imperceptibly into parent- and state-endorsed
habits, and left willing prey to the marketing whims of a million
leisure conglomerates. Have you tried that new drink yet?/have you
been in that new bar??//theres really great discounts on this
new gym Ive just joined
. No, no! NO!!
this widespread erroneous belief that tokin, droppin,
poppin and snortin stop after Graduation? Is it guilt,
successful social brainwashing or mislead beliefs about the role
of higher education? Its certainly cultural fascism when
those above points assault your ears. Listen, Carling Dave and
Chardonnay Kate, this is a LIFESTYLE thing here. The weed, the
pills, the whatevers theyre habits that are often
picked up at that age (like booze), but that doesnt mean
theyre tossed away as your real world arrives
in itself an attitude that fundamentally reaffirms the
mistaken belief that university is just three years in fantasy
often the implication is that you havent grown up
if you continue to indulge. Its quite the opposite. The
caners are looking at their current life-experiences and arguing
that there is a continued place for such recreational drug use.
The fear factor is relevant, as the scare-tactics of our cultural
benefactors obviously work to the point that the assimilators
believe its something they can only do in the cocoon of
too often the assimilators can only offer pure nostalgia for tales
of indulgence. "I was so fucked that time in uni," or
"we used to do bongs all the time in Halls." Got any
contemporary anecdotes, lads (not ones that involve 15 pints)?
Its staggering that people who have seen the other side
of the recreational coin can so readily accept these narrow fun
confines. Theyre denying themselves pleasure, which seems
pretty irresponsible to me. As for the uber-lads in the
Sherman shirts, to them Acid House was the Chemistry lab at school
and beer is the permanent poison for intoxication.
Carling Dave and Chardonnay Kate, the caners can get battered
every night on the herb and do their Mac-job just as well as you
while your standards seem to slip dramatically when
youre sweating out the booze of successive nights of being
on the sauce. And theres some amazing double
standards at work here, which directly correspond to the social
diktat of "legal drugs good, illegal drugs bad". Time
and again, I hear the line of "youre smoking too much
of that stuff" or "you want to stay away from that"
when theyve made a mockery of the weekly advised
alcohol limit by Tuesday night. Im all for a freedom of
choice when it comes to consumption, but people are just trying
to comfort themselves because their drug of choice is legal, so
therefore "I cant be an addict, can I?" Detox
is at least as painful as the comedown.
its amazing how they rediscover a taste after a few lagers
"can I have a toke on that", "can you get
me some for next week". In both cases, mate, NO! And people
wonder why they have an adverse reaction to marijuana when they
want a toke after 5 export lagers, 2 alco-pops, a double whisky
and a cigar.
that were likely to want in to their lifestyle. As Richard
Benson observed in a Guardian article last year, in recent
years theres been much more promotion of neutral drinking
spaces, to attract the female drinker away from her Friends
video and sofa. This is all fair enough, but the pubs that now
dominate this land are necessarily bland, uniform venues, with
the deliberate side-affect of alienating the Narcos of both sexes.
Of course we dont want to go in there, the music and atmosphere
are rigidly set on one mode of enjoyment; you can expect the usual
Lighthouse Family/Moby/Texas suspects; even the foods as
bland as fuck. No wonder the Shoreditch district of London is
seen as a cultural oasis theres no chain bars (similarly
Leeds Call Lane, M/Crs Northern Quarter).
influences a wider point. Playing the safe social card influences
most of their life-decisions music, reading, politics,
its got to be COMFORTING, affirmative of their status quo
and often nostalgic in nature, again. And dont even begin
to mention the highbrow arts.
theres the reaction from another middle-youth tribe: those
who seem to spend their time solely in flash bars up and down
the country, have a liking for expensive alcohol, regardless of
taste, and an even bigger weakness for cocaine. This jet set look
down on anyone who isnt face down in some nosebag or messy
on cocktails and champagne. For the Flash Bar crowds, substance
is irrelevant, so the music in the places they frequent tends
leans to the insipid jazz-house variety not played loud
enough to be the focus of course. You may have seen last years
shameless Bar Grooves compilation attempting to define
a zeitgeist already well past its sell by-date (the daddy of them
all, Manchesters Dry Bar, sprung up fifteen years
ago). Then theres Amalgamation of Sounds, djs capable of
digging out great tracks but also djs happy to be residents to
the doyens of the desperate Met Bar. And what a surprise many
of them are members bars, although this makes the decision
NOT to go in them even easier than it already was.
not that I have a problem with the Bugle, far from it. I just
find that it is far more productive when used as part of a balanced
chemical diet. Whats wrong with combining ALL these things??
The drug market is a sweet shop, and the dealers encourage Pick
N Mix. Not surprisingly, this open attitude seems
to be more on display outside of the suffocating, self-conscious
environs of London.
with my wardrobe of tatty anoraks and tattier trainers Im
not considered Flash Bar material, and its positively life-affirming
to get those down-stares from the bugle crowd, or from those happy
to take the comfortable options down The Slug & Lettuce. You
wont find me down in there or some other vomit venue, but
more likely among weed and beers at my flat. Finding a good pub
that hasnt been converted into the latest instantly recognisable
Bass or Whitbread brand is becoming a frustrating search. And
indeed, the number of companions willing to adventure
away from their fave leisure brands dwindles through time too.
Theres loads of good pubs out there that arent sterile.
Those off the beaten track beat the mass-produced tack any day.
all these obstacles, its no wonder those who choose quite
rationally to maintain the narcotic lifestyle into their late
20s and beyond often do so in the pleasure of their own house.
Youve got the records/cds you like, all your mates, the
necessary narcotics and cheap alcohol in the fridge, why
compromise yourself with the hassles of the outside demi-monde
when all the decadence you need is there at home for you? Either
that, or another familiar tactic: go out early to warm up then
push on through at home. Bars and clubs all close eventually,
all too early in most cases, the front room never does. Matthew
Collins Altered States details a trend in early 90s
Manchester, whereby people deserted the clubs, mainly to indulge
in cocaine-led parties in their own houses.
whats the big fear about clubbing? You can do all the things
you do in a bar or club, but until later on and without the underlying
sexism and racism that infests your Jo-Average pub, and distinctly
less threat of violence as theres far less friendly
aggressive behaviour (see Vizs Going-out booklet).
Oh I forget, the beerheads seem to choose EVERY Saturday to go
on a big one which ends at 10.30 as someone calls
a curry. Variation, PLEASE.
yeah, its maddening that people seem so happy to assimilate
so quickly after their wild student years. But fuck
them, theyre clearly adhering to the parentally-ascribed
path, where having a laugh has its place, but way
behind your double-edged destiny: marriage and career. Free thinkers
are seen as subversives to these corporate cock-suckers. And the
Flash Bar cocainers can fuck off too, their conspicuous attitude
to consumption shows us its just another show of materialism.
Lets hope they get weevil attacks and start scratching the
skin off their limbs: they wont be welcome among the Phillip
Starck-esque minimalism and Veuve Cliquot then.
better off without both of them, I reckon.