Notes From a Fragile Island intro

October 7 2004

After work meet up with Fashion Andy and Adam X for a beer at The Goose On The Market. Dreadful huge screens dominate the pub displaying football games that mean nothing to me. It is very noisy. The beer is as cheap as the clientele. Fashion Andy moans about his girlfriend. Adam X has a job as a chauffeur coming up. I find it hard to believe (for some reason) that he can drive… although I can imagine him at once in a peaked cap. He tells me that he won’t be required to wear a peaked cap. He has huge teeth.

Thankfully, surprisingly, Wayne H arrives and the evening enlivens. We purchase some cocaine from a boy he recognises who has stood all night next to us feeding a fruit machine and we take it in turns to snort thick lines from the ceramic toilets. The toilets in this place seem to be quite a hike (as with all Wetherspoon pubs) – is this because they are all old banks?

We head to The Black Sheep Bar. It is hip hop night (Bangers). Get drunk and high. The toilet doors have been taken off to discourage drug taking in the stalls, but all this really does is discourage shitting. I dread to think.

Dancing. Wayne is asked to leave for some reason (is it his dancing?) and now we are outside and he is arguing in a quiet and measured tone with the bouncers. Instead of fighting them as we fear, he pretends to phone up a drive-by! He is really quite convincing – giving descriptions of the bouncers to whoever is at the end of the phone (!?). One of the bouncers, panicking, tries to talk him out of it! We leave and stagger toward Adam X’s studio in south Croydon. Every police car that speeds by, lights flashing, wailing, toward central Croydon I assume to be headed for The Black Sheep Bar ‘massacre’!

We stay up all night, scouring ashtrays and eventually finishing the cocaine and a tiny bottle of saki. Straight to work from Adam X’s. Borrow a tee shirt with an image of a bear riding a bicycle on it. The bear is made out to be saying, ‘Look, no hands!’ But my eyes scream otherwise.

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