Goodbyes of the 13th

Further to the last entry, I suppose it’s something of an achievement to be singled out for having funny hair in Camden Town. That perennially youthful hub of North London where the current fashion is for young men to wear their hair in a kind of spilt paint-pot effect. It’s as if their hair has not so much been styled as thrown onto their heads from a great height.

I do like the trend for young men wearing scarves at all times, though. Often indoors. A couple of days ago I saw a fashionable looking boy on the Archway Road with his Ugg-ed up girlfriend. Not just a tangle of scarves and skinny jeans, but sunglasses on his head too. In mid December.

It’s never a bad thing for young men to have to feminize themselves to fit in. Though I’m obviously biased. Make-up is often a leap too far, though. One feels sorry for the ‘brickies in drag’ of the 70s glam rock era, or the 60s hippies who really wanted to be lads, or those backing musicians in 80s New Romantics bands who were not at one with their eyeshadow. Scarves are more do-able.

The fashion also favours the boyish side of androgyny (and again, I’m biased). A scarf hides an Adam’s Apple, or corrects Nature’s omission of one.


Where was I? (All over the place, today, Mr E. Still, carry on.)

Yes, the last Fosca gig at Islington. It was fine, no one died (Oh do stop that!). Maybe not as many people as one might hope. Alex S says the heavy rain of the 13th definitely made some people stay at home. He quotes Frank Skinner:

‘You can spend your life trying to be popular, but at the end of the day, the size of the crowd at your funeral will be largely dictated by the weather.’

It’s so true. And it was a funeral, after all. Some kind comments afterwards: great sound, great performance, shame we’re splitting up. That it would be even more of a shame if I never took to the stage again. Well, we’ll see.

Matt Haynes says our one-off line-up and going out with a one-off vinyl single in 2008 reminded him of the equally perverse last Field Mice gig in 1991 or so. There, the band aired brand new songs which hadn’t been released then and never were released afterwards (and remain unreleased even now, I think…). Here’s to perversity.

I’m just glad we managed one last London gig at all. That’ll do, Fosca, that’ll do.

I stand around afterwards with a box of the new single and last album, in case anyone wants to buy them. And as it happens, they do. To my absolute surprise I attract a small queue. I sell all the copies I’ve brought. Including, by accident, my own copies. Oops. And I sign some, too. I’m getting good at signing things in noisy places (or if I’m feeling a bit deaf), asking people to quickly write their name on a bit of scrap paper nearby, then confidently spelling their name correctly on their book or record.

Boy H had to go back to the US (and snow) the same evening. Pretty much for good. What with him and Fosca I had to deal with two big goodbyes in one night. I plumped for my usual tactic. I got a bit drunk.

So: single again. Alone, but not lonely. All kinds of invites from friends who are also spending the festive break in London – dinner there, drinks here, a concert of carols if I fancy it. Too lucky to grumble.

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