Eat Thisby Andrew Thompson / 18.12.2009
This is all just too weird. I mean, totally fucking bizarre. There’s a woman on stilts, mammoth creaking stilts, probably 3 metres off the ground, precariously carving her way through the tables and chairs, careful not to crush the trendoids in their small cocktail dresses and loud shirts, however tempting it might have been. She’s dressed to the nines, and holding something in her right hand that she gives short sharp tugs on at regular intervals. A leash. One of those goddamn retractable dog leashes. And at the end of it, is a poodle. A man-sized poodle, on all fours, also 3 metres off the ground. In white garters that, from behind, looks more like a adult diaper. “Cume en Fifi”, she scolds the poor hound in a thick French accent. “Cume en!” And she gives the leash another sharp yank. On the ground below her, a young lass in a full wedding dress skips through her legs down the narrow aisle, sort of weeping, sort of flailing, into the dark depths of the hall, past a woman with 8 exposed breasts, towards massive black and white projections of vintage flicks of beautiful ditsy blonde broads with perky tits.
I glanced around the small room, trying to establish whether I’m having another one of those Tim Burton meets Fear and Loathing dreams that I’ve been trying so hard to ignore, and, more importantly, trying to decide whether I really wanted to be here. I’m interrupted mid-thought by a polite, gentlemanly waiter, with a meticulously maintained ‘tache, dressed like a bell boy with one of those red fez hats on his bean, who cracks open a free bottle of red, explains exactly how the three course dinner is going to go down, and then a little about the wonders that are soon to unfold before our eyes. He’s cool and calm but slightly on edge, and trying hard to get us to slide into the zone that you clearly have to be in to appreciate this parallel world. And so I listen intently, all while sipping politely on the pear flavoured champagne with what I think was a melted marshmallow floating on top, that we’d snatched at the door.
And then, magically, the slight, gentlemanly waiter with the fez on his bean disappeared into the abyss, and in his place slunk a big, silent oaf; not all together grotesquely massive, but somewhat impressively sized. He daintily slid a full deck of sealed playing cards from his pocket, which he silently paraded magician style in front of our sceptical eyes. And, even though I saw it coming – I’d read the Sunday Times article with all the spoilers – when the feigned magic trick turned into a front for him to rip the entire deck in half, in two solid twists of the wrists, I had to work hard on not looking too impressed.
From there, everything spun into a blur. Not because of the pear flavoured champagne with a melted marshmallow on top, or because of the generously strong Jamaican Mule sitting on the table in front of me, or even because of the free bottle of wine that was fast disappearing. But because, with this whirl of entertainment and food and excess and over-the-top that’s assaulting your eyes and penetrating your ears, it’s pretty hard not to be totally caught up.
Almost everywhere I looked there were beautiful young ladies with spectacular breasts wearing not much more than skimpy and ridiculously sexy vintage lingerie. They danced and bounced and sang and hung from the ceiling and even shimmied in flaming hoola-hoops. They sang rude lyrics and made naughty innuendoes and, to be honest, were far hotter than anything else you’ll find at Mavericks on a Tuesday night.
In between the perky boobs and sexy lingerie and increasingly unsubtle innuendoes, there were some ripped blokes as well, who tap-danced with such fury that they shook wine glasses, juggled an impossible number of skittles, and had the crowd gasping spontaneously at their outrageous and effortlessly executed stunts. Somewhere in the midst of this all that silent strong bloke reappeared and bent a solid metal rod between his teeth before tying it into an impossible knot.
By that stage everyone was licking their plates and gulping their wine, and just totally absorbed in this fantastical world swirling around them. The only brave bugger who wasn’t afraid to drop his Very Important Person or I’m From The Media guard was starting to get into it all, loudly offering assistance to the on-stage singer who was asking for sugar to be put in her bowl. Everyone else, though, was there to put up a front, and, as is the case with these stuck-up launches where you have to make small talk with half a dozen people you don’t know or care for at your table, there was none of the heckling and shouting and drunken mumbling and chatter that should really accompany a show like this. It’ll come though, I can guarantee you.
And then, just like that, almost with the click of the big French ring leader’s fingers, it was 10.45. We’d scoffed to popping point the mountain of cupcakes and Turkish Delight and brownies and fluffy marshmallows that were laid down before us, and as a green laser washed over the crowd from the legendary reopened Fez club lurking above, the night drew to a sudden end, leaving with it a slew of confused and enthralled patrons all trying desperately to shake themselves back into reality.
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