Monday, March 03, 2003

Big Bad Bo Billy

I've done Glastonbury just once, y'see you don't 'go' to Glastonbury, you 'do' it. The year I did it was the year AWOL Take That dancer Fat Bob Williams appeared on stage doing the Running Man to Oasis' Cigarettes and Alcohol. Legendary in a Heat and Smash Hits kind of way.

Me, Chogggaz, Wiggaz, Melissa, and Glidder went. We saw thousands of bands; Tricky, Oasis, Orbital, Massive Attack, Charlatans, Elastica, Pulp and a Japanese band who had two bassists and started every song counting in with "On OOh Fee Four" before embarking on an ear-splitting sonic assault indistinguishable from any other song in their set.

One morning we made our way to the NME stage to see Shed 7 or someone, it was busy but we spotted a gap that was perfectly central to the stage. We made for it, edging our way through, the crowds cleared in our midst. Looking down we saw the reason for the apparent space. Crouching on the floor was a completely naked man having a poo in front of everyone. People didn't know whether to look and laugh, or hide and be sick. Thankfully he was just finishing when we got there, at which point he got up turned and looked me in the face said "Animals That Swim rock man" and disappeared off...

In narcotic parlance I believe he was buzzing off his tits.

I also experienced the joy of the rave at that Glastonbury, one night me and Wiggaz went for a tea, it was about 1am. We chatted and then made our way back to our camp. We turned right down the main thoroughfare into the novelty hats and veggie burgers village. The stalls had turned into sound systems and for as far as you could see there were thousands upon thousands of people dancing in the hazy light. There was something quite tribal about it. We went and had a little dance. It was ace.

Our camp was next to a group of girls who had their tent ransacked on the second day. They left a note on their tent, just in case the thieving rapscallions came back, asking for their stuff back because they were off to Cornwall and wouldn't be able to go if they didn't have their stuff. Oddly, they didn't get it back.

Our neighbourhood hadn't looked good when we first arrived, we didn't have much choice of where we went, and as we set up we heard a shout.

"I have no remorse, I'm the motherfucking murderer"

Sitting opposite was a northern beer boy, or more precisely, a northern brandy boy, he was swigging from a huge optic. He'd clearly drunk about half of it. He commentated throughout the entire construction of our tent.

"Look it was a some cloth and poles, now it's a home"

Sometimes it was funny, mostly it was threatening. It was a little unnerving for people who were quite overawed with the 100,000 plus festival site. As he bated us he told us that him and his mates had come from Bolton three weeks previously, parked up their van, and the perimeter fence had effectively been built around them. That's what he said, and who are we to argue?

"Big Bad Bo Billy, in the mother fucking house"

We hadn't spotted the half constructed two man tent with the pair of legs sticking out the end. Inside was Big Bad Bo Billy, it was difficult to tell how Big and Bad Bo Billy was, but his workman's boots suggested, fairly.

"I have no remorse I'm the motherfucking murderer" said the bloke swigging more brandy, he asked us where we were from, we said Oxford, he laughed. "Billy, they're from Orrrrkkkssfooorrrdd"

I thought we were in for trouble, and Big Bad Bo Billy hadn't even taken the stage.

It was, thankfully the hottest Glastonbury in an age, and that, plus the Brandy turned our friend a little groggy. Slowly he fell asleep on a half made camp bed. We had from rest bite. Then Big Bad Bo Billy began to stir. I expected him to emerge with a pickaxe or something. Slowly he unfolded himself from his tent, he was 48 feet tall. He stood up, stretched, adjusted his sunhat, said "'allo lads, sorry about 'im" he said nodding to his comatose friend. He then walked over. picked up a towel and gently placed it over his mate's head and arms to stop him burning.

Then he carefully undid his mate's trousers, pulled his willy out and walked off 'for a burger'. It was midday, it was 32 degrees, there wasn't a cloud in a sky and he didn't wake for another four and a half hours, by which point his willy had become a fried radish.

We had no problems with him for the rest of the weekend.

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