The award for best heckle of our Australian tour so far goes to the man who interrupted one of our gigs by shouting, “how’s the football season going for the North lads?” I didn’t want to challenge the heckler too much, after my run-in with the lady the day before who accused me of being sexist. Perhaps she would be in the audience again, ready to pounce, and maybe she’d brought her friends along to back her up this time. Possibly even a journalist to get evidence for an article on the sexist chauvinist, masquerading as a left-wing folk singer, presumably in a bid to preach his sexism to a different kind of crowd, in the hope of converting lefties to his bigoted ideology. I’d have to be careful, just in case I challenge the heckler and then get lambasted because he was a Jew, or gay, or dyslexic, or walked with a limp.
“you wouldn’t have said that to him if he was a heterosexual Christian who is steady on his feet and has no issues with numbers or literacy, would you? Shame on you. People like you make me sick. And you probably took extra pleasure in putting him down because of his nut allergy, didn’t you? You evil bigot!”
You can hear our interaction with the football heckling man on our Australian Young’uns Podcast in April, although annoyingly the recording level on the digital recorder has been doing odd things and so some of the recordings are a bit distorted; but hopefully they’ll be listenable. Otherwise I might have to hire in some actors to pretend to be an
audience, and recreate the event, in order to get a none-distorted recording. The upside to doing this is that I’d be able to cheat, and add extra jokes into my dialogue, meaning that I’d come across even funnier and unbelievably quick-witted. By the time I’ve finished honing the script, the original two minutes of improvisation around a heckle could end up lasting for half an hour. Now I think about it, this is a tremendous idea, and I’m regretting openly blogging about it now, as many of you might consequently be suspicious about whether what you’re hearing is actually a genuine clip from a gig, or a professionally acted and perfectly crafted bit of fiction. I would delete this section, but it’s getting late and I can’t afford to reduce the word count. Hopefully you won’t remember, although you probably will because everything that I write in these Dollops is amazingly memorable; I am cursed by my own brilliance.
The people putting together our tour have produced a booklet for us which tells us what we’re doing and when. There’s also information about local attractions, places to eat and drink, fuel stations and other points of interest. Then at the back of the book is a glossary of “handy Australian phrases.” I think the tour management company think we’re a lot more sex drugs and rock and roll than we actually are, given their choice of phrases to include in their “handy” list.
Amber fluid: beer. A Blow in the bag: a breathalyser test. A Booze bus : police vehicle used for catching drunk drivers. A technicolor yawn : to throw-up, especially as a result of the over-consumption of alcohol and narcotics. A liquid laugh is another word for the act of vomiting. To crack a fat means to get an erection. Franger: condom. To have a naughty means to have sex. White pointers is a term to describe a woman’s breasts.
If only our tour management company knew that for the first week we were in bed and to sleep by about 10, after having a fairly civilised evening meal with maybe a couple of drinks. There has been no vomiting, no naked women, no sex or drugs. Although, in fairness, there’s still another week of the tour to go, so those phrases might prove their worth yet.
Before the gig, we were looking through the list of phrases. I thought that we could maybe play a game of guess the Australian phrase with one of the festival acts for the Young’uns Podcast, so we highlighted the interesting phrases, which were the ones that I listed above. We then went on stage, leaving the booklet on our green room table. Chances are that the stage manager saw the list of phrases in the booklet when she was in the green room. If she then noted the kind of phrases we’d deemed important to highlight, then she might see this as further evidence of the kind of man I am: a womanising, boozy lout. But I have not lived up to that phrases list in the slightest. The only thing I’ve had to drink today is water, a fresh orange juice and a jasmine tea. Perhaps next year, word will get out about how un-rock-and-roll we are, and they’ll provide us with a more suitable phrase list to cater for a jasmine tea drinking none-sex having bore who spends his spare time blogging.
After the sexism-accusation gig we went into a pub for a couple of Amber fluids. It wasn’t until we sat down that we noticed the artwork on the wall, above my head. Many of the images were of women showing off their white pointers and behinds. If the woman who accused me of being sexist had walked into this pub now, she would see a sight that would only corroborate her opinion of me, as I sat beneath a giant collage of naked and scantily clad women. She’d probably assume that I’d chosen this pub specifically because of its sexual wall art. She’d sell the story to the papers, who would also include my “sexist” remarks to the stage manager, as well as a statement from the stage manager who mentions my womaniser’s phrase book, and that would be it for my Australian folk career. So we hastily downed our pints and hurriedly left the pub, hoping that we hadn’t been spied, at which point the beer and my catholic guilt both curdled together in my stomach and were emitted in a giant technicolor yawn, which sprayed into the face of a passing lady, who turned out to be one of Australia’s most notorious feminists. Then I heard the sound of a camera shutter closing and a newspaper journalist shout, “say cheese,” and the thought of cheese caused me to do the most enormous liquid laugh, which covered the famous feminist. Oh well, it was fun while it lasted. Farewell Australia.
I’ll let you into a little secret: not everything in the last paragraph was 100 % true.