As an aside from the relentless dirge of misery that this blog has become.. I went to see David Sedaris last night at the De La Warr Pavilion. It was sublime. I’ve read or listened to most of his work but everything tonight was fresh and original. He was sly, bright, funny and very impish - mostly when he was deliberately making us squirm in our seats. It was pretty clear from the expression on his face (I was sitting about 6 feet away) that he LOVED making us squirm. And how could he fail, his story about having a benign tumour removed Ad-Hoc by a strange woman in Mexico and then sent on ice to his house so he could feed it to a snapping turtle, or the one about how he persuaded a sick teenager to give him one of his damaged kidneys in exchange for an iPad really made me laugh - but the whole house erupted at the line ‘Your grandmother’s ass is so big it can take my whole fist”.
I arrived early - thanks to the trains, and was witness to Sedaris during his book signing - about 40 people were in the queue, there was security, they needed it. Obsessive fans are sinister. One middle aged woman was in full 1950’s costume - she looked like a cross between Morticia Adams and Doris day - managed to get to the front of the queue and spent 15 mins badgering him, gave him presents, a cake and kept pulling things from a plastic bag for him. I have a feeling that his fixed grin actually said “I’m going write a whole frigging book about you”. Another woman was quite composed until the moment she left the table with her signed book and collapsed into a heap of hysterical fan worshiping madness. During the Q&A one woman stopped half way through a faltering and ;pointless question and said “Oh My God, I can’t believe I’m actually talking to David Sedaris” - I’m sure he goes home and says “Christ - these people are idiots”
I was sitting on the front row, I was the only person under 80, and the tallest by a mile - I inevitably caught his eye repeatedly though the event - people on stage need something to focus on and unfortunately it was me. This was not missed by the rest of my row - they kept glaring at me.
I came home via Bexhill station. On the platform a young man was taking photographs of the display board. I didn’t pay much attention - but he came up to me and explained that he wasn’t doing anything strange - he just thought that the message was funny (it was - something about ‘a body on the train, disruption and power issues). He was about 23 or 24. He was striking in that apart from being very good looking and a bit drunk - he looked like something from the mid 80’s. Asymmetric shirt - small moustache and wedge hair. It looked like he’d fallen off the back of an old 1980’s TOTP - part Russell Mayle, part Gary Numan. He continued chatting away with random facts for about 15 mins, offered me a bottle of beer from his bag (I declined) and revealed himself to be intelligent, educated and very flirty - he was also really pissed. On the train I bumped straight into someone I knew and wished him well and sent him on his way. Half way home, at the top of the West Hill - I bumped into him again - he’d left the train at a later stop and gone to see a girl who wasn’t in. He was off to get drunk and invited me along - being even more flirty than before. I declined again. I’ve not had that happen in at least 15 years. He must have been very pissed. Last time it happened a young bloke in the street begged me to take him home for sex - this was Brighton, I think it was quite obvious he had nowhere to stay. I declined (as usual) - it’s another reason I don’t live there any more.
Actually - the friend I saw on the train with also has a small business, we had 10 mins of swapped gloom and I had to stop - I tried not to think about things like that today - I’ll leave it for tomorrow.
In other news - we had a clap of thunder this afternoon that came from nowhere - it was so loud and so violent I literally jumped into the air.