Friday, 6 January 2012

A Memory of Liverpool.

Just a big NB. That anecdote at the end. It's not really mine. I nicked it like that British fella nicked Homer's sugar. If you are the one who told me it TOM, well it's my story now and I'm more handsome and stuff anyway so people will prefer it when it comes from my mouth.

Anywhere here's some things I have to say about my beloved Liverpool.

Oh hell yeah. Liverpool.

Liverpool is a place. An actual real life-place. You can go there on the train and everything. There are a few of you, presumably scousers who've never know any different. There are outsiders who've never been and are probably wondering why I'm bothering to highlight the bleedin' obvious and that's fine because you will never understand without going, the sheer what-the-fuckery of that city. 

The experience starts with the taxi drivers. Like most scousers, Liverpool cabbies are easy to talk to and like most cabbies they'll spin a few yarns whilst doing so. Thing is that everywhere else, the stories tend to revolve around, "That foreign fella what runs the corner shop." Here, they're a little bit more Lewis Carroll. 
"That grave there mate, you know why it's a spike. Because Gamblin' Eddie sold his soul to the devil for luck at the cards and when he was about to die he had himself entombed alive standing up so Satan couldn't catch him." 
You're in a city that isn't quite. A city teetering close to the edge of the world of dreams. 

Here, you can take a civilised picnic to a David Lynch film strung out across the wall of a church torn apart by bombings, before quickly strolling to FACT and lying underneath a Laser Cone where you will, there is no other phrase, quite literally trip balls. From here you can go to a gig in an old gym and flex your muscles whilst listening to Liverpool's burgeoning hardcore scene before costuming up and taking the 'world of dreams' theme literally in an explosion of light, music and colour in The Kazimer. 

Sure, you can visit the Tate and feel free to do so, there are some fantastic exhibitions, but Liverpool's real strength is the boldness with which it sticks its big fat artistic middle finger at anything that makes any sense at all. 
Liverpool changed my life once. I heard from a friend of mine who, whilst relieving himself in the Asda toilets saw a young-ish red faced man wander in. He dropped his trousers and small-clothes before shuffling towards the urinals. Naturally he tripped and as he fell, thousands of empty shopping bags cascaded from his coat. Pants round his ankles and tears in his eyes he begged my friend not to tell security and that "His heist wasn't over yet."

To some this would be an indication of the tragedy that narcotics and perhaps even poverty and abuse can have on the mind. But for me I was just confused and ponding this, I began my walk home past a shop selling 'Sunbeds and English Lessons', a Hairdresser that moonlights as a carpentry place and thought to myself that if I understood a single jot of the nutty stuff that happens there on a daily basis I would be infinitely wiser. 
This place exists.
What artist could live there and not raise his game?

Here's something that actually happened in Liverpool.

I was going to end this with a thought about how our government is robbing a recently revitalised Merseyside of her dignity, but I will not. Instead I implore you all to do one thing. Visit and immerse yourself. You will not regret it. 

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