I have to go to the dentist today. I don't necessarily fear the dentist, despite having seen Marathon Man at least three times, but I do really dislike having to keep my mouth open for that long while people prod things into it. Yes, you can now make a noise like Kenneth Williams. However, it isn't ever a nice thing to do. Yes, I maintain a job that mostly requires me opening my gob and making stupid noises, but when the best laugh to can emit is from a man in a mask when you accidentally swallow some of that horrible pink mouthwash, you don't really feel like you've got the gratification you've been seeking. My least favourite bit is when they just get a pointed metal thing and poke it in your gums. T this day I've never really understood what that does other than allow a wannabe Guantanamo torturer the maximum enjoyment allowed from such antics before he's arrested. So now my whole day is geared towards this half an hour in a chair with bright lights shining in my eyes and someone poking at my teeth with all the care of a tunneler trying to break through a blockade.
I don't want to garble or perhaps gargle on about the state of my dental hygiene (which by the way I think is ok. I have, in the last few months tried to understand the benefits of flossing. As yet, there appear to be none. It serves merely to garrote your own flesh until it bleeds and then you have to brush your teeth again. Why anyone would recommend this is beyond me. Unless of course you work on my theory of dentists enjoying others' pain) so instead I will do a small time warp and tell of an eve that happened to me some time ago and I don't believe is in the world of blog due to it happening at least two months before I started this endless tirade of words. I was reminded of such a thing today when I did an interview with Amazing Radio who are an excellent Newcastle based digital radio station who promote new music, which is a great thing. Thanks to them I have discovered a band called Daughter who I'm now slightly hooked on. Hunt them down, put them in your ears now. Not literally. I don't think they'd like that. Anyway, the lovely presenter Georgie, unaware that I had been awake for only mere minutes and didn't have a thinking head on in any way, asked what the highlight of my career so far was. I am terrible with these sorts of questions as while there have been many brilliant moments, until I get to have a pet tiger, get the moon named after me and be able to command a robot army, I won't believe there has been a highlight. So I fumbled about supporting Jim Jeffries and a few other gigs, bits and pieces, until Georgie very brilliantly reminded me of the time I had to follow Robin Williams.
Yes. That Robin Williams. The Robin Williams. I had to follow him. Its amazing how easily I forget something like that, but it was so surreal that its fairly easy to convince myself it didn't happen. It was in Oct 2008 at the excellent Outside The Box Club in Kingston. I knew Robin was trying stuff around London to prepare for doing Prince Charles's 60th Birthday gig, but didn't realise he was going to be there that night. I arrived ready to go on first, only to be told that Zoe Lyons was on first and I'd be going on later. That was absolutely fine with me. Then Zoe went on, they had an interval, and during that interval Omid Dijali and Al Murray appeared to go on in the middle section. Again, slightly flustered by such things but I had met and worked with both of them before. Then however a big black car pulled up outside and quite discreetly Robin Williams walked in, followed by a much less discreet entourage of about 8 people dressed like the Men in Black. I would have to be following all of them.
Backstage Robin was amazing. Despite being star struck by people far less globally famous, Robin was so friendly and the whole situation was so odd that it was easy to have a chat with him. He told me a lovely tale of having to follow an act who was huge in New York at the time while he was an unknown and how he'd been terrified but it'd been great and he made me feel ok about the whole thing. Maff then went onstage to announce 'give it up for Robin Williams' which created a reasonable applause that erupted into mania when they realised it was 'the Robin Williams'. He went on and tore the place apart for 15 minutes. It was amazing to watch. He then walked off stage, said goodbye to everyone, and got back into his car followed by the MIB's. The interval passed and I stumbled onstage, mentioned something about having some pretty good warm up acts that night, and went on to have a truly amazing gig due to the energy that had been created. Truly mad and very special indeed. So yeah, I guess that was a highlight.
I'll be thinking of that as I'm asked to say 'aaaaaaa' for the 12th time and praying at no point I'm asked 'is it safe?' Bloody dentists.