“I think Rob and Mel are looking for some extra staff behind the bar. You should pop down.”
Fair play, Lloyd didn’t have to mention that to me. I mean, who wants to do six hours next to the brother you’ve seen everyday for 16 years? I couldn’t wait to work with my brother though. Considering the fact that he said about six words to me when I was in year 9 and 10, this would be a vast improvement. (I’m not sure why he didn’t say much to me those previous years. He was probably busy shaping his side burns.)
((Remember when sideburns were cool?))
(((No, me neither.)))
I was kept downstairs for my first few shifts, agonisingly close to the music, but always a staircase away. And finally I was summoned upstairs to collect glasses from the masses. It was like walking through the pages of Kerrang.
‘Look at those silly fuckers singing along to Rammstein.’
Du hast mich!”
Look at them. They sound half-German, like an Arnold Schwarzenegger wet dream. Well it’s better than Alien Ant Farm I guess. Man I’d love to fight that guy.
Lloyd had pretty much moved on from RM’s when I finally got the best spot in the house (not including the decks of course). And it hadn’t really occurred to me that we hadn’t worked alongside each other until the shift arrived.
‘The Willmotts working together, play nice!’
Mel set a great tone for the night. Even if she was just passing through the room, she’d say something positive. Or she’d just smile. Both had the same result.
That night had a different feel for me though. It wasn’t about daydreaming about dating half the dance floor or badly translating German rock bands. It was about delivering to a standard that would pass as satisfactory to Lloydy boy. Not an easy guy to impress.
We were fucking rapid behind that bar, and we had to be; the RMs crowd could empty the trunk of an elephant, and that was just the girls. I once saw Claire Thomas drink herself sober. It was like her brain had an intervention with her liver, very impressive.
The shift felt like it lasted just an hour. We finished up and watched the stragglers out. Smilesy looks like his legs are refusing to listen to the signals his brain is giving them. Scott Evans. He’s laughing because he has no fucking clue what’s going on. He cracks me up. Gav and Jolly commentating between them. The things they see from their vantage point.
I think that’s Ritchie and Shabs. They look like they’ve been through an apocalyptic battle. They’ve had a good night.
It’s strange to say that the greatest shift of my career was uneventful, but RMs was always about the company we kept. To work side by side with my older brother in a packed night will never be beaten. I would have worked that shift for free. In fact I would have paid to be there.
Interviewing cabinet members and sports stars, signing my own books for fans, delivering global communications campaigns, none of it has come even close to that shift.
“Nice one, Lloyd”.
A drink, a toke and a trip home in the Escort. Cheers Lloyd. I hope I remember this night.
There was something about those hours that sat well with me. I was more convinced than ever that RMs and the rock revelers inside just got me. They saw me for my quirks and anxieties and judged me not. RMs, you got me. Or to say it in German – du hast mich.