I don’t see my Mum all that often, so whenever there is even the slightest excuse to get together, I usually run at it face first, flailing my arms madly. This weekend’s excuse was a Lady GaGa tribute act at the Corner Pin in Long Eaton, Nottingham, just around the corner from where I live. Thus, I donned an outfit which made me feel slightly like a pirate, and walked out the front door into the decaying sunshine of the longest day of the year, ready for some GaGa and just a little bit of drunkenness.
The GaGa tribute was very good- I have a great deal of respect for the real GaGa, troll of the music industry, shaking her pert buns in a dress made from the skin or orphans. Last night’s GaGa made a couple of wig changes, which you all know was guaranteed to impress me immensely, and her tiny outfit and sequinned shoes (along with the hefty misuse of a disco stick) made for a very entertaining evening- even more so I imagine for the several old men who usually frequent the pub, who had not expected the notable GaGa tribute butt to be wobbled around in their faces.
Following the tribute we made our way over to another bar down the high street, the Bass House. The journey was interrupted by frequent bouts of intoxicated dizziness and mad laughter at the sudden desire to jiggle in the middle of the street, a desire well-known by all patrons of alcoholic beverage. A number of Bass House vodkas later, my mother somehow convinced me to dance to No Letting Go by Wayne Wonder which became, in all seriousness and with genuine surprise, the highlight of my evening.
I remember the very first time I saw my Mum dance. I can’t quite remember where we were, or why we were there, although I am quite sure we were on holiday. I remember symbols painted in luminous pink and yellow adorning the walls, of something that looked very much like a holiday resort ‘party pub’. My Mum wore black and looked stunning, as she always is, and stood in the middle of the dance floor wobbling her arms around, bobbing up and down. I still remember looking at her and thinking I had never seen anything quite like it but even as a young, insolent, shitty child I knew that dance, for anybody to dance, as funny as it might look, wasn’t something to be ridiculed because it was amazing… so personal and so free. I take a great deal of inspiration from my Mum; sometimes the clothes I wear, I could have stolen from her wardrobe (and probably did), but then on the dance floor last night, as I was transported back to the dark room with the luminous yellow symbols, I realised the greater impact she had on me with music and dancing.
Anyone who has seen me dance, or has had the misfortune of sharing the floor with me, knows to back as far away as possible, so that in flailing I don’t accidentally tear off any faces… and as the Bass House DJ chose to play a little bit of rock (as much as Long Eaton can understand rock), the force was unleashed. My mother and I danced together into the night and it was the most amazing experience I have had in a long time. There was the sudden understanding of knowing nothing else but freedom; everything else faded from my mind in a fit of alcohol, dancing and sweat. By the end of it I was very gross. But so was she. And that was all that mattered… we had danced and conquered together. I was happy because she felt free enough to share her dancing with me once more, and I hope she felt the same. It had been a brilliant evening, and I had GaGa to thank for the kick-start.
… just be a queen.
An example of what happens when I start dancing. Leicester, circa 2010
Mum, Jason and I at the Corner Pin