I was playing I Never at a small party in 2004 when somebody said, “I never kissed more than two people in this room.” We all looked around and considered, and this boy said “Well, I know I’ve kissed you, Nine”, which was news to me. I used to buy the Big Issue from him a few years previously, and he’d helped me find some work when I was unemployed, but I had no recollection of ever kissing him. And then suddenly I managed to piece together a little bit more of a night out in 1999.
#63 and I had got shitfaced together and staggered down to the Outhouse for #113’s birthday thing. We sang dEUS songs on the way. The Ideal Crash had recently come out and it just blew my mind, I’d gone to see them and gotten wasted before I even reached the gig, lost my friends along the way and danced on my own at the front, zoning out like I was at the trance club from the night before. I was delighted that, since then, I’d inducted #63 into the world of dEUS.
“I bet you I’m going to get ID’d,” I said to #63 just before we reached the Outhouse, and I did. I said something snarky and the bouncer threw my ID on the ground and refused to let me in. I instantly forgot what I’d said to him and spent the next ten minutes trying various approaches to talk my way in. It was hopeless. “Nine, I’m just going to sit over here and have a cigarette, and you let me know when you’ve given up,” said #63. It was kind of funny because #113 was usually the one who got barred from places. He would be at the Mission later anyway, which had moved to Studio 24, so #63 and I set off to meet him there, except on the way we got hijacked by a hen party who took us to Café Kudos and I drunkenly tried to figure out if any of them were queer and whether I could get off with them.
Once we’d extricated ourselves from that confusing interlude, we continued to the Mission. That’s where #73 was. I scrounged a cigarette from him and then kissed him. The next day, I tried to remember who he was or what he looked like, and all I could remember was the word “spiky”. #63 managed to recall that #73 had been wearing a collar with six-inch spikes on it, or some such thing. It was lucky I hadn’t gotten maimed.
In 2005 we had a re-run. I’d been at Beltane and gotten wasted (again) and wound up at the Mission (again, although by 2005 this was pretty out of character), and after the Mission, after the sidewalk sale, I’d gone down to Leith for an after-party at #73’s flat. First there was #156, and then when that episode was over, I babbled nonsensically at some girl and finished all the vodka and maybe some other stuff too. Then it was about 8am and hardly anyone was left. Somebody I wasn’t too keen on was telling me I was beautiful and asking why I couldn’t see that, and I was thinking “no, you don’t need to compliment me, I’ve processed beyond that”, but I didn’t have much in the way of powers of speech by now and anyway it seemed like a good idea to rest my head on the floor. Before I left the flat, I made out with #73, who was rocking the mohawked transvestite look. I don’t remember how long it took me to get home.