The Civic Chronicle - Paid to be here.

Posted in by CIVIL CIVIC | Edit


The big, bacteria carrying claws that this past weekend sank into the tender flesh of my ego are starting to withdraw, and that can only mean one thing. It's BLOG TIME!

To get things off to an appropriately snide and bitter start, I'd like to heap some venom on our old pals sl-Easyjet.

"Not our problem, shithead. Ha ha ha ha!!!!"


I had a flight booked for 10:25 in the evening last Thursday, so being a paranoid traveller I caught the train out to BCN International nice and early. When I arrived at terminal C it was jammed tighter than a nuns' proverbial (or "cunt" in laymans terms). There was two poor, stressed assholes working the desk, trying to check in what appeared to be roughly a thousand hot, angry people.

Two spontanious fistfights had erupted in the crowd by the time I got to the front of my line (2 hours later) due I assume to snakey cut-in  style behavior from anti-social fucks trying to beat the system.

File image. The brawls I saw involved at least 6 people 
pinned by security in a space filled to capacity,
but you get the drift. 


But due to the effects of some marijuana ingested before entering the building I found myself in a philosophical mood, while watching my chances of getting a boarding pass in time evaporate like backpacker piss from my Calle Avinyo doorstep.

Christ, this is going to be retchingly epic, I'll have to sum the rest of the horse-shit up snappy-like.

1. Flight overbooked. Put on "waiting list" and issued a provisional boarding pass.
2. Flight delayed. Wait 3 hours in boarding lounge.
3. Told there is no seat for me. Go back through security and wait 1 hour for luggage to turn up.
4. Wait in line for 1 hour to re-book flight.
5. Catch taxi home at 3am and go to Las Cuevas to get horrificly drunk.
6. Return to airport following afternoon.
7. Flight delayed. Arrive at Aarons shithole in Dalston at 4am.
8. Say fuck alot. Fuck, fuck,fuck.
9. Sleep.

So much for that.

But if I thought that the Fuck Fuck Fuck part of my trip was over, I was quickly disabused of that fatuous notion.

"Shoreditch, innit. We love a good wank 'round 'ere".

Our first gig was at a club in Shoreditch (innit) called 333. We were performing in a small basement room that looked more or less like the loading dock of a Safeway. But shit, I am a seasoned veteran of shitty venues and wasn't phased in the slightest. What phased me was the fact that not only were we playing for no fee, but we also had NO FUCKING RIDER!!! SWEET BABY JESUS!!!

Emergency crews respond to the scene after 
Civil Civic learn there is no free beer.


The net result was that after soundcheck we went across the street to the "off license" and bought some cans of Holsten for a furious bout of street drinking before we played. We met some young local drunks and made conversation until about 20 minutes before we were due on stage, and that's when the real fun began.

This gig was an "aftershow" linked to the 1234 Festival that was held in a nearbye park that day. The festival website and literature was explicit about the fact that entry to the aftershow was free to festival goers, but some greed crazed fucknuckle had decided to throw on a 5 pound door charge at the last minute, so the line that had formed outside for the gig quickly dispersed in a cloud of mass disgust.

Then when we tried to enter the club to, like, y'know, FUCKING PLAY TO NOBODY we had to argue with a hideously obese, ugly, shockingly arrogant middle aged woman with a walkie talkie for half a fucking hour to AVOID PAYING THE DOOR CHARGE for this FREE GIG!!!!

Let's recap.
1. Agree to play for free
2. Blow 50 pounds in cab fare to get shit to and from venue.
3. Don't get a single fucking beer and be forced to drink on the street.
4. Play to 15 people because some shiteating greed-head decided to log some more bank
5. Spend 30 minutes arguing with a ball-shrivelling she-troll to avoid paying entry to OWN GIG.
6. Play in a Safeway loading dock (with no toilets).

Rock, rock, rock, in the loa-ding dock.

In my petty, confused little mind the crowning insult was the t-shirts worn by the 333 staff that said "Paid To Be Here" in big block letters on the back. I'm glad someone fucking was.

Was there anything positive in this experience? Yes my friends, there was.
Aaron befriended infamous Berlin tastemaster and ecentric label owner Steve Morell, who was deejaying in the loading dock between acts. He made some nice noises about booking us at HIS festival (which just HAS to be awesome).

There was also the 333 house engineer, a no-bullshit, calm-as-the-ocean Italian guy who was a complete breeze to deal with and knew his rig backwards.
Thankyou God.

Yes, these things are sent to try us, motherfucker! I'll hopefully be able to log back in after this coming weekends gigs with some nice, sunny, upbeat news and views. Pray for us, brethren.

4 Comments


  1. CIVIL CIVIC says:

    Ben, you're charm and optimism are boundless.
    -Aaron

    July 28, 2010 at 1:32 PM

  2. Ramy says:

    Well, on the brightside, 15 people got their heads caved in, and for that I am truly envious.
    And think how boring your blogs would be if everything went smoothly. This way, me and a bunch of other strangers get to revel in your misadventures. You're a literary martyr, or something.

    July 29, 2010 at 6:45 AM

  3. CIVIL CIVIC says:

    Fuck yes, Ramy. Thanks for that back-up.
    Aaron is trying to distance himself from my rantings (again), but in doing so he is fleeing THE TRUTH!
    ...and yeah, we gave those 15 paying customers a big box full of what-for!
    -Ben

    July 29, 2010 at 8:48 AM

  4. Alex Andersen says:

    maybe all of the employees actually pay to work there.

    August 7, 2010 at 10:06 PM

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