Thursday, October 12, 2006

Drama Outside the Wibbley Wobbley

Last night was the gig at the Wibbley Wobbley Boat, in Surrey Quays, London. If you weren't there, you missed it. I stopped at Tom the Injured Cyclist's flat ( ), expecting that he would be going to the Wibbley with me, as it's a five minute walk from his place. After I buzzed, he met me at the door of his flat in a bathrobe. We chatted a bit and he sat down to eat his dinner. Based on his attire, I got the sneaking suspicion he wasn't planning on going. I shared my suspicion with him and he basically confirmed it, although he seemed uncomfortable about disappointing me. He said his leg was hurting him, as he'd been out earlier in the day. I discussed seeing him next time I came to London and headed off to the Wib Wob.
When I walked in, Pauly in the Morden ( spotted me right away. This was good, because I wasn't sure what he looks like, as he has had so many different pictures on his Myspace profile, I wasn't sure which was him. He had his mate, Dave, with him. Pauly, who goes by the name, Paul V. when performing comedy, bought me a beer. I was deeply appreciative. The Pooh Man was there, as well and I learned his name is Pete. I was sitting between Pauly, his mate Dave and Pete the Pooh Man. Isn't show business great? Pete is also from America; Idaho, he tells me. As I sipped my Stella Artois, I noticed the place looked half empty. Oh well, England was losing a football match, that evening, so maybe that was why.
More people arrived and Pete went on first. There were six acts on the card and Pauly, and I were held over till after the break. That suited me, but did it suit Pauly? A couple of more acts showed up late, including Julian! ( ) One drawback to going on later is that the drunks are drunker. Part way through the show, a drunken regular stumbled in and took a seat on the opposite side of the boat from me. He started heckling, but in all fairness, I don't think he was sober enough to be aware of what he was doing. Pauly performed before me and he waited till I had done my act, before leaving. What a gentleman! Then Pauly explained he had to go and left. As I was the next to the last act to perform, I watched the last comic, then went over to hang out with Julian and a guy named Toby, who had performed earlier. Toby had impressed me as being the person who laughed loudest at some of my jokes. We ended up sharing a table with an older gentleman, whom I had teased a little, during my act. He was wearing a blazer and looked like had had more money than the rest of us.
Eventually, the staff started asking us to leave, as it was past time. They wanted to close. The four of us slowly walked outside. I ended up offering a ride to Toby and Julian. As we stood outside, talking with the posh blazer man, we noticed the drunken heckler from earlier, laying on the ground, by some steps that go down from the dock level to street level. Julian went inside the Wib Wob and told somebody about this fellow. Subsequently, a guy came out and started trying to get the drunk to get up from the ground. He forced him to sit up and placed him on the wall beside the stairs. The helper then moved away, but drunk man was sitting rather precariously and in a few moments, he tumbled back off the wall and rolled down the stairs, backwards, on his head. I worried that he'd broken his neck, as he lay at the bottom of these brick stairs, unconscious and with his head at an uncomfortable angle. Toby went down to him, while posh blazer dude phoned for an ambulance, on his mobile.
While posh blazer dude was on the phone with the emergency personnel, the drunk man regained consciousness. Toby tried to get posh blazer man to cancel the ambulance request. Posh refused and Julian, and I, agreed that the drunken man should be checked out, as he might have injured himself seriously. Toby worried that any ambulance sent to help this man would be one less ambulance available for someone else, seriously hurt. I told Toby, "we can't worry about hypothetical people we don't know even exist. This man we know about and he could stumble, drukenly along and fall in the water at the docks. How would you feel if you learned, tomorrow, that he'd drowned?" Eventually, a small car from the ambulance service turns up. We leave, knowing the drunk is in safe hands.


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