Warning! This post contains one of the most ridiculous pictures I have ever been involved in. I have a fondness for wearing hats but I’m not entirely sure why. It may relate to my childhood and the adverts where the man from Del Monte would go to different countries and the way he liked to say "yes!". That and the state of euphoria that word would induce in the gathered masses that had travelled from miles around hoping for a positive review of their juice!  As a child it must have imprinted on my mind – you wear a hat, you say yes all the time, people love you – cushdy! My bonnet of choice tends to be a black trilby that is worn whilst to accessorise anything from waistcoats to hoodies on a night out to sat on my sofa watching E4.

A couple of months back during a detox/teetotal phase I was in the magnificent “The Northern” a bar in the Northern Quarter, Manchester, throwing shapes on the dance floor to a bit of Stevie Wonder with the trilby on at a jaunty angle. I had been out with people that I used to work with but they had either sodded off home or pulled so I was riding solo and sober. Whilst in mid flow I was tapped on my back and turned round to be confronted by a small lady, Jo, who was wearing a similar hat at an equally lively angle and was pointing and laughing at the top my head. I didn’t catch what she said to me, but after we exchanged a mutually appreciative “high five” we quickly went into what is best described as a trilbyfied dance off. 

During the dance off we exchanged a few pleasantries but she must have quickly latched onto the fact that I had been abandoned by my mates, “who are here with?” she asked. “No-one” I replied honestly, still head nodding and shoulder shrugging to the music “my friends are all shit!”. I returned the question back to her, “I’m here with my friend Damon and a couple others”, she said pointing at the bar. I looked over to where she was pointing to see a shortish, portlyish, bearded Mancunian dude wearing a tea cosy beanie; he had been watching me dancing with his mate. “Your friend is Badly Drawn Boy?” I asked. “Yeah that’s him!” she answered, not breaking her dancing stride. “Sweet!” I thought, still very much in boogie!

In the following hours I got talking with Jo and BDB both independently and together in-between the awesome music that was being pumped around the Northern. We mainly talked about our respective hats, his music and mine and Jo’s dancing, “I can’t believe you’re not drinking” he says referring to my liberal attitude to bopping. Shortly after I returned to the back of the dance floor, losing site of both Jo and BDB.

After deciding that I could no longer deal with being a “Billy No Mates” I decided to get some chicken and head home, and in doing so passed by the smoking area on the way to the exit. I saw both Jo and BDB in there. He was being accosted by a fan, she was still dancing close by. I sauntered over to Jo and said my goodbyes and thanking her for the dancing with a hug and kiss on both cheeks. I then turned and cut in on the fan to say bye to BDB with a handshake. “How come she get’s a hug and kisses and I get your hand?” he asked with his medium strength Manc accent. “Erm, you can have the same if you want, but to be fair Jo is far prettier!” I replied. With that I gave him a hug and a kiss on his big ol’ fuzzy cheeks. “In fact whilst you’re here, can I get a picture with you?” I asked, getting my camera phone out. We took the picture and we all parted ways as I went off to get some chicken, smug in the fact that the my hat had brought me a good chat with BDB, he was a really sound guy and that I have taken a picture with him.

The next day I met up with my mate Laura and her friends before going to watch Jamie T at the Manchester Academy. “What did you get up to last night?” she asked cheerily. I recalled the night, being abandoned and then meeting and chatting to Jo and Badly Drawn Boy. “In fact I took a picture with him” I said realising that I hadn’t seen the picture in the light and handing her my phone, “It should be the last picture in the gallery”. I looked at her face, expecting a mildly impressed expression, only to be met with a furrowed brow on her little face as she examined the photo, shortly followed by roaring laughter “mwah ha ha – oh my god, what are you actually doing?” she said, passing MY phone to the OTHER people in the room! Each of them collapsing in hysterics. I didn’t get it, had I taken an inappropriate picture of my self and inadvertently shown it to the room. “Who is that other guy!”, she asked “and why are holding his hand like that?” What other guy I thought and why would I hold anyones hand in any such fashion. And then I got my phone back and looked at the picture! O cock!    

That is terrible! It looks like the picture taken at the world’s first, night time, inter-racial, homosexual, civil partnership with Badly Drawn Boy leading the service. I assume the blond guy must have been the fan that I interrupted – so that’s one answer I guess. But why on Earth am I holding his hand like THAT!?!? That’s beyond weird! K*