Friday, February 04, 2005

Buckfast: I Thought This Relationship Was Over.

There I was, me and an old bottle of Buckie, I peeked at the ingredients, not one of them recognisable to someone with out a chemistry degree. Contents: Alchohol 15% Vol, Vanillin : 0.009%, Potassium Phosphate 0.20%, Sodium Phosphate 0.05% and Sodium Glycerophosphate BPC 0.65%) Fuck knows what's in the water out in Devon or whatever it is those Benedictines get up to in the factory, but Buckfast is exactly what I've always said it was: liquid speed. Be it because I've a tendency to pogo on speaker stacks, rampage around the city with spray paint, spend hours swimming in the Dodder or rant at rooms of people for an hour at a time, I decided some time ago that my relationship with Buckie was over. Buckie didn't take it too well though, and there she was. After a conference on the environment, and back in a mates gaff in Galway scoffing free and cheap wine that was tiring me out more so than anything she stormed back into my life. One of the punks told me the night before that there was to be an insane party in the city the night we were down. Sitting around anxiously, lurking in a corner. Texting for party details, as some bloke lectured me about the Goya principle. I swallowed my own sense of guilt after terrifying some Finnish girl by sticking on Come To Daddy at full whack. There were several others driving me on in an effort to turn a wine reception with its inherent politeness into the much more optimistic party. But they were unwilling to accept the stares of bile that darted from all corners. Better than directions was Buckfast Boy himself. He came pogoing in through the door, using the walls like a pinball machine to bounce himself to the nearest couch before bursting into a speel about 'the party up the road.' Like a straggly mop haired poster boy for substance abuse, he ranted and converted the rest of the room to the over all project for the night's madness.

There we were, helping ourselves to the Buckfast, two veterans sitting on the stairs extolling the virtues/vices of the Abbey way to another that could be forgiven for never getting past the cough medicine like texture and taste. Conversation immediately speeds up. In Galway the Spanish Arch has the colloquial distinction of being known as Buckfast Arch “ bottles of it float in the sea - there's a Belfast punk band that used the label as an album design - mthere's traditional poems about it in Edinburgh - there's different effects from different bottles. Just two slugs, down the throat it slides and within minutes it feels like the building anticipation of a song, I'm thinking of that bit after I've Just got to find peace and unity' in 'Release the Pressure' by Leftfield - then suddenly - the bass and your bouncing. It's the caffeine, it's the only that really makes sense about it, that or the rotting levels of sugar in the thing. So out the road and onwards, we were led. Shouting after each other so as not to get lost. From the night air to an average sized bed room with assorted punk types going fucking ape shit to grinding, melodic hardcore drilled out by a Killcoole band Soldiers Take Half, emotive vocals, and riff after riff being piled on high and every one dancing in one sweaty primal mess. Of course intensity of thought was whacked out of orbit, the mental grove slightly switched over with even the faintest smell of Buckfast and I headed straight into the Buckie hangover. Which really is't a hangover, but more of an alarm clock in your head that goes off round 10am the next morning and has you awake bright and preppy but without a shred of dignity left to get up and do anything. Head buried in a duvet you just groan the paranoia away.

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