Wednesday, 12 August 2015

Not Greenbelt 2015

I'm aware there are lots of people who go to Greenbelt, and it's very good. At least, I presume it is. I've not been since about 1990. Last time I went to Greenbelt,  I was in the tent at the seminal moment when Martin Joseph was listening to Revd John Smith, Bono crept in under the side of the tent and disturbed Martin so he didn't hear what John Smith was saying, and as a result he wrote the song "Bono makes me cry". Shortly after, he crossed out "Bono" and wrote "Dolphins*" and the rest is history.
This year, Not Greenbelt will not be at Castle Ashby, not by permission of the Duke of Northampton.

I digress. There are many people who will not be going to Greenbelt 2015. Some will be wanting to vote for Jeremy Corbyn. Some are allergic to Kettering. And some can't afford to stock up in Rushden Waitrose on the way.

Well for you people - indeed, we people - help is at hand. For the third glorious year, Graham Hartland is organising NotGB2015. OK, strictly speaking it was NotGB2014 last year. And NotGB2013 the year before. But go and have a look.  You can have a pint of absolutely anything you like in the Hens Wings pub, without leaving the comfort of your own breakfast bar. They'll let you in whether you're uninterested in art, not a Christian or even a Tory.** And it's for a good cause.

Personally, I'm pleased to be running this years "Drainstage" on "The Cringe". We let people with artistic pretensions up to perform. And the minute they say something that makes a panel of three observers all cringe, we pull a big lever and drop them into the drain. Examples of things that make us cringe include people who recommend laying-on of hands for minor sniffles, over-the-top claims that music can cure world hunger and bring in world peace, and anybody who can only play three chords.

Nobody's made it off Drainstage in two years.

* If dolphins make you cry, try peeling them underwater.

** John Selwyn Gummer was the last Tory voter to attend Greenbelt. Shortly after feeding his daughter a beefburger. Not a Greenbelt burger. That'd be an organic, vegetarian, free-range burger I reckon.

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