Woah. Smack. Cool.
Trouble is, it ain’t. Neither are Neon, Assembly, Moo, the rest, or even Kasbah. I mean it. It’s just dull.
Let’s take a step back and dissect a typical Warwick clubnight. Sometime around Tuesday afternoon, as the biting tedium of the week sets in, someone somewhere on a group chat posits the simple question: ‘Kasbah Friday?’
The ‘yeah why nots’ and the ‘nah, meeting my granny on Sats’ fly, flow and flounder in. Without question, some sleek, slimmed down body of friends and pretty-much-not-enemies acquiesce to give over a Friday evening, night and early Saturday to Kasbah’s altar of cultural appropriation. (How many of us had to Google precisely what it was that The Clash were strumming about in that song?)
I digress — the important bit is that, sometime around eight on that Friday evening, the bunch finds itself huddled on inadequate seating in someone’s kitchen or sitting room, cellar or airing cupboard, with an adequate quantity of cheap vodka and Carling.
A pint glass is set on a coffee table, circled by playing cards. The numbers between one and twenty-one are shrieked in confused excitement. If it’s a really terrible evening, merry folk clumsily claim not to have never done anal in the Copper Rooms.
It’s either déjà vu, or it’s just thoroughly familiar. All the same, there’s nothing wrong with familiar. As a matter of fact, that’s how marriage works.
Such warm ensconcement however, as you — dear reader — surely know, is an entertainment merely preliminary to the hip-thrusting, jaeger-bombing reality of the night.
Of course, the issues with obsessing over a clubnight in Coventry when you live half an hour away are both manifold and obvious: there’s a fucking bus journey.
Bus journeys are satan’s own work at the best of times, but become a deeply unpleasant beast when riddled with weeping lasses and chanting lads. The Uniexpress, whose capitalisation ought to upset everyone more, possesses both of those burdens in spades.
It also arrives to collect the almost-ossified Warwickians about an hour-and-a-half too early. It is almost inevitable that your target remains several fingers down the bottle — several cans down the case — at the point when the girl-who-loves-Smack-but-never-drinks-more-than-a-glass-and-a-half-and-never-takes-illegal-drugs declares that it’s five minutes until leaving time.
Frankly, bugger. I like this sofa and I’m enjoying my second bottle of wine. I’ve started to laugh too much, but I normally laugh at nothing but the misfortune of others, so that’s ok. I feel the need to urinate every ten minutes, but there’s a lavatory next door and I’m pissed enough to be quite content to re-emerge with unwashed hands. I want to stay.
I say as much, and am told to cheer the fuck up.
The bus driver appears to be on a bad crack trip. The attendant was clearly born for a career beating prisoners to death in one of the dodgier South East Asian jails. Together, they do their best to deny ticket holders their ten pounds’ worth and still get lost on the way.
Queue jump tickets, for some administrative reason beyond such mortals as us, generally lead to a longer queue than we’d otherwise be forced to stand in. Club bouncers are guaranteed to be lovely people, but act otherwise. Cloakrooms on such nights are quite exclusively for the dangerously ill or stupid.
The floor tends to be empty on arrival, which is nice. The only course of action is to plough on up to one of the bars, or — if there’s some semblance of a head between your shoulders — the smoking area.
If the journey to Kasbah is satan’s gift to Warwick-kind, Kasbah’s smoking area is god’s gift. Smokers aside, it possesses a bar, a ready source of burgers and more seating space than the rest of the club combined. It is heavenly, but a tad cold.
The main room, while scorchingly warm, is a cavern of pop music and dot matrix screens. Dot matrix screens, if you’re as well-lubricated and short-sighted as I am, are little more than a bewildering swizzle of moving lights. The main event, of course, is the heaving majority of gyrating, bottling Cov kids. They are neither pretty nor pleasant. Indeed, they are violent and overweight.
A photographer, in a thoughtful gesture from Kasbah management, meanders the room and attempts to take compromising snaps of patrons, which he can upload to public Facebook pages in order to guarantee our certain downfall.
Again, I’m forced to point out, it’s the sort of experience you need only undergo once. I have undergone it more than once, over substantially more than one academic year.
Boredom makes its bed and proceeds, with growing blatancy, to recline upon it. You stumble from room to room, finding neither friends nor stimulation. You want a coffee, and maybe an episode of Peep Show.
Naturally, you end up outside — with no prospect of re-entry — an hour-and-a-half before the bus is due to arrive. Inebriation will dull the wait, but a kebab would enliven it.
Kebabs, though blissful — it turns out — are expensive, lingering and difficult to order without feeling extremely drunk. There’s a choice of three kebab shops and they’re all equally over-lit and all equally filled with angry rugby players.
Kebab in hand, you have nowhere to sit, so stand awkwardly next to a homeless gentleman. Before too long, he has explained to you, with startling verbosity, why you really ought to give him all your cash, a pack of gum and that kebab.
The bus is still an hour away. You go for a walk and find yourself completely lost. In a moment of utter genius, you give a cab driver £3.80 to take you back to Kasbah, which is two minutes away.
The bus is fifty minutes away. You’re wondering where the nearest place to buy a beer is. It’s Kasbah, and you’ve abandoned her. You’ve dumped her. You didn’t want to commit. The folly of your situation grows conspicuous.
Stifling tears, you watch the bus emerge from a previously absent mist. Friends spill from kebab shops, from Kasbah and from nearby bushes. A sense of pie-eyed contentment returns to your polluted brain.