There was a short period of time in between moving into our flat and starting classes where the seven of us (flatmates) had little obligation and a lot we wanted to do. A friend of a friend knew of a good place to go clubbing that was recommended to her by a friend, and the seven of us were invited. Not the bunch to turn down drinking (sorry mom) and dancing (not sorry) we made plans to go out to The Electric Ballroom in either Camden or Soho, I forget.
We invited the others over to our flat first and had a fine time pre gaming (sorry mom) and talking and getting to know new people, which is always very fun when you let yourself do it. We left the flat and all of us were already a little drunk (mom just don’t read this). We followed the people who knew where we were going and ended up at the club at around…I think 10. It was right outside of the tube stop and we recognized the venue from the stereophonic reverberations thumping out of the building close by. We were ID’d and patted down by security and let into the Electric Ballroom.
The place was decently large. There were two main sections of the club: a circular bar was off to the right, occupying a space with a few small tables around it and open room to walk around and socialize. Off to the left was the main dance floor, which was very large. It reminded me a gymnasium, actually, which probably would have turned me off more if I wasn’t drunk. Anyway we got there, had a few drinks at the bar and danced for a while on the gym dance floor. It wan an interesting enough space and was decently crowded. The lights were neat. I can’t talk about the club without commenting on the music, though. After that night I learned something that made the music choices make sense, but when we were there, the entire night the club played American music from the 90s like the macarena, Journey, Sheryl Crowe and other stuff like that. It was absolutely bizarre. None of us really paid any attention or minded in the moment, but looking back the next day we were asking ourselves sort of incredulously (and shamefully) if that’s what british people think American people listen to all the time. A few days later one of the girls read that that particular night was “’90’s American night,” which, of course, made all the sense in the world. I think if we’d known what the theme was ahead of time though, we might not have chosen the Ballroom.
Caleb and his friend Mike found two british girls and we all talked to each other for what seemed like a long time but probably wasn’t. In particular, there was one blonde girl I got to know a little. The classic elementary school sound of the ‘90s was going strong so in order to talk we had to talk right into each others ear. Regular Dan strained to listen but drunk Dan was too interested in the accent. Although drunk Dan had a good time, I remember the exchange well and remember her being very real. British accents are ubiquitous on the tube, the street, and everywhere you go, really. Although having one belted in your ear by a contemporary at 1 in the morning in a club was an experience I hadn’t had yet. The person inside I found to be real, curious and ordinary. It’s important to remember that beneath the differences in culture, voice and sometimes look, foreigners are people. I hope drunk Dan remembers that.
We left the club and meandered into the road. The lucky sober ones among us navigated home with the help of the night bus (the tubes stop running at midnight – a real drag.). We went home and slept. It was good to sleep.