A few years ago (2014) I went to the Metal Hammer Golden Gods awards as a punter. As I wasn’t working it for once, I could write about it in anyway I felt like. I probably shouldn’t let myself lose on a keyboard as often as I do…
Any how, here’s what I wrote the day after –
Last night I was reminded of the Bill Hicks quote “By the way, if anyone here is in marketing or advertising…kill yourselves”. An extreme request granted, but it popped into my beer-addled brain last night. I had a better opener for this blog entry on the tube on the way home, but I had no pen (and I always have a pen…)
Last night was the Metal Hammer Golden God awards, an event that I have attended twice before, but only in a work capacity. Not able to have a beer, or a break, until the awards were over, I stood on the red carpet two years running, interviewing anyone and everyone who came along for Rockworld TV. A few memorable moments included walking in on Rob Flynn from Machine Head while he was eating takeaway noodles and thinking ‘I’m hungry, I wonder where he got those from’ before realising I was staring at actual Rob Flynn. Another was a media minder (I have no idea what their actual job title is, but they ushered the stars along the line of microphones and cameras) rushing up to me saying ‘Do you want to talk to Nick Oliveri when he comes off stage?’. I gave it a moments thought and said yes. However I had no idea who Nick Oliveri was. I had no idea why he would be coming off stage (I had a list of every winner and band and his name wasn’t there). I spoke to him vaguely for a few minutes, trying desperately to think of something to ask that didn’t make it obvious I had no idea who he was, and the footage of me wiping nervous sweat off my forehead ended up in one of his music videos. Random.
Last night I went to the award show as a regular punter. No press pass, no queue jumping, no laminated badge. I was nervous (as I could only get one ticket and subsequently went alone) but looking forward to just enjoying the night, rather than having to take notes and remain (relatively) sober. After joining no fewer than three queues before I found the right one, and waiting for 40 minutes to get in, I was at the bar. £4.50 for a can of frothy Hob Goblin might sound expensive but at the same venue, but a different arena, I’d paid £5.50, so I was sort of pleased. As my shoes began to pinch and I realised taking a clutch bag to a metal gig was a bad idea (difficult to get into when you already have one hand on your pint) the first band came on. I’d like to tell you about the bands, what they played or how they went down with the crowd, but after the first one (Polish death metal, not my cup of tea) I didn’t see any more.
Before the second act of the night, someone I used to work with on Rockworld TV spotted me and gave me an Access All Areas pass and showed me to the vip bar. Brilliant! There was no queue and a comfy chair. I was happy. That was until he brought over a friend of his and introduced her to me, saying ‘Tell Sarah (I’m going to call her Sarah as I have no idea what her name actually was, and Sarah is as good as any) about your time with Rockworld’ before leaving. Bearing in mind this was a TV show that hadn’t been on air for years, and when it was around it was no MTV, I would have rather spoken about anything else. (I am crap at networking. I hate it.) After glossing over my few years with RTV I asked her what she did. She said she was in the middle of organising an interview with a musician the following day. Steven Tyler. Of Aerosmith. In Paris. She made her excuses and left my company. I was secretly relieved, not knowing how I could possibly follow that. ‘Would you like to see a picture of my cat hugging an extension cord?’ perhaps.
I sat on my tod for a bit, went to the loo, went to the bar, lost my seat. Not wanting to sit in other peoples’ social circles and risk having to introduce myself (I am crap at networking. I really hate it) I stood at a table and checked my phone, as anyone with no one will do. Along came the friend who got me the ticket in the first place. We had a chat. He was nice and normal (figuratively speaking) and I got too excited talking about a pitch I wanted to make to my editor later that week and probably talked too much. He had to get back to work so took me over to meet an ex-Metal Hammer employee who was working the event for the evening. He had held quite a high position if memory serves (and it does, we had worked together on RTV years ago). He remembered me. I was flattered. I asked how the evening was going. I ran out of things to say. I ended up saying something like ‘I’m not sure what I’m doing here!’ then laughed. Then he had to go back to work. As did the senior member of TeamRock staff stood with him. They both went their separate ways and I stood there with my brand spanking new business cards burning a hole in my clutch bag. “Lenore – writer, model, part-time blonde, full-time weirdo” and person incapable of handing over their meagre web address and social networking details.
I am SO bad at networking. I actually, genuinely, hate it.
After wandering around a bit, drinking my last beer (no money left now), I saw a guy and a girl ‘making out’ on one of the sofas in the vip bar. He was trying desperately to put his hand down her top. She was trying to stop him. He tried to put his hand between her legs. I looked away, feeling a little sick. They left together not long after.
I decided I should follow suit (go home I mean, not let a guy grope me on the sofa). I sent a text to my ticket-friend saying I might head home. His exact response was ‘Fly like the wind!’, which cheered me up no end. Genuinely.
I sat on the tube home, in my posh frock, favourite red heels and vintage hair wondering what I’d just spent the last few hours doing. That’s when the unlikely Bill Hicks line about advertising and marketing appeared in my brain. I guess I’ll never work in either. I called my London sponsor (an old friend from Uni who lets me sleep on his couch for cigarettes, wine and a paltry contribution to his rent when I’m working in town).
‘Do you have any beer?’
‘I’ve found one can. Try grab some more if poss!’
‘Will do. Almost home!’
Shoes off, leopard print pjs on, cheap Polish lager open, Black Books on TV.
‘Did you have a good night?’
I think so….