A Dublin Debacle


Three enormous bouncers breathed down on me but I knew I needed to keep my wits about myself for I was seconds off getting the beating of my life. I’ve heard to many horror stories about people ‘falling’ down stairs and ‘tripping’ on exit! The last five hours had been a whistle stop tour of Dublin’s finest bars and hostelries. I was scared, very scared…

The question was why did I smash the toilet cubicle and door off the wall? At first I’d just denied anything to do with it, keep quiet and get the hell outta there was my stance to the first bouncer. Unfortunately my partner in crime couldn’t help me so I had no option other than to fess-up!

I’d entered the toilet with a sense of urgency (the Guinness wanted to find it’s way back to the Liffie). As I relieved myself two blokes to my right started laughing and pointing to a bloke trying to crawl out from under the toilet cubicle door. They were shouting over to his mate to open the door so he could get up off the floor. At this point I took a careful balanced decision to leave them all to their own drunken devices and exit quickly back to my friends.

I’ve never really been the sensible one or one to take the easy option plus if I’d been that guy on the floor I’d of been wishing for a good samaritan to help me out (literally!)

The two other blokes left the toilet and I went to help the jammed man out of his unfortunate predicament. I started by shouting to his mate to pull him back under the door. The more he moved in an outward bid for freedom, the firmer he became stuck! With no response from his mate I entered the adjacent cubicle and climbed onto the toilet to peer over into jammed mans space. Unless his mate was the Invisible Man there was no one there. Had there been enough room I might of climbed over to try and open the door or pull him back in.

As I climbed off the toilet I heard the wonderful sound of my stuck subject being sick. I jumped out the toilet to be faced with his head lying in a pool of vomit. I couldn’t tell whether he was trying to be sick again or choking. All throughout this time I’d been talking to him, at first making light of the situation but now it was getting serious. If there was someone else about I would of asked them to seek help (slim chance at 01:00 in a very packed pub!).

Immediate action was called for as my new friend was getting very distressed and gurgling uncannily. He was jammed firm, no way forwards and no way back. I decided the the only option was to take the door off. Two small hinges and one flimsy lock, how hard could it be break them in order to save someone’s life?

I quickly figured that a swift kick to the lock would see to that one then we’d take it from there. What I was about to do was totally reasonable, anyone could see that right? What I didn’t expect was on the third unsuccessful kick to break the lock was the screws in the wall to start coming out! To late to worry about that now, my friend had stopped the gurgling noises and lay motionless on the floor. I could see the fixings to the wall giving in so I gave it two more determined kicks and the whole lot buckled raising the bottom of the doors up. I grabbed Mr Lucky under the armpits and slid him out of the toilet, through his sick and to freedom. His eyes opened in a bewildered stare as he had no idea as to what had just happened to him (or what I’d just done).

Now with a sense of commitment to get this guy cleaned up and back to his mates I helped him to his feet and to the sink. I was semi aware that someone might of come into the gents while I was doing my Kung Foo kicking but they must of quickly retreated once they saw my determination to destruct the cubicles.

The warm glow of success suddenly turned to ice fear as two massive blokes (black trousers, white shirts, dickey bow ties, 20 odd stone, definitely bouncers) stormed into the toilets. One look at the now collapsed cubicle system and they clearly weren’t impressed with my rescue technique. They’d no evidence that I’d caused the damage so I quickly denied everything thinking it would be easier to say it was like that when came in. A third bouncer came into the toilet with confirmation that someone fitting my description had caused the damage (rescue!).

Up until this point I thought everything was under control and I could talk myself out of the situation, tell the truth and all would be fine, NO. I recounted my tale of heroism to the three bouncers but I could see they weren’t impressed and to make it worse, Mr I’ve Just Had My Life Saved had no idea of what had just happened and just kept shrugging his shoulders in a stupid drunk fashion.

The interrogation continued, whilst questions were fired at me one bouncer kept the entrance door firmly closed so no one could enter. What’s your name, where’re you from, do you like vandalism, have you got ID, have you got a credit card, why did you do it, the questions were too fast to answer each one fully and any slip up would be picked up and turned against me. The atmosphere had changed and I feared for my safety,  the door stopper guy was now talking on his walkie talkie and I could hear a special exit been arranged for me. I remembered talking to a customer in the climbing wall at Liverpool about his absence, he told me that a bouncer had picked him out of a lively night club queue and beaten him to an inch of death, he spent two months recovering in hospital, the sparkle in his eyes that was once there had now disappeared!

I was beyond myself, a thousand negative thoughts were going though my head as I was 100% certain the outcome was going to be very bad. Suddenly the door stopper bouncer let someone else in. Great, the odds were greatly now on that I was going home in an ambulance. Rather that another 20 stone of flesh, a young guy with an air of authority entered. He quickly introduced himself as the venue manager and asked for an explanation. My three bouncer acquaintances were quick to point out a  drunk Englishman and pointless destruction but the young guy wasn’t interested in any of this and quickly asked the bouncers to be quiet and heard what I had to say. For what seemed to be the 10th time I carefully explained what had led up to this moment in time. I knew that if I had one chance to get out of this unscathed, this was it. I’m not sure whether he believed me or saw the blind panic in my face but in the flick of his hand I was set free from the bathroom and my imminent pain. I didn’t need to be told twice and I was out of there in a flash.

My friends were where I left them, they were a bit puzzled as to where I’d been but not enough to come looking for me. Even if they had they wouldn’t of got passed the massive door stopper!


(This is purely a story of friction!)

Facebook Masters Guild 2013

Facebook Masters Guild 2013

I’d never heard of the FMG (Facebook Masters Guild) until the email arrived, but come to think about it I’d never really had anything to do with Facebook until my daughter decided to go to Australia solo last year! I figured the only way to know she was safe and enjoying it was to follow her antics on Facebook, with her permission of course (a dangerous thing for a father to do!)

I learnt a trick or two over in Dublin watching the media savvy Dave Ayton (Mr Awesome Dublin) spinning his web of enthusiasm over Ireland. Before AWCC Dublin was finished I’d found a building in Sheffield and set up the AWCC Sheffield Facebook page. Without the chaperone of Mr Ayton monitoring my every click I tentatively started to post. Getting ‘Likes’ on your Facebook page is like getting the thumbs up off people that they ‘Like’ your page.

Winning people over and gaining their trust is a hard thing to do and there’s a fine line from being enthusiastic to being a cock-sure outsider! The line was mine to walk…

Now I’m sat here after 12 months of Facebook marketing with a line of interviews lined up for me to attend should I choose to accept. As I’m not really that socially involved with the outside world many of the names were alien to me, one or two I admittedly knew- Parkinson, Paxman but who the hell was Zuckerberg?

Now my strategy was simple just go from the heart to the heart. Post honest interesting material with a slight dusting of humour and see what happens. It’s now been explained to me that it’s not all about the ‘Likes’ that you have (apparently you can buy ‘Likes’ on Facebook for very little money) on Facebook it’s about the interaction that your fans have with your site! I look at the figures and statistics as well as the next keen person but as busy as I am there’s two things that I notice- Green is good and Red is not as good (always keeping a positive here). When I see green more often than red I’m happy and keep posting onwards.

I hear footsteps coming down the hall and towards the office but I’m too slow, caught in the act, I feel like I’ve been looking at something seedy. The words come out- ‘Are you on that bloody Facebook AGAIN?’ I’m shaken out of my day dream with no where to hide. Guilty as found with no worthy retort.

It was a self flattering day dream though…facebook-2