This week, I present you with a cautionary tale. They often say don’t meet your heroes, for they will only disappoint. They should also say don’t meet people you already carry a burning dislike for, and certainly don’t go on the hoon with them, for they will not only vindicate your hatred, but make you ask yourself why you haven’t yet hunted them for sport. On Thursday night, I went clubbing with Lembit Opik. Following watching the former MP make a consummate tit of himself in the Union debate, drinks were shared, during which time he asked me if I was Vinnie Jones (I’m a curly-haired beanpole), and two of my friends if they were ‘catfood’ and ‘Lawrence Llewellyn-Bowen’ respectively. As drinks concluded he was thrust into the centre of a whirlwind of hacks and hangers-on, and was summarily pressganged to Bridge, an attempt to storm off after being called a ‘shit Boris Johnson’ by Lawrence curtailed by promises of jagerbombs aplenty. The bouncers relaxed their ‘students-only’ policy for the Lib Dem lothario, who made a beeline for the VIP section, taking his crowd of enthralled spectators-cum-tormentors with him. Lembit cut a tragic figure, ordering in major rounds only to turn to a seccy to ask them to pay, attempting to flirt with freshers who either didn’t know who he was, or did know and so weren’t impressed by him. Bridge is a harrowing experience at the best of times, requiring one to break through the schweffe’s Argos that is Anuba, only to be surrounded by a motley crew of Oxford’s most odious BNOCs. But for that experience to come with the added tragedy of watching an unfurling mid-life crisis, with morbid curiosity creating some sort of sadistic enjoyment added a whole new dimension of despair that even Dante would struggle to articulate. But then I got my photo taken with Andy and Louise off of Made in Chelsea, so everything was all ok again.
(N.B. Chris Starkey is not The Functioning Alcoholic)