Photo and poster design by Neil.
Over the years, we’ve hosted many parties and events. This was one of the best.
The chosen venue was McPhabbs, whose basement has a cozy, speak-easy vibe. Friend Fergus had suggested it since he runs a comedy night there, but it was also perversely appealing in that I’d once been to McPhabbs for a work function in the pre-escape days so it felt good to return on these terms instead.
Once the room filled up, I welcomed everyone with a quick speech about the magazine and its new direction. I then read a couple of chapters from Escape Everything! including the book version of Don’t Break the Chain and the story of my first job as a Dudley News paperboy.
Our eudaemonoloy editor Neil Scott took to the stage next with a specially prepared speech about his work on the mag including his insistence on the title “eudaemonology editor” and some of what he’s learned in the role about happiness and productivity. It was a great piece.
Tim Eyre then gave us a reading of his piece from Issue 10 about my charge that he’s an absurd individual, dressing as a dandy and writing for The Chap magazine while also listening exclusively to death metal. “I like the music,” he says, “but not the style.” Who can argue with that?
Both Neil and Tim included anecdotes about their involvement with New Escapologist and it all worked rather well.
Remaining photos by Nick E.
The big feature of the night was live music, first from our very own sub-editor Reggie Chamberlain-King and his friend Malachy Costello, both of whom came from Belfast to perform; and then from LD Beghtol whose set included “Prole Axed” and “The Apocalypse is my Boyfriend,” potentially familiar to you as the sheet music from Issues Seven and Thirteen.
LD came all the way from New Jersey to see us, for which I’m very grateful. In fact, the whole event grew up around the fact that he was so keen to come over and perform his New Escapologist numbers. A real pleasure to have you in Scotland Uncle LD.
Despite (or perhaps because of) so much greatness, one of my favourite moments of the night was when guitarist Barry dropped his instrument at the end of a song, punctuating the piece nicely with an unintended full-stop before endearingly ensuring the audience that “um, that wasn’t supposed to happen.” It was (I’d say) a highly necessary and welcome cock-up in an otherwise seamless evening. Very Wabi-sabi. Amusingly, a fine kilt-wearing chap called Mark caught the moment on video!
The Outliers Party really was one hell of a night. It was well attended by wonderful friends, old and new. The perfect celebration and send-off.