Master of None Blog

Chloe Roach and the Spiders from Hull

Last year when visiting my hometown of Hull (a place I hold very close to my heart) I decided to return to one of the clubs where I spent many Saturday nights of my youth tangled in black fishnets and badly applied eyeliner. Anyone who is from Hull or has spent a considerable amount of time there will have heard of…’Spiders’. If you’re thinking this could be a club inclined towards the gothic persuasion, you are of course correct. The queue used to be a great sight a decade ago, with teens dressed in capes, doctor’s coats, wearing thickly applied makeup and steampunk goggles to name but a few. Every Saturday was Halloween. Taxi drivers, and in some cases Mums and Dads, crawled up the curb at 2.30am to collect stray teenagers after a night of complete and utter intoxication.

It was the only place I knew where you can get smashed for a fiver and get a taxi home with the change. There was something sad about returning to the old haunt though. It was as if my rose tinted spectacles had come off, and although I might have been able to fool some of the clientele that I was ‘young’, I was having a hard time fooling myself. It felt a little like being in someone’s dirty living room with the curtains drawn in the middle of the day swigging cheap vodka and pretending that you’re at the Ritz.

To try and distract myself I thought a bit of dancing might get me in the mood; I might be able to forget my age and channel the past. Within five minutes of breaking out some damn fine moves, a lad leant over and pinched me. Having not experienced the bum pinch for several years I fell into a state of shock, moreover, the lad looked about 13 years old. Now, there have been times in my life when I confess I have been referred to as Mrs Robinson but I was determined this would not be one of those occasions. ‘What school do you go to?’ he asked, wincing at me with what he deemed “seductive eyes”. As I told him I had graduated from university years ago I watched his face wilt and he looked sheepish.

‘You’re like…really old,’ he said to me.

‘No, you’re just really young.’ This was my pathetic retaliation.

‘You could like…be my mum.’ The words every woman longs to hear.

Irrespective of the lad’s comments, Spiders does remain one of those places that is locked in time and returning to it, whilst tempting, is very much like trying to pick out your teenhood “best bits” and make them apply to your adult self. Those memories of 40p shots and buy-one-get-one-free offers on Bailey’s might sometimes seem appealing but more often than not a few too many Pan Galactic Gargle Blasters (the Spiders special cocktail that tasted like cough medicine and bleach) and you would find yourself under a table with a spotty teen staring down at you pondering how he was going to make his move. Teens of Hull, enjoy this ember of delight while it lasts, because sooner or later you will realise that you can’t go back, and how soon doth a flower wilt.