Nappy Nights is a term in Britain that describes when a nightclub opens its doors to teenagers to give them a taste of ‘nightlife’. It’s for 14-17 year olds essentially and they are terrible.
I went to one once and never went again.
My friends had all been to a few but for some reason I don’t think I had ever had the courage to ask my parents if I could go. When I did eventually ask, they said they had no problem with it – I was sixteen.
The problem was that my friends had all gotten fed up of them by then. I excitedly asked who was going and I was met with a sea of unenthused faces.
“Come on, guys,” I pleaded. It was no good, they weren’t going. Part of the problem was that people were always talking about how they ‘got off with’ tons of people and my friends were not meeting anymore. How were we supposed to know it was all bullshit?
Desperate, I turned to a boy I liked at the time. We had met a couple of times and gotten along but didn’t really have that much in common. We’ll call him Glynn. Foolishly, we tried to date but he text my friend and asked her to come over and I told him I couldn’t see it working.
“Because you’re trying to cheat on me.”
We stayed friends anyway and he asked me if I as going to the next nappy night. I told him I was and asked him if I could go with him as my friends were all bailing which he said I could. Glynn had a lot of idiot friends so I didn’t want to go just with them. I asked the weirdest kid I knew, David (more about David soon), to come along with me. Glynn and David actually knew each other and didn’t really get along so God knows why I even bothered. Stupid really, Glynn’s friends weren’t going either so the three of us were a *ahem* awkward trio.
I’d gotten dressed up in a white denim mini skirt, silver MK1 high heels, and some horrible grey top. I stood in the line and looked as I realised I was overdressed when I saw girls in denim shorts and trainers. The two guys I was with, who weren’t talking to one another, hadn’t even said I looked nice when I had spent so long getting ready. We joined the line and stood awkwardly. David soon realised one of his friends, Desmond, was standing in front. The three of them started talking and I stood like a lemon to the point where Desmond actually thought I was a girl that had come on my own.
“Nah,” said David, “she’s with us.”
“Oh,” Desmond nodded from lack of introduction, “right. Hello.”
“Hey,” I smiled.
“So you boys looking to meet some birds then?” He continued like I wasn’t there.
“Er,” Glynn hovered for a moment before shyly replying, “yeah.”
“Sick, same here, innit.”
Was I glad he didn’t ask me what I was there for? ‘Yeah mate, I wanna meet boys’. Perhaps my poorly ringletted hair said it all.
I remember Glynn tripped down the stairs on the way down to the main room and I laughed too much in an attempt to be flirty. It hadn’t worked between us but I still really liked him and thought he was really cool. He was a quiet guy who was liked by a lot of people and had a really good sense of humour when he felt like it. We’d shaken off Desmond and now were huddled around one bar stool with our free water. Please Don’t Stop the Music by Rihanna boomed from above as all the confident people grinded on one another on the incredibly tiny dance floor. I stood and tried to yell to Glynn to make conversation but he didn’t really answer, just nodded, even when I didn’t ask a question. David was preoccupied looking for a friend of mine that he had become somewhat obsessed with. This would prove to be a huge burden. Even more so because Glynn also liked her. He looked around manically as he searched for her face in the crowd then demanded we all walked around with him.
“She might not be here yet, David,” I looked to Glynn for backup but he just shrugged. “And we’ll lose our seat anyway.”
“Fuck the seat,” he said irritated, “none of us are even sitting on it.”
“I am.” I planted my rear end awkwardly on the sticky chair and pulled my skirt back down my almost definitely unshaven legs in an uncomfortable display.
“Fuck sake,” David snapped as he stormed off.
I was alone with Glynn. What more romantic situation than trying to make yourself heard over Shakira’s Hips Don’t Lie? He stood with his hands planted in his pockets and continued to nod as my voice was lost in Shakira’s vocals. It took a couple of minutes for David to return.
“I don’t think she’s here yet.”
“Theres no signal down here.”
“Yeah,” I sipped my now lukewarm and sickly water, “it’s an underground club, innit.”
“Then we need to go outside.”
“David! We’ve just got here!”
He downed his water and threw the plastic cup away from him in disgust. I tucked my hair behind my ear and smiled at Glynn who looked bored. David thankfully left to go and get phone signal.
“Shall we dance?” I asked.
“Erm,” he looked at the crammed dance floor, “nah. I don’t like dancing.”
If there is such a thing as Lord of the Dance then I suppose I should thank them for my dancing would’ve been abysmal. I can even see what I would’ve done. I would’ve done that thing that breakdancers do before launching into their moves. That kind of stepping back and forth while loosely crossing their forearms and my body would have been painfully rigid. I sat hunchbacked on my stool and drank my disgusting water to the last drop, pleased when it had finished.
“Oh, I’ve run out if water. I’m just going to go and get some more.”
By the time the conversation between Glynn and I had once again gone cold, and my water lukewarm once again, a huffy David returned like a child who had not long kicked their ball over a fence.
“Her phone’s off.”
“Oh well,” I shrugged.
“Maybe she’s here?” Glynn piped up.
David agreed and started frantically looking through the crowds again. This time he was able to convince us that we should all go on the hunt for her. Leaving Glynn at the dance floor’s edge we pushed through a load of interlocked teens. It was sweaty, slippery and smelt of hot damp. I followed David through several times, each time he insisted I looked a bit harder. Upon the eighth time I threw my hands up and told him to forget it.
“I know she’s in here!” He insisted.
“OK? I’m sure she’ll find you,” I shrugged, feeling a little unconvinced.
“We need to go through again!”
“Glynn? He’s gone?”
“Dunno, toilets maybe. Come on!” He pulled my arm in an attempt to drag me through the literally tongue tied crowd once more.
“David!” I growled irritated, “stop! I need to find Glynn, at least we know he’s here.”
“He’s there,” he pointed at Glynn standing with some other lads he obviously knew. I gulped, not wanting to approach them as they were all handsome and friends of his that I knew to be quite unkind. I freed my arm from David’s grasp and sighed. This wasn’t fun. David grunted and disappeared through the crowd again. I circled the club like I had somewhere to go but I was wandering without a purpose. Drinking and collecting more water.
I sat down at an empty booth and clicked through my signalless phone. How did people meet people here? No one was even looking at me! I smiled at random people passing but pass is all they did. I hovered over my home number with the idea of going to call my dad, who had been so pleased that his loner daughter was going out meeting people. He had so confidently told me that I’d love it and here I was thinking of calling him just an hour later.
Glynn eventually came apart from his friends and I pounced on him immediately – “oh, fancy bumping into you again” type bump. We kissed awkwardly because aside from dancing there was nothing else to do. I guess I was relieved that I kissed someone but pretty disappointed it was someone whom I’d previously failed a relationship with. I stepped back and smiled with half my mouth as Glynn stood with his hands in his pockets. We were both probably wondering why we had done that and why we were even still here.
I did lose Glynn again after a trip to the toilet. I came back and he was regrouped with his friends who were throwing water at each other (May I remind you I was wearing a white skirt) . I rejoined David who confirmed to me that tonight had been shit without me saying a word. I nodded and told him we should leave, he asked me if I would help him look for my friend again and I politely told him fuck no. We left, hydrated and disappointed.
Glynn and I had an on-off friendlationship although were both awkward enough that it never really materialised into anything sexual. He would invite me over and spend the whole time playing fifa, or a load of his horrible pals would turn up. He wrote a comment on a photo of me to which one of his horrible friends wrote underneath “fuck off, she doesn’t even fucking look like that!”. This was a kid I had always made a point of being very polite to (his dad owned a supercar dealership so I don’t really know what I was expecting). I’ll write mine and Glynn’s weird relationship when I’m less tired.
As for David… Well, like I said, more about David another time but I can tell you he’s currently in prison. No, he didn’t end up with my friend.