Road rage: it's the rare time when you Brits actually get hot under the collar and lose your homosexual inhibitions. I think it's because you think you're all safe in your tiny little tin boxes and can start shouting and honking at everyone and think you're safe – not when the Cooperman is about.
I was leaving the BBC, having had an interesting meeting with someone at Five Live who wants to make me a "shock jock", but in a BBC way, which means I'd have to be equally "shocking" to every side of the argument. This is a basic recipe for dullsville, so I told the guy where to go and then spent two hours trying to find my way out of the Brazil-type building that is Tele-vision Centre.
On my wanderings I saw the tall idiot from The Office who was telling a group of sycophants about his Golden Globe as he supped on a cup of coffee and gazed at his reflection in the window. Then, excitement of excitements, I saw David Coverdale – the legend of rock and the band Whitesnake – in the reception area. I wandered up to him and started chatting. He seemed quite heavily sedated, but it was cool and my bud Chester in Venice Beach is going to go apeshit that I actually met the guy.
Excited, I hop into the Quattroporte and whack on some Whitesnake. "Love Ain't No Stranger" segued smoothly into "Slide It In" as I slip into the fast lane of the Westway. Life is good – David Coverdale is my friend and The Cooperman is a top UK media player. Suddenly, there's a gentle "crump" behind me – some asshole hasn't braked in time and he's pushed his shitty little Ford Mondeo into the back of my beloved Maserati. I get out of the car and walk back towards him. He doesn't get out of his car. I check my rear fender, and it's badly scratched and dented. This asswipe is going to pay big time.
I walk up to his window and knock on it. He looks straight ahead, ignoring me – he's on his cell. I knock again and he looks at me like I'm something unpleasant on his shoe. He winds down his window a couple of inches.
"What do you want? There's no damage. It was just a bump, fella..."
I assure him that it isn't "just a bump" and that my car had been spotless before he'd decided to learn how to drive into the back of it.
"Your word against mine, fella. I didn't do nothing and you can't prove it neither."
I start to see the red mist descend and attempt to calm down. I ask him nicely to get out and exchange details. He refuses and starts trying to move his car round mine. I lose it... totally. He manages to get past and drive off. I jump into the Quattroporte and chase the bastard. It doesn't take long as we're in rush-hour traffic. I edge ahead of him in a slightly faster moving lane of traffic and slide the car into a very slow handbrake turn, so I'm blocking two lanes of traffic and he is trapped. I jump out and run to his car and start smacking the window, demanding he gets out. I have totally lost it, I'm blaming this guy for the Himmlers, for the lesbian sticker lady, for the assholes who gave me such hassle at high school, for all my Mom wasn't, for the "visits" from her "gentlemen" friends in the teepee... I'm seriously out there.
The guy is totally terrified. He quickly realises that this is road-rage of a different league and he is totally lost. I'm surrounded by other commuters in their precious little metal shells of cars and they're all staring like it's some weird Saturday-night movie, but they can't do anything. It's just me, on my own, going mental and smashing a little silver car with my fists and my legs in the middle of rush-hour on the Westway overlooking a sun-setting London.
It's like Falling Down, that Michael Douglas movie, and I catch myself thinking beyond my current madness to whether I'm going to go the whole hog and shoot up Kebab King on Shepherd's Bush Green? In the end I'm too tired to hit his car any more and I walk back to mine and I get in and drive off down the emergency lane. I know I'm on CCTV but just hope that nobody does anything, like they normally never do in this shithole of a country.
I get back to the Cooperdome and hit a big bottle of JD. I'm in a weird mess and don't want to have to deal with it. I'm shaking like a chick and yet I feel a bit better. Like a well-timed angel, Ben rings, he always knows when to – it's like some warped twin thing. I tell him what happened and he laughs like a hyena and I feel better about shit. He drives round and beeps like a bastard outside until I look out of the window and see that he has a brand new convertible Jag. I run down, jump in Hazzard-stylee and we burn off towards Oxford where there's some cool party happening. It crosses my troubled mind to ask him whether this whole recession thing is going to bother him? Then I watch him hooting at roadside chavs and singing loudly to Duffy and I know that, in a funny way, we're untouchables, economic immortals flying through life at the speed of sound, and nothing's going to stop us, ever. It feels good. Cooper Out.Reuse content