Hugo is desperate to organise my stag party. I've never seen him so excited in all my life. He turned up at the Cooperdome one night off his face and demanded entry and a bed for the night. Victoria was down in the country, getting on with the endless preparations for the big day. She is flying in some ponce from Miami to do her hair – like there isn't a glut of home-grown ponces to chose from... He's come over for a "trial run". He must be laughing his overly highlighted head off.
Trinny is helping with the "details", but she's apparently really upset that everyone has noticed that her "new" TV show is a rip-off of something called Gok Wan. I don't even know what this means as I'm a movie guy and movie guys don't watch TV. (Actually, we all do, it's just really uncool to admit it.)
Hugo and I watch a DVD of Bear Grylls. Hugo went to school with him and says that his real name is Terence, which isn't quite as cool as Bear. I watch in total awe as Terence "comes across" a dead camel that he proceeds to eviscerate, drink water from one of the stomachs, squeeze juice into his mouth from the half-digested food in another stomach, and then, for his pièce de résistance, climbs INTO the camel, covers himself up, and does a muffled piece to camera from inside about what a great place it is to sleep. No question, Terence has raised the bar very high and Ray Mears is going to have to do better than wear the tightest pair of "budgie smugglers" ever seen on TV.
Hugo can't get enough of this stuff and he has this idea about setting up "survival" weekends in the Black Mountains for stag parties etc. No prizes for guessing who is going to be the guinea pig for this soon-to-be failed business venture. I tell him that I'm thinking more of a trip to the Reeperbahn in Hamburg, but it falls on deaf ears. Hugo tells me that he has a "mate" in the SAS in Hereford who is going to sort everything out. This sounds like total hell, but he's really keen and it's going to be difficult to put him off.
We hit the town and, after a quick meal at E&O, where I spot Mick Jagger and his stupidly tall chick, we hit the Electric for a big night. There are fewer and fewer of the old hardcore gang in there nowadays. More and more of them are getting hitched and then finding themselves suddenly banned from taking a "walk down to Electric Avenue". I guess that includes me? Hugo is sure that everything will change once the hammer comes down and I tie the knot.
Victoria is going off on a starvation week just before the big day. This involves paying a large amount of money for her to go to some pseudo-hippie refuge to do yoga and not eat anything for a week. She's so skinny already – I'd prefer a bit of meat on those bones, but my protestations fall on deaf ears. Mind you, I couldn't marry a fat chick, so I guess that I should count my blessings. She'll be in the shittiest mood, though.
Hugo and I sit back in the upstairs room and shoot the shit. We actually have a great Pablo night talking nonsense and telling each other about the grossest things we've ever done (Hugo won, with a quite unbelievable tale of something called "the biscuit game" at his school). He gets all excited and says that we should play it on the stag weekend. I make a mental note to really work on a plan of escape.
Ben will work something out – he's my best man, after all, and it's technically his job to organise everything. Ben will definitely give me the sort of stag party that I want. No pissing about in Welsh fields for him. No, sir. We'll be in a room full of hookers before you can say, "What credit crunch?". Good old Ben. He joins us around 11 – he's come straight from some tuxedo do at the Albert Hall. The usual terrible bunch of ageing rockers firing out their awful music for anyone who will listen. Rock'n'roll will never die... it just lingers on like a bad smell doing charity gigs. What a life.
Hugo orders a couple of bottles of champagne and we party like it's 2007. The barman looks almost pathetically grateful. We're the riders of the recession, impervious to financial ruin. Everyone else in the place is much quieter, like a funeral actually. They all seem to realise that the good times are over and that, like newly married men, they are going to have to reassess the whole of their sorry little lives.
There even seem to be fewer women about. Normally the place is heaving with posh young things looking to hitch their wagon to something wealthy. There must be an unmistakeable smell of death about the place, and the "ladies" have moved on to more fruitful hunting grounds. They've probably all moved to Moscow, where the champagne is still pouring like rivers...
Maybe we should go to Moscow for my stag? Ben looks very excited but Hugo looks gutted. Ben gives me a big wink and I know that he will sort it all out. I'm not sure that I want Hugo on the trip anyway – might get a bit awkward at times. Fortune favours the wicked... Cooper Out.