Glastonbury 2017: Middle-aged mutterings from the safety of the sofa

Having trodden the muddy fields of Glasto a few times pre-kids, I’m always hit with pangs of longing, a hefty dose of FOMO and a small seeping of simmering resentment reserved for those who chirpily announce they’re off to revel in the hallowed Somerset fields near where I grew up.

Do these emotions prompt me to secure a ticket for the following year? Er….no reader, they don’t. As with previous years and no doubt future years to come,  you’ll find me happily curled up on my sofa absorbing the Glastonbury vibes via the marvellous invention called the TV and more specifically, iPlayer.

So what happens when I’m left alone to watch proceedings while the rest of my disinterested family retire to bed or remove themselves to another room in the house?

This kind of thing happens…..a middle-aged internal monologue of mindless and shallow mutterings…

MY DRUGS OF CHOICE : The remaining dregs of an Ibuprofen coursing wildly through my veins following a pre-menstrual headache. Some Green & Blacks chocolate officially purchased to make posh chocolate cake but what the hell. Off with that golden wrapper. The posh sponge and its squidgy icing can wait.

ALCOHOL INTAKE : A bottle of Sol that’s been taking up a small space in the fridge for months followed by a can of Strong Bow located in a cupboard hiding behind a bottle of Limoncello rashly purchased circa 2013.

Glastonbury here I come. PRESS PLAY…..


KATY PERRY… “Jesus. What’s she wearing? That looks flippin’ awful – a flesh-coloured body suit dripping in little crystals and trainers! No one can pull off this….Who could pull this off? Who would actually look vaguely ok wearing this? (Wracks brain)…Erin O Connor? The one with the pouty lips married to Jason whatsisname, models for M & S, bra woman… Rosie Huntington Something?

“Still…Erin, Rosie…come on…they’re both models….leaping about the stage… God, that lycra really is unforgiving even if you’ve been hitting the gym and been doing non-stop kettle bells for the past month.

“What is KP thinking? What was the thought process behind this outfit? Who’s your stylist Katy? Do you have a stylist? Of course you have a stylist. Is your stylist currently cackling into their cupped hand in the wings of the stage?

“Is Russell Brand watching this? Naa, doubt it. Probably too busy changing nappies while performing a downward dog or something. Namaste Russell. Namaste.  And the make-up? Katy, the make-up?  80s purple eyeshadow. It’s kind of Sheena Easton meets Siobhan from Bananarama circa 1983…Still…good on you. Bold and brave. Bold and brave.

perry tv

“Oh I like this one…’Turn it up, it’s your favourite song, Dance, Dance, Dance’…(hums along a bit) I know this one…must be on Now That’s What I Call Music 198 or whatever it is my children have forced me to listen to in the car a million times. ……. Ooh look people strutting about on stage with TVs on their heads. Thank god the heatwave has come and gone otherwise they’d be melting into their shiny metallic bodysuits. Bet they’re still dripping under there. Battling sweaty pits no doubt.

“How can they see out of those things?  – I can’t see how they can see out…where are the eye holes?  Is one of them going to bash into one of the others.?  I’m worried. Come on now, they may have rehearsed this numerous times but surely there’s a serious risk of a dangerous domino toppling scenario here…Fast forward, fast forward….no…. no stage disasters.  What Katy Perry songs do I actually like. The ”Roar one” that’s ok …the “Dark Horse one”  that’s quite good Fast- forward, fast- forward…..”

radiohead _edited-1

RADIOHEAD  ….” Oooh Thom Yorke seems to have grown his hair long. Going for the ‘Andy Carroll bun’ look. (For the uninitiated a West Ham player, my favourite…runs like a giraffe, scores lots of goals…usually with his head).

“Who are those other guys with him? Are they the original band members? Not very rock n roll are they? That one on the left looks like a bored dad at school pick-up waiting for his kids to emerge. Come on mate. Liven up. You’re infront of 10,000 people waving flags, and banners and cheering.

“He’s got a wedding ring on. Married. Happily? Unhappily? Twang, twang. Is he actually pleased to be there or is he worrying he’s left the door to his fancy winnebago unlocked or forgotten to cancel the Waitrose delivery.

“Oh hang on this one’s more rock n roll. Nice floppy black hair, good fringe movement. We like good fringe-movement. Intense slamming of the guitar. Tick. Good. At least he’s making an effort.

“Right..this is ok, all very atmospheric, nice lighting. Good work lighting people.  But where are the hits?….Creep, Karma Police….fast- forward, fast-forward ….ah there we go…. finally……(Listens intently  and feels quite emotional. The Strong Bow clearly kicking in at this point. Remembers seeing Radiohead perform there in 1997. Memories of standing gazing at Pyramid Stage in sway-like fashion, sketchy but good)….

liam moody

LIAM GALLAGHER … “Aaah, there he is, still wearing his little kagooly thing (always prepared for the rain is Liam), still waving a tambourine about. Gives him something to do I suppose.  ‘Tonight I’m a rock and roll star’…yeah, just without your big brother because you still can’t stand to be within a 50 mile radius of eachother.

“Was his voice always this nasal? Has he got more nasal as he’s got older? Do people generally get more nasal?

“Ooh..look over there. Someone’s actually standing on someone else’s shoulders…Christ…that looks a bit risky. I hope he’s not going to go crashing down on top of the guy in front of him. They’ll both end up needing neck braces.

“I used to love these Oasis songs but seriously what’s happening here Liam? …He’s  killing them. “Killing” not in a good way.  Still looking moody. As snarly and swaggery as ever. Bet he was a nightmare to live with. “No, I haven’t put the fucking bins out Patsy. No I don’t want to watch fucking Love Island Nicole”….poor Patsy, poor Nicole. Wonder if either of them are there? Patsy’s probably meditating at home.

“Hang on that’s David Beckham….and Brooklyn? What are they doing there? Are David and Liam mates? Where’s Posh? Is Posh pouting round these fields somewhere in her designer wellies? Fast forward…new material….nah…fast forward…still new material… fast forward…. Bye Liam.”


GOLDFRAPP…  Nice one Alison. She hasn’t let us down, bonkers outfit. What are those sleeves? They look like deflated black balloons or my weekly bin liners containing a scant amount of light-weight rubbish.

“Ah, love this track……love this one too. Can’t beat a good bit of electro pop. How old is Alison?  How old  was I when I saw her play in London?  Is she older than me? Do I look that old? Look at her strutting about. So cool.  Has she got kids? Does she turn up on the school run wearing leather catsuits and shades?

“Oh look, Sammy the cat isn’t impressed…there he goes, slinking past the TV, not even giving Alison a second glance! Where’s he off to?”

FOO FIGHTERS….”Do I like them? Never convinced. Let’s give them a whirl… Dave Grohl….ah yes, angry singing, lots of head-shaking. LOTS of head-shaking. More head-shaking. Surely that can’t be good for him? “He’ll do himself a mischief”,  as someone over 95 might say. No. Not so keen on this. Bye Dave. Farewell Foos.   NEXT…..

royal blood 4 at 22.23.12

ROYAL BLOOD…”Not entirely sure who they are. The little pic on iPlayer has lured me in. Play. This is more like it! Ah yes, recognize this track. The lead singer’s actually quite cute, not how I imagined him from the radio at all. And young. There’s only two of them. Singer. drummer. How come they’re making so much noise? Can you play bass and high notes on one guitar? At the same time? If I’d practiced more would I have been able to do this?

“(Kind reader, I’d just like to point out I achieved a merit in my grade one guitar two years ago and subsequently performed Dolly Parton’s Jolene to 12 people in a pub in Camberwell).

“I like this. I like this a lot. Much more rock and roll and actually energetic,(unlike Radiohead “bored- dad” guitarist)…ah, suppose the youth have energy on their side – look the crowd love it too. There’s a little pool of moshers buzzing wildly about like demented blue bottles armed with cans of lager. Bet they’re spilling those drinks everywhere.

“What’s this…the singer’s cracking open some champagne on stage?…he’s talking; oh he’s actually quite posh. He’s a posh boy! Public school? I reckon so. Royal Blood?  That would be ironic. Cute and good at pouting while doing very fast things with his fingers on those strings. Watch him go! Mr Nimble Fingers. Nice eyelashes too. I’m definitely going to google him later…

(Watches the whole set in full, then rewinds to watch choice bits again. Later googles to discover lead singer is called Mike and comes from West Sussex. Drummer is called Ben and also comes from West Sussex. Checks out Mike on google images.  Checks out dates for Royal Blood’s UK tour but realises their London dates clash with geriatric netball and a planned Depeche Mode gig as the O2). Hey ho.

royal blood 04 at 22.31.10

Right, ED SHEERAN, BARRY GIBB…CHIC? …”Nah, think I’ll save them for tomorrow…. maybe. That’s enough Glastonbury for one night.

Right, no tent to locate in a state of inebriation, guy ropes to trip over or get garrotted by, bare-chested people wearing fairy wings and wild-eyed jugglers throwing fire to navigate. Comfortable bed here I come.   School-run in the morning. Now where’s Sammy the cat”…..

Still haven’t got round to catching up on Glasto fun and games. Here you go….iPlayer…. you’re welcome.














Tagged , , , , , ,


writer, editor specialising in TV
View all posts by TV TESS →

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

1 × three =