A gay friend once told me that the problem with lesbian sex is that it doesn’t come to a natural end. With no “recovery time”, it can go on for hours, days, with neither party willing to admit that they’d quite fancy a nap now.
London, welcome to what clubbing is going to be like in 2015.
Yesterday, TFL announced that there will be 24-hour tubes on the Central, Piccadilly, Victoria, Jubilee and Northern lines every weekend from 2015. This seems like good news, saving you a shitload of money on Addison Lees and extending your night long beyond the nanny state’s 1am cut-off.
But make no mistake, 24-hour tubes will be the biggest change to London nightlife since the smoking ban. The whole basic DNA of a night out is going to be messed with and not necessarily for the better.
The first thing you’ll notice is that all your flaky friends who show up late for everything are going to show up even later. Without worrying about missing the last train, they’re going to stay doing coke in grotty pubs with whichever member of Swim Deep they’re trying to sleep with for hours, eventually showing up at the place you were supposed to meet at around half three, just as you’re coming down from your first pill and thinking about going home to watch Anchorman and drink squash. It’s going to put everyone out of sync.
To accommodate these late-arrivals, clubs are going to have to keep going longer into the morning, so you probably won’t get home until the following evening. If you think a big night out on Friday ruins the rest of your weekend now, imagine what it’s like if you’re only stumbling out of Corsica Studios at 3pm the next day. Monday mornings in the office are going to be like a scene from Soul Suvivor.
What the 24 hour tube map will look like. Suck it Bakerloo Line.
The other major issue is that it’s going to ruin the ability of meek, timorous men to chirpse girls at house parties. (I realise that’s a heteronormative way to look at things, but trust me, there’s a certain kind of straight man who would never get laid if it weren’t for missing the last tube.)
Normally, if you’re stuck at some person’s house somewhere in Hendon, you can be pretty assured that when the iPod playing Sean Paul runs out of battery and all the off licences in a one mile radius have closed, you’re going to get lucky. Most people at that party couldn’t possibly be expected to get back to the normal part of London they live in, so they're going to have to stay over. You're basically forced into sharing a pillow bed on the floor.
Equally, if you’re ever stuck in a nightclub in South London and you meet someone in the smoking area who lives round the corner, it’d be morally reprehensible of them to not invite you round after the last tube has gone.
But now there’s no excuse. “Missed the last tube, can I stay at yours?” is a question that won’t exist anymore (unless you live on the District line). Basically, millions of people aren’t going to have sex because of these changes.
Some of you might be feeling smug about all of this. Perhaps your clubbing days are behind you and you’ve moved out to the suburbs for a quiet life and a decent range of real ales. Well wipe that arrogant grin off your conceited fucking face. Because London’s about to get a bunch of new nightlife hot spots: Morden, Barnet and Redbridge. Places that were previously cultural blackspots, where the only live music you can see is the local synagogue choir performing 80s hair metal classics under the name Guns n Moses, will now be so easy to get to at any time of night that clubs are going to start popping up all over the place. Your peaceful cul-de-sac is about to be ruined by screaming arseholes, tins of Fosters in hand, screaming along to Bastille’s “Of The Night” on the way to a newly launched Proud club where Danny Dyer is DJing. You’re welcome.
Basically, your weekend is about to become a weird amorphous mess in which time stops taking any meaning whatsoever. You can go to the club just before daybreak and stay there till it’s night again. Or till it’s night again the next day. Clubbing is going to be like lesbian sex, only without the sex.
Follow Sam on Twitter @SamWolfson
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