Why pissed people make me laugh.

November 17, 2008

I was in the centre of Edinburgh on Sunday night, about 10pm. I was wandering up a street just off Princes Street and was passing some chain link fencing. It was up to protect people from the major roadworks that are currently messing up everyone’s lives.

Across the street I saw a bloke, who must have been proper-pissed, walk straight into the fence. And it was absolutely genius. First off, he was checking his watch when it happened. He had to pull his sleeve up so he could see his watch, a task that appeared almost beyond him. So he was paying no attention to where he was going. He looked up from his watch a nano-second before he collided with the fence.

Which is why it was so spectacular. Because when he hit the fence, he gave that brilliant pissed person expression of utter confusion. Like the fence had no right on earth to be there. And that’s what most actors seem to miss when they’re acting pissed. The “I’m not really sure what’s going on” aspect. Not just staggering and incoherent, but the belief that their view of things will be right, and that anyone who doesn’t share these views is a simpleton for not understanding.

One person who I’ve seen being a pretty good drunk is Timothy Stack in the My Name Is Earl series. He plays a local celebrity who’s always hammered. And he’s brilliant in his absolute randomness. Especially when he’s been stopped by the local constabulary.

But back to the guy I saw walk into the fence. It was so spectacular that I laughed out loud. And not just a little bit. I was still laughing 50 yards up the road. So if you decide to have a night out this Christmas that doesn’t involve lashings of alcohol, never fear. Just spend the night being entertained by the people who are drinking. There’s always one who manages to excel themselves and bring laughter to your life. See if you can go one better than me and film it. I’d pay good money to see CCTV of the bloke colliding with the fence.

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