If you build it, they will come…apparently.(1)

Yes, who knew that Wayne’s world would have such an insight into the growing world of construction site fetishists?* That isn’t, however, the kind of erection that we’re here to discuss.

If you’re wondering why Layers gigs have been coming along with the regularity of solar eclipses, planetary alignments and mountain-biking messiahs, one reason** is that our attention has been somewhat diverted by the gradual construction of a physical base. The old Layers HQ had two main problems: one being that the rent and upkeep on a labyrinthine, subterranean complex accessible only by means of an extinct volcano is enormous and the other being that it was entirely imaginary. This latter issue, in particular, made it difficult to practise in.

Realising after only seven short years that something had to be done, The Layers held a series of high-level meetings and soon drawings were being shown to an illustrious assortment of investors. In retrospect, the meetings probably should have been held without the presence of alcohol and the drawings not produced by four idiots with chubby wax crayons.  It seemed clear from the contemptuous laughter and restraining orders that investment was not going to be easily secured and so plan B was put into action.

The first element of this plan was horticultural reserve translocation, which was a bit of a mouthful and so was shortened to HRT on the briefing sheet. This lead to a bit of a misunderstanding but Roo’s feeling much better now and his voice is almost back to normal. Then, having forced Neil to simplify the briefing sheet, the band set about moving the shed, wisely waiting until near the end of the wettest period in history since the great flood. Slipping scaffolding poles beneath the structure, the boys bent their backs, lifted with all their might and, with grace and power, sank themselves knee deep into the mud. Oh well, if at first you don’t succeed, stop for a sandwich. At least that was Caleb’s suggestion. Thus refreshed, with no more effort that would be required to raise the Titanic and language befitting Malcolm Tucker getting his scrotum trapped in a mangle, the shed was moved a breathtaking fifteen feet from one side of Roo’s garden to the other.

This small endeavour having almost finished off the men known to music fans as the “fat four”, the prospect of digging out a foundation seemed on a par with starting one end of a transatlantic tunnel however, it turned out that Paul “Golden Bollard” Deacon was more than a little accomplished on the mini JCB that Roo had hired to play on while the hard work was being done. Before you could say “trench foot” the requisite patch was as flat and level as an oversized billiard table. Made from Mud. With no pockets. Look, Paul did a better job of the foundation that I did of that simile, OK?

This being an express project, a contractor was immediately taken on to lay a slab and construct a geometrically perfect frame and, in a matter of mere months, said contractor was making excuses as to why he hadn’t turned up and started the job. A few arguments later and the job was done. Well, half-done. And thoroughly cocked up.

Plan C therefore swung into action and a competent joiner was engaged to correct the creaking, timber folly. Now all that remained was external cladding, insulation, internal walls, insulating the floor and ceiling, waterproofing the roof, wiring, soundproofing, plastering, flooring, lighting, doors, windows and decoration. All simple enough jobs for appropriately qualified professionals. Unfortunately, Bodie and Doyle being unavailable, it was down to Neil and Roo - two men so ham fisted that they’ve been banned from Jewish boxing clubs***.

How would the dyspraxic duo cope with this challenge to their ingenuity? Assuming you’ve made it this far without jamming a spoon into your own eye, you’ll have to wait for part two of this blog to find out. As an added incentive, we’ll include some pictures.

Layers out (on their feet…)


* If you’ve gone off Googling this and are about to complain that there’s no such thing, then shame on you! Anyway, there probably is, you just don’t know the word for it…

**The other reasons, predictably enough, are the usual ones: laziness, incompetence, lack of ambition…

*** If you would like to complain about this or any of the jokes in Layers blogs, we wouldn’t be remotely surprised. Please address all grievances to Mr J Tarbuck c/o Chat Show, Early Eighties, Dreadful, Wilts.

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