(From Plan B, April/May 2006.)


Killing Joke


Why I Love . . . The Columbia Hotel



"I've spent 25 years of my life in this fucking hotel.  I love it! I'm the only person around here that's allowed to come down for breakfast in my dressing gown with no shoes on!  Last year Killing Joke came here, we had a late night, and I left the bathwater on. When I came out I heard the door banging, and I got off the bed and put my feet down and there's a foot of water! It was going everywhere, and my bags were floating! Of course, I'd been there for years, I didn't know what to say. They were banging on the door saying 'Is everything OK in there? Have you got a leak?' and I'm going 'Oh, er no, my bath's not running!' and I did a runner out of the fire escape. Then I didn't know how to come back in, because there was a bit of a complaint. I thought, 'Oh God, I can never show my face in that hotel again, after all these years! I'm so ashamed!' Raven says, 'I know what to do, we send them a bunch of flowers and a rubber duck!' Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha! And that's what we did, so we're back here now. I just walked down the stairs and there was Alison sitting there on reception. I said, 'I feel so ashamed.' She didn't even look up, she said, 'And so you should.'  Ha ha ha ha ha ha ha!"