I bloody well am. While others have parties to celebrate Eurovision, Big Brother and X-Factor finals, I have always made Election Night an event.
My first all-nighter was in 1992, only three months legally able to vote so smugly sitting on the sofa with my then girlfriend, who didn’t turn 18 for a few more days and was less than happy about this. The night started well,with the years of Toryism that I had known nothing other than looking over, post-Thatcherite Majorism strangled before it had chance to set root.
As the night turned to day, and blue spread across Peter Snow’s map like bread-mould on a rotting loaf, we realised that we had another few years of the same crap. I vowed to leave the country.
Ans so I did, which explains why in 1997 I was an exile, travelling across Spain and hearing the result in a sweltering Seville tasca . I remember thinking how happy I should be that at last, the Conservatives no longer had their grubby fingers in the pie, yet I felt underwhelmed, more concerned with how i was going to get to my destination on the Algarve rather than Blair. Still, I enjoyed it retrospectively:
I returned to the UK and by the time the next election rolled round, I was living in Tunbridge Wells. A town so posh I was shocked that Labour even bothered to stand a candidate. After a twelve hour shift working at the BBC, I returned home with my then girlfriend and a bottle of wine. Amber tired before long and went to bed ‘I’ll just stay up a little later, love, be up in a minute’. She eventually lost patience at 4am, and came storming downstairs to find me drunk on the sofa explaining ‘How could I come to bed? They are about to call Colne Valley!’ Amazingly, we remain friends, though any hope of romance died that night. Such is the price of my almost perverse fascination with election night.
2005 was such a foregone conclusion my housemates and I were pretty much drunk before they even called Sunderland East, and I remember little of it. I got my fix in 2008 though, albeit watching Obama sweep the worried potato McCain away in a flourish that was beyond Hollywood.
So tomorrow: get yourself comfy, some wine (preferably red), maybe some light snacks. Don’t turn the telly on until 10pm, and then take a break about 11pm, after the initial flow of dead-cert safe seats come in. Play a hand of rummy,watch an episode of The Thick Of It, catch last orders down the pub.
1AM, switch back on. The South will be turning blue, dappling yellow to the West. The North will be reddening, albeit with patch blue, yellow,and over the border in Scotland, whatever colour they give the SNP, my suggestion it should be ‘Tartan’ was rejected by the BBC Graphics Department. Now things get interesting.
Broxtowe has an expected call at 3am. I have Friday off, but even if I had a paper-round, Milk-round and a dozen chimneys to clean before breakfast (a likely scenario should Cameron come in) I would still stay up. Those allegories of ‘waking up with Soubry’ have rather ruined my ability to grab a decent nights kip.
I made enquiries a while back regarding the possibility of attending the count, taking place at the Pearson Centre. Nope, only open for the parties and accredited journalists. If anyone, including the candidates, want to invite me along I’m more than willing to accept. But if not, anyone working there who wishes to text me updates will be rewarded with me twittering your observations throughout the night. I think its legal. ****UPDATE****I have an insider on the count, so will be blogging through the night. Huzzah!
The Sun have been exemplary this year. Desperate to not back a loser, they have managed to out-do themselves not with the usual triumphant bombast, but with a desperate rage, and I sullied my hands to read the last couple of days of the Murdoch Arse-Wipe.
Space is given over to an piece by Andrew Lloyd Webber, a human unique for having a face uglier than his sphincter, saying how great Cameron would be if elected to PM. Then Simon Cowell, purveyor of mediocrity, gold over soul and really ugly jeans was given free range to bang on about his preference for Toryism. Cos, like, it would be good for the country. And absolutely NOTHING to do with paying less tax on their ill-earned gains. Nah, and I’d be a cynic and a Communist to think anything else.
Labour have Doctor Who and Bill Bailey. The Tories have the above, and Ken Barlow.
Oh, and the LibDems have Colin Firth.
Get up, get out, get voting. Then come home, log on,and watch me ranting into the early hours. I will show you where tomorrow.
PS: A source in the the Foreign Office (yeah, really, I don’t just hang out with deadbeats and winos, though the aforementioned individual is just about the latter) has claimed that should Cameron take a majority on Friday, Brown will be deposed by the end of May and Lord Mandelson will step in….
The individual in question is notoriously oblique, as to be expected from a former diplomat, so I may be being purposely misled, but if it is true I’ll have a scoop and be the new Guido Fawkes/Iain Dale, but rather less wanky than either…
PPS: The BNP complained I had not gave them adequate representation, the last word tonight is theirs: