Monday, February 23, 2009

The Bloke In MVC: An Apology

He's probably forgotten about it but the memory of it is haunting me.

A couple of years ago, CD and DVD shop MVC was closing down. All stock was for sale at knockdown prices. Of course, I filled my boots. You don't look a gift horse in the mouth (yes, I did buy some Joni Mitchell).

I was umming and aahing over the Jah Wobble anthology. I wasn't overly keen on him though I did enjoy a 12" he did with Holger Czukay and of course the Public Image stuff is fantastic.

So I thought "sod it" and took it to the counter.

The assistant looked at me with horror. "Good choice," he said, but didn't leave it at that.

"I honestly didn't think anybody was going to buy it," he said. "I'd made sure it wasn't easy to find. And I would never have believed in a million years that somebody in Bexleyheath would want to buy a Jah Wobble album."

He wanted it for himself. The shop was closing down, he was losing his job and I was taking his only compensation.

I felt awful. But I didn't stop him scanning the barcode, didn't stop him taking my card. My signature was unwavering and confident.

I played the CD when I got home. Apart from the Public Image stuff and the one track with Holger Czukay, it was shit.

I played it again last week. It was still shit. And I felt the guilt rise up in me. And it won't go away.


  1. Don't be so damn silly. Think what you saved him from.

    Even though I have never met or heard Mr Wobble.

  2. They don't broadcast The Wombles here in Canada.

  3. Let's track him down - how hard can it be?

    Then you can make it right and achieve closure. And, if it all takes more than ten minutes, Betty can film it and get a channel 4 series out of it.

    It'll be a hearwarming journey!

  4. You weren't the guy who bought the last Pick'n Mix from Woolworths and sold it for nearly 15 thousand quid - were you??

  5. Yep, track him down via the magic of the internet.

    Then get a large stick and try beating some proper musical appreciation into him.

  6. Fuck him, if he was a record shop assistant worth his salt he would have put it under the counter in the disguise of a customer order until it went into a sale yonks ago. Bloody amateur.

  7. Vicus - Maybe he said the same about all the CDs he was selling.

    Scarlet - But I'm not. It's not like me at all.

    MJ - Jah Womble is a better name. It was Sid Vicious who coined the name Jah Wobble.

    Beth - If only Jim'll Fix It were still on.

    Kaz - I pushed in in front of a 5 year old.

    Rol - With age comes wisdom. He might be listening to Neil Young now.

    Inwardly Confused - That sounds like the voice of experience.

  8. Didn't they have Live At Wobbly Stadium?

    You are prolly going straight to hell so bring it along and you can give it to him when you meet.

    I worked in a record shop so I am all too familiar with all of the lying and chicanery that goes on to move's like a bloody sweatshop.

    You wouldn't believe how many times a day we would be encouraged to say, "most die hard fans and critics agree that THIS is their best album"...EVER!

    So don't feel bad.

  9. "I was umming and aahing over the Jah Wobble anthology"

    That's probably the first time those words have ever been used in that order Geoff. Well done!

  10. Donn - Like every Oasis album after the second one?

    Rog - I'm pushing back the boundaries.