I dreamt that I was at a Footlights alumni event – not a performance, really, but just a tiny room with old Footlighters standing up and doing old material for each others’ enjoyment (like that would ever happen…). A young Dudley Moore was sitting behind me making sarcastic comments about everyone because he thought it was all a bit crap and wanted to be the centre of attention (I know Dudley Moore was never at Cambridge, but my subconscious seems to have a problem with facts), and next to me James Aylett gave me an encyclopaeidic commentary about all the performers and their material.
Then James Bachman got up with some random bloke and they sat on stools with guitars, and when he strummed a chord the whole room erupted and applauded ecstatically. And James Aylett said, “oh, brilliant, they’re doing the fudge song!”
In my dream, at least, I was well aware of the reputation of the fudge song – it had been spoken of in hushed tones when I was in Footlights as the damndest funniest song ever written by a Footlighter ever.
In actual fact, the song turned out to be a musical setting of the food chain of sea creatures, set to an old musical hall tune. I couldn’t hear all of the words because people were laughing so uproariously and singing along (even Dudley Moore begrudgingly stopped making sarcastic comments) – but I remember feeling a mixture of envy that the song could provoke such a huge response, and bewilderment because it seemed to me that it wasn’t very funny at all.
I woke up before they reached any kind of punchline.