No Sleep Till King’s Lynn! A Norfolk surrealist writes in….
Fantums VS Phantoms
By Kenny Fantum
As a nipper I was obsessed with Lego. I could build anything from a tub of basic blocks. By age 5, I was taking one day off school a week for dedicated Legoing tuition from a Danish Grandmaster. My parents struggled to meet his fees, but somehow they made ends meet and soon the payoff was a residency showcase of my work in the Norwich Castle Musueum. I had built an exact replica model of the Bayeux Tapestry, which won high praise from all five corners of the County.
Soon my fame had spread further afield, and despite crying myself to sleep every night gripped by the fear of impending nuclear war, my days were all-out block building tour-de-forces. My 1:75 scale model of the Falklands War Goose Green landings was a permanent fixture in the V&A Design Museum 1983-1988. Simon Weston himself send me letters praising my ‘wonderfully naive realisation of war in yellow and blue bricks moved him more than the poetry of WW1 hom-soldiers ever had’
After leaving education it seemed only natural to enter the building trade. Alas, it was an error of nuclear proportions. It didn’t sate my creative urges, and it soon dawned on me that my passion was in deconstruction. That was the key element of Lego, the desire to reconstruct, to redesign, to reform the very landscape with my own two hands. Essentially, I wanted to play god with bricks and mortar.
The very next day, myself and my twin brother Karl founded FANTUM DEMOLITION, East Anglia’s foremost tagteam destroyers of unwanted property.
Business boomed. We could take apart your average NCP 6 storey carpark in just 2 weeks, 75% of the bricks reusable and skips full of golf ball sized meticulously smashed concrete shards. We loved our work, we made the front cover of “Which Sledgehammer” and “Demolition News” eight times in 18 months; demolition groupies from as far afield as Suffolk, Lincoln and Kansas flocked to suck the wangs of the BadBoys of Knock (TM)
Unsurprisingly, when it was announced Wembley Stadium was to be demolished, the suits at the FA called on the super smash bros. I knew the honour of destroying the Wembley Twin Towers called for a dignity and respect only myself and Karl could bestow upon the famous old ground. We worked alone, sleeping on-site in the Rascal and putting in 21 hour shifs. We used hand tools only, Wembley had been built with honest sweat and toil, its destruction would be the same. The Gods of demolition were surely satisfied with this arrangement.
The electricians had rendered the building safe, stripping all power from the site. We Fantums didn’t touch the steelwork either; it essentially being a giant Meccano set, the geeky nemesis of the artisan Lego.
Working late one evening with only our head torches to light the path, we finished bashing the staircase and entered the former changing rooms. Hallowed territory. As Karl pushed the Home Dressing Room door, I caught a flicker out the corner of something as I moved my head torch. It looked like a mural on the far end of the corridor. I turned my head back, and saw it again. A man howering in mid air? I called to Karl and he turned too, the extra illumination provided by his head torch making the image clear. It was a mural of Bobby Moore, aloft on team-mates shoulders, holding the prized Jules Rimet skyward!
Immediately my mind began computing the technical issues of removing this wonderful art intact. Should I switch from my usual sledgehammer with alloy bar and composite gel comfort grip to a lighter headed mallet with standard rubberised grip?
I was removed from my musings by Karl, shrieking like a girl. He was pointing and going “K-k-k-kenny…m-m-moving”. He wasn’t a mong stutterer or anything, he was scared. I looked at the gloomy mural…it appeared to be moving towards us!
I moved closer to Karl, our brawny upper arms touching and providing a shred of comfort. The Bobby Moore figure inched closer, my grip on the sledgehammer with alloy bar and composite gel comfort grip tightened. Moore began howling “Whoooooooooooooo Goooooooooeess Theeeeeeeeeeeerrre” and the horde of carriers mimicked his cries. Sweat formed on my bumhoop like a riptide.
Closer and closer the foul apparition inched. It became evident that the horde carrying Moore aloft were not his ’66 teammates, but the pale skeletal faces framed by wild untamed ginger hair and tartan bonnets meant something else. Closer now, we could see the bare-chested ghost torso’s wore leather waistcoats and blue and white scarfs. Their bony, deathly arms and hands cradles pieces of net and post. It was the Scotland fans what done that pitch invasion and smashed the goals up, bizarrely united under the clearly spectral leadership of their great enemies foremost Captain.
Moore and the horde stopped a yard in front of us. “Gimme yer jewels, gimme yer jewels” he hissed and cackled like a cockney-skeletor. He repeated his demands louder, the horde of scots copying his mantra. The foul stench of the undead overpowered my nostrils and I vomited over my dungarees and wellies.
Moore reached down from his perch, the arm brandishing what I had thought the Jules Rimet was actually holding the skull of Graham Kelly, the glasses and weird mouth still intact after death. This was it. We were paralysed by fear. This was the end of the Fantum Bros.
As the arc of the repugnant skull came down towards my own handsome head, I was suddenly pulled back hard and slammed onto the floor, bashing my ass bone painfully. Karl flew back too, crashing down beside me. We looked up, our headtorches picking out another group emerging in the gloom. Their leader stepped forth, and a wave of calm enveloped my body and brain. Who was the skeletal saviour clad in leather and with a beautiful mane of black hair? Michael Jackson? No, it had a nose and even though dead the sexual magnatism was undenyable…it was Michael fuggen Hutchence!
“LEAVE THEM MAYTE…YER BEEFS WITH ME YER GREAT HOON” roared Hutchence. The Moore horde stopped their jewel based mantra.
“W-w-what is this?” I bleated.
“Mayte, I’m Michael Fuggen Hutchence, this is my fuggen stadium, me and the INXS dominated this venue in ’92. Its where my soul yearns to be”
He sashayed forwards and slowly pulled a huge ghostly wang from his leather trousers. Moore and the horde visibly flinched.
Aware of another group to Karls side, I found courage anew to speak up
“So, w-who are you lot then?”
A demure sprite in backwards baseball cap and shorts stumbled forwards
“We’re Jesus Jones, sir. We were with INXS back in ’92. It was all downhill since then. We were dead for years creatively, it made sense to…”
“The Jones are on my side, forever supporting the INXS in glory…This is our venue Moore, you and yer caber sucking brethren are no match for the Antipodean Sexmaster. Moore! BRACE yerself, I’m LETting these boys go”
With a quick chuckle at his wordplay and a cheeky wink which melted my booming heart, Zombie Hutchence then turned serious and emitted a war cry, or possibly a refrain from Suicide Blonde, I couldn’t be sure, and launched headlong into the enemy masses. The scots scattered, dropping Moore who tried to protect himself as he fell by forming into his defensive Pele-tackle posture, but it was no match for the undead boner of Hutch. He seized his opponent in a glorious headlock and began skullf*****g him at a rate of thrusts I couldn’t begin to comprehend. As INXS and Jesus Jones steamed forward to join the battle, Karl and I picked each other up and ran from the ruins.
We spent the rest of the night huddled in the Rascal crying and hugging each other as the Wembley legends battled for spectral supremacy of their most famous venue.
The next morning, the cold light of day returning some confidence to our bones, myself and Karl went against everything we believed in and rigged the remaining Wembley structure with TNT. Wedging a beautifully dismantled brick on the accelerator of the Rascal we detonated the spooky stadium from range before disbanding Fantum Demolition on the spot and returning home, to Norfolk, never to speak of our torment until this moment.