As the single least witty member of All the King’s Men, it is a source of great bemusement as to why I have been tasked with recounting the events of Day 4. But oh! what a day 4 it was!
Having enjoyed our first college gig the previous night, 11 of the 12 men reconvened in the morning, each with the same pressing question. And not of the ‘where-are-we-going-and-why?’ ilk, or ‘who’s going to get the bagels?’, but more importantly: ‘Where the hell is Josh Cooter?’ Little did we know that he had been soundly asleep like the baby of the group he is in our generous host’s room, and had probably slept better than the rest of us. Leaving the Claremont College’s amazing hospitality behind, we were flattered to be recognised at the station by some locals, before hopping onto a double decker train back to LA. This was followed by an enjoyable 3 hour bus journey up the beautiful route 101 to Santa Barabara, where we would be privileged enough to perform with the four a cappella groups of UCSB.
The word ‘chilled’ doesn’t really do justice to the afternoon, and it was just what the doctor ordered. An informal and relaxed joint concert was combined with some exceptionally high standards in a cappella singing, and gave the Men a real insight to just how big the genre is out here. Special mention here must go to man of the march Tom Hindmarch, who managed to seduce a girl onto the stage mid-performance before Hugh Benson. This was followed by a trip to Giovanni’s for some really quite lovely pizzas with our hosts, and was definitely NOT our second such excursion in as many days.
As receptions go, the UCSB guys certainly do not disappoint, as was reflected by the after-party at which all the groups present. Choicest highlights of the day include:
- Breakfast bagels with cream cheese (followed by fruit for lunch)
- Impromptu performances of ‘Walking in Memphis’ at station platforms
- (Mexican cab driver to AtKM:) ‘I wouldn’t worry about the sharks, they don’t go for white guys… only Mexicans’
- (Angus when meeting host) ‘Hi, I’m Angus’… ‘Ah hey, great to meet you Haggis’
- John Roberts’ new imitative dance game which, having begun with 4 AtKM members, finished with an Anglo-American coalition effort of over 20.