visitor analysis

Tip the Lady Out of Bed

It’s the late 1960s

It’s a family outing

To Battersea Pleasure Gardens

It’s definitely winter

It’s got to be the late afternoon

It’s dark and there’s a slither of a moon

There’s a hundred thousand multicoloured carnival lights

But my memory of seems to be in just black and white

There’s the rumbling and rushing 

From the giant roller-coaster

At Battersea Pleasure Gardens

If I were a year or two older 

I’d be on it like a flash that’s for sure

But you’ve got to be 12 or more

So we settle for the ghost train 

And the bumper cars rides

Which my dad lets me drive whilst he covers his eyes

There was something in the air

I can still hear the sound of

Thunderclap Newman startin’

And all the fun of the fair

At Battersea Pleasure gardens

There are side stalls and stages and small shooting ranges 

At Battersea Pleasure gardens

With a little bit of luck

You can hook a plastic duck

And win a prize

The kinds of things no one actually buys

An inflatable banana, 

A green elephant, a flag

A lonely looking goldfish in a transparent bag

Just near the roller coaster

A crowd of people gather

At Battersea Pleasure Gardens

They’re watching and they’re waiting 

But for what for I’m not able to tell

There’s a cheer and the sound of a bell 

There’s the overpowering smell of cigarettes and beer

And some language that a little Jewish boy shouldn’t hear

I push to the front of the crowd 

Kicking aside the empty burger cartons

With my mouth open wide 

At Battersea Pleasure Gardens

Now let me describe the scene

It’s seven balls a shilling

If you want to try it

But under the rollercoaster juts

Instead of as row of coconuts

A woman in a bed

Yes you heard me right

Above the bed on the wall there’s a target 

And if somebody hits the bulls eye

The bed tips up

The lady falls out

And she ain’t coconut shy

It’s a real live lady 

In a polka dot bikini

Standing right in front of me

She wiggles and she shimmies and she shakes

Until my pupils are the size of Pontefract Cakes

She does a catwalk turn

She tilts her head

And in less than 7 seconds she’s back in the bed 

Tip the lady, tip the lady

That’s what the sign said

Tip the lady, tip the lady

Tip the lady out of bed

Well I stood there for ages 

Watching over and over

At Battersea Pleasure Gardens

With my dad right beside me 

Doing exactly the same

Til my mum came along and dragged us away

And still carrying my gold fish

I listened to them row

Trying to make sense of the shame I felt now

Through the car back window

I watch the flashing letters of

Of Battersea Pleasure Gardens

Getting smaller and smaller 

Like a television dot into the rain

We never went back there again

But now every time I hear a ringing bell sound

I see a girl in a bikini - or is it the other way round?

I just went there to play

But this risqué 

Rated scene got thrown into the bargain

It made me the man I am today

Battersea Pleasure Gardens

A couple of years later 

They closed the roller-coaster

At Battersea Pleasure Gardens

There was a terrible crash

And the fair was no longer fun at all

Now there’s just a plaque on the wall

Where the Tip the Lady Out of Bed stall used to be

And there’s the shadow of the ten year old me

The lady in the bikini lives in a retirement home

And ten year olds today 

Have hardcore porn on their phone

Those days are gone

But the same old things go on ad infonatum

And so does this song

At Battersea Pleasure Gardens

Tip the lady, tip the lady

Still going round in my head

Tip the lady, tip the lady

Tip the lady out of bed