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Not Big Sam: You don’t have to go looking for trouble in Brazil; sometimes it finds you

A lesson for those travelling with the Three Lions, based on my terror-filled adventures with Nigel Havers...

by Not Big Sam | June 17, 2014

The night was dark. Real dark. A blanket of black draped over everything in sight. A blanket blacker than tar. Blacker than Cheryl Cole’s match-list on Tinder.

A welcome breeze floated over this hot city. “F*ck me, that’s pleasant,” I thought, as it soothed my sultry skin.

I looked around me; at the lights and the people and the stars flirting with me from the sky. The neighbourhood was irascible. The smell of urine filled my nostrils. “F*ck me, that’s unpleasant,” I thought, as it filled my nostrils.

The cobbled streets heaved with revellers. Dames swarmed in and out of the crowded bars and cafes. Hot dames. Dames that looked like they could suck spicy chicken from a bone in two seconds flat and not even flinch. Every guy looked like a threat. Watching me with their eyes. All of their eyes. Their threatening eyes.

I was sweating. Sweating hard. The type of sweat that sticks your testicles to the inside of your thigh like Blu-Tack on a fridge. I was also flat on my back, in the middle of the road in a sketchy part of Rio de Janeiro. There was no doubt about it; I was in trouble. I was floundering like a monkey at a seminar.

All of a sudden I saw him. From the corner of my bruised eye, I saw him. Running towards me. Running past the bars and cafes and the hot dames and the watching eyes. Running towards me with a pool cue in his hand. Running towards me with fear scrawled over every inch of his face.

My adventures with Nigel Havers

“They’ve got rocket launchers, Sam!” he yelled.

“They’ve got actual f*cking rocket launchers!”

It was Nigel Havers. And he was carrying an obese woman on his shoulders. Sh*t just got real.

Nigel Havers with Not Big Sam

SIDEKICK: Nigel Havers with Not Big Sam as we toured with the Sensational Bastards of Coercion

Let me rewind here for a second and give you f*ckers a slice of context pie.

Back in 2011, my great friend Nigel and I were part of a three-piece band called Leroy From Fame. We played straight-up tribal funk and we played it hard. Then Tracey Shaw decided she didn’t want to relaunch her putrid career in a funk trio and we were faced with a big decision; do we completely reinvent ourselves as a Latin-infused jazz duo or do we simply accept our fate and call it a day?

The decision was made, and The Sensational Bastards of Coercion were born. No sooner had we agreed upon this momentous change of direction than we were organising a three-month road trip across South America to immerse ourselves in the rhythms and styles that would influence our fledgling symphonic odyssey.

In order to further our rock ‘n’ roll credentials, we decided to travel across the continent on motorbikes. Well, one motorbike. And a sidecar. And yes, I was in the sidecar. (Let’s take a moment and get it over with, shall we? Hahaha. Isn’t Big Sam in a sidecar a really funny image? With his goggles on. And a big helmet squeezed on to his big stewpot head. Oh, let’s all laugh. Wallace and f*cking Gromit. If Gromit was an American Bison instead of a pooch.)

Guffaw all you want you heartless ghouls, but we had a blast. We swam with Pink River Dolphins in Peru, lassoed a sex pest in the salt flats of Bolivia and had a foursome with the most enchanting pair of conjoined twins I’ve ever laid eyes on in Argentina. We felt like road warriors, traversing across scorched earth, devouring new cultures and imbibing ourselves with the very liquor of total freedom.

What I know about Brazil…

Then we arrived in Brazil. For those who have never been, Brazil is like a high-class escort; beautiful, dangerous and filled with mystery. You’ll see things in this incredible land that you’ll see nowhere else on the planet. I saw one lad there that was basically just a torso and a head. I tried to grab him to have a bit of a play around, but he was far too quick on his skateboard.

Our time in Brazil was imbued with delirium. I spent most of the time there whizzed off my face on shrooms. One particularly hedonistic bender ended with me roller-blading through a local hospice singing Springsteen’s ‘Streets of Philadelphia’ as a sword-wielding Nigel ordered a bemused nurse to hand over “every last drug capsule in this filth-ridden institute of despair”. It was just an incredibly open and creative time for us both. I also had sex up a tree one night. Genuinely incredible.

This starry-eyed period of inventiveness soon came crashing to the ground, however, one boozy night in the Zona Norte area of the city. We were drinking in a dingy little sweat-box called esmagar o meu rosto com suas bolas de gordura. To say this bar was a sh*thole was an understatement of gargantuan scope. I’ve never been anywhere so replete with lamentable and deplorable individuals.

Mos Eisley Cantina has nothing on this place,” smirked Nigel as we supped on a pair of cool Caipirinhas.

I didn’t really get the reference, but ploughed on nonetheless.

“I know, right?” I replied, before laughing for a full 15 seconds. A high-five sealed the deception.

Not Big Sam nightclub

MURDER ON THE DANCERFLOOR: Well, it was murder trying to get Nigel away

After polishing off a few more lime-based cocktails we were ready for a dancefloor. We didn’t make it, though. As I Moonwalked my way to the centre of the room and towards a bevy of expectant prostitutes, I inadvertently bumped into a rather burly man leaning against a payphone, spilling the dregs of my Caipirinha over his rather magnificent leather slacks in the process.

“Você quer dançar, bolas frutados?” he barked, flicking open a switchblade and licking his lips.

I didn’t understand what he said, but I knew it was bad. My natural inclination in such burgeoning altercations is to stab my house key into the person’s throat and run. The alcohol had taken its toll, however, and my instincts were not as sprightly as usual. I decided to stare him out and use my mother tongue as an alternative weapon.

I looked him dead in the eye and in with a slow and deliberate rhythm said:  “YOUR MOTHER HAS HORRIBLE SEX ORGANS AND I BELIEVE HER TO BE UNCLEAN.”

The anger in his eyes was both instant and terrifying.

“What you say, gringo?”

He spoke English. Oh Christ.

We fled a hail of bullets

The next few minutes were a bit of a blur. Punches were thrown, and tables were overturned. Aside from that, all I can clearly remember is pulling Havers out of the most obese woman I’ve ever seen and, under a hail of bullets, glass and anti-English slurs, somehow managing to drag him out of the bar and onto the streets. Once we got outside my Olympic-standard thigh muscles sprang into action. I sprinted down the cobbled streets like Stuart Hall running after an ice-cream truck. As I got farther away from esmagar o meu rosto com suas bolas de gordura and closer towards relative safety, I reached out behind me for Nigel. He wasn’t there. He’s a wonderful actor, but he just doesn’t have my athleticism. I stopped dead and turned around. Nigel was still stood barely 30 yards outside the bar.

“What the f*ck are you doing, you bouncy-haired ballbag?” I roared.

“I love her Sam. I don’t know her name and I don’t speak her language, but I f*cking love that hog in there.”

Before I could even argue with such nonsense, he turned on his heels and headed straight back into the bar. I fell to the ground in teary exhaustion.

“Ah, for f**k sake!” I opined as I hit the concrete.

I blacked out for a few minutes. Real black. Blacker than… f*ck it, you get the picture. When I awoke, Nigel was running towards me, with his new love draped over his soon to be broken shoulders. I was more interested in the shoulders of the two muscle-bound bastards that were motoring after Nigel, however, as sure enough, across the breadth of their clavicle, scapula and humerus bones rested a pair of rusted, but still reasonably potent-looking RPG-7s.

Needless to say, a combination of cunning and terror-fuelled adrenaline meant we were somehow able to evade the two bruisers, and escape with our lives. The three of us hid in a dumpster out the back of a slaughterhouse, and spent the night there.

In the midst of pig carcass globs and strips of rotting beef, I was forced to curl up into a ball in a darkened bin, and listen to Nigel Havers penetrating a corpulent Brazilian lady, as bloody-thirsty drug lord-henchman patrolled the streets outside looking for me. As far as disgusting nights out go, this was right up there with Newcastle.

Not Big Sam in Rio

England fans should learn from this

As the thousands of English fans that have travelled to Brazil for the World Cup bathe in the splendour of an already-magnificent tournament, and enjoy all the riches the host country has to offer, I offer this story as a warning. Yes, Brazil has beautiful beaches, astounding scenery and vaginas so smooth you could spread them over toast. But it also has menace. It’s a poor country and, as a result, one of compromised ethics.

You don’t have to go looking for trouble in Brazil; sometimes it finds you.

Enjoy yourself, lads. Drink it all in. Plop your fingers into as many cultural pies as you can. But please be aware of your surroundings and, above all, just be vigilant.

And, for the love of all that is pure and serene, if you’re going to insult a Brazilian drug lord about the state of his mum’s muff, try to make sure it’s one that doesn’t speak English.

Not Big Sam is a parody account on Twitter which can be found here. It is in no way related to Sam Neill, Sam Adams, Sam Allardyce or Sam Fox. (…with apologies to fans of Raymond Chandler)

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