Google+ Badge

20091214

Thursday December 19, 1974


A more congenial day. Leave the office with Sarah and 12 and we do a bit of shopping in town before going our separate ways. Funny girl is our Sarah. A perfect Angel but temperamental beyond human understanding.

I get myself a Monty Python LP, the one I heard in Worcester, and buy Dad's Xmas present - a Perry Como LP. Really should stay in Leeds to buy all my presents but can't be bothered at all. Nip onto a bus and home in time to see the final part of 'The Forsyte Saga'. I was quite emotional when Soames passed away at the end. Sat choked in a heap besides the lit Christmas tree.

David calls for me at about 8.10 after queueing for a tank full of petrol before the 10p price increase at midnight. To the Stone Trough for one drink. MM, Marita and Denny are awaiting our arrival. Move on to the school at 8.30 where the lovely Christine Braithwaite joins us. What a bloody scorcher she is - and a good deal more mature than when I last saw her. Denny goes off with Martin Vere-Bunjowski all night and she barely says a full sentence to me._______.A good deal of kissing goes on underneath the mistletoe. Kicked out at 11.30 and move on to Denny's - that is David ame me -where we laugh over supper until 1.30. Home in the car.

-==-

Wednesday December 18, 1974

Utterly shagged out all day. Never I have experienced such bloody tiredness in the whole of my long, laborious and important life. Tiredness, I have found, affects people in many different ways. I become a moronic structure, resembling nothing more than a over-stewed cabbage, or root vegetable. Sarah fades away to a sweet damsel of the sweetest nature. Carol pretends she's no different, but Kathleen's situation is unfortunate. Miss Rainford becomes quite nasty and quick tempered. This is a depressing phenomena when one is attempting to enjoy the few snatches of Christmas festivities one is privileged to have. You'll be aware from this that work was unkind to me today. Bloody glad to leave I was. Unpleasantness is hardly the word for it.
Sit in front of the TV all evening while John departs to bed at an early hour with something resemmbling more than a usual chill. Pnuemonia for Christmas?

-==-

Tuesday December 17, 1974

To Leeds with John on a 33 bus at about 7.45pm. We meet Chris in the Highlander where he's been waiting for about an hour. The weather is absolutely freezing cold and we attempt to thaw out with whisky and orange. After two minutes we switch to pints of lager - a shame really. Dave, Lynn, Sue and Peter come at about 9 o'clock and I begin worrying about whether the two youngsters will obtain admission in Rockerfellas. At 9.30 we nip across to the Vintage where we have a few drinks with Kathleen, Sarah and mob. Little spot of bother at Rockerfellas with Peter - but we're all admitted. Once again Sarah is overpoweringly stunning. Charming and too glamorous to be capably described. I feel she entices me, and leads me on on these occasions. November 5 was the last occasion, and she did the same this time. We had a few cosy dances together, and rarther a lot, though not enough, necking. Lynn says that ____is positively envious at my 'catch'. All the girls were great and amused at Eileen catching John off his guard. Even Kathleen laughed at the sight of my brother and Miss Byram copulating openly before a wide range of the assembled multitude. John and I home in a taxi at 2 with Sarah (swoon) and Carol. I was in the back with the ladies - and need I say more than the fact that I paid more attention to Miss Collis than I did Mrs Johnson.

-==-

Monday December 16, 1974

Reflections on the closure of the relationship of Mr Andrew Graham and Miss Linda Smith: Dave informed me of this fact while preparing the Christmas tree in the garage last night. I was dumbfounded to say the least, because I always expected them to settle down, after a society wedding at the local parish church of course. Andy is a bit cut up, but Miss Smith herself is cool and unmoved. Reasons? Apparently, Linda is overworked at college and can't do with Andy and her school kids at the same time.

Also, the papers hold another, more amusing story about the closure of a love affair. Princess Elizabeth of Yugoslavia seems to have changed her mind about Richard Burton. The Royal marriage of 1975 is off. It seems to me that Prince Paul has put his foot down. Another factor is that the princess is sick of Richard's drinking habits. 48 million bottles of Scotch a week is a bit much.

The Uncle Harry Mystery is over. He rolled up at 4 this afternoon and collected the car. He didn't say much to Dad, who was the only one in, and cleared off after swigging a cup of coffee. Silly sods, these Rhodeses are at times. Oh, Uncle John and Auntie Sheila are coming to stay after Christmas for one night. Denny was thrilled when I informed her this afternoon by telephonic communication.

The Christmas spirit is more noticeable in me this year, methinks. Need I say what was troubling me last year? Yes, you've guessed. It was HER. Well, no one's getting me down this year and 1974 has been one free of heartbreaking and upsetting consequences.

-==-

Sunday December 15, 1974


Out of bed just before 12. Mum starts he Christmas cleaning campaign in preparation for the Christmas tree which Dave B is going to bring round later in the day. (My calling Dave Baker 'Dave B' and Dave Lawson 'Dave L' must cease. In future Dave L will be David and Dave B will be Dave).

Mum and Dad are most peturbed about the mysterious disappearance of Uncle Harry, who has left no trace.
Have chicken for lunch and listen to Jimmy Savile on the radio. Evidently, the lads who accompany John on his drinking and whoreing escapades think he's so hilarious being infatuated by the music of George Macrae. All we hear about at home and in the pub is wild, passionate statements about how good Barry White & George Macrae are.

The local paper announces that Shelley and Clive were married last week in Menston. I was quite choked to see my old friend staring up at me from the newspaper, clad in her white bridal outfit. Mum says she's now crossed Shelley's phone number from the pad because she doesn't want me associating with married women. Barbara was married in August, and I think this latest marital alliance closes a chapter of my life. These women will never be forgotten.

News: Linda finished with Andy this weekend. Most people are stunned. To the Hare and Hounds with Chris, Carol and Andy. Then to the Station in Yeadon, and finally the Yorkshire Rose. Home at 11.30 where we see the Christmas tree erected in all its glory.

-==-

Saturday December 14, 1974

Death of Prince Albert, 1861. George VI born 1895. Uncle Tony's birthday. 39th I think. Mum, Dad, Auntie Eleanor and Uncle Jack plus Uncle Harry trot off to Bradford in order to pursue birthday celebrations with the Gadsby clan. They come home in the early hours minus Uncle H - who disappeared in Bradford. Naturally, they are all peturbed about the whereabouts of his person, but one thing's for sure, we have his car parked on our drive awaiting the return of its master.

I was at the YP until 12 when I met John in WH Smiths. We spend three hours on a so-called shopping for Christmas presents spree but after this substantial time lapse I haven't laid hands on one present, and have instead a new pair of shoes and a woolly cardigan. Home on a crowded 55 bus. We sit around waiting for food - in my case, the first meal of the day! Eat fish and chips twice.

To the Hare and Hounds in Kevin Teale's van after arranging to meet Dave Lawson who rang at 8.30. After depositing me at the Hare John and pals go off to Ilkley again and say that they'll see me at the Cow & Calf later. I sit quite alone with a lager until 8.30. Ring Denny who says Adrian didn't turn up tonight after they'd arranged a reconciliation.

Dave and Sandra come in at 8.30, followed by Andy and the Smiths. We all go to the Black Horse - a detestible joint but they all like it - and move on to the Cow & Calf without Dave who didn't fancy it. Wish I hadn't gone. Rubbish it really was. Carol Smith and one of the Denby boys started having a relationship. Peter brings me home after 1am and I have a laugh with Lynn and Dave before going to bed.

-==-

Friday December 13, 1974

Princess Marina, Duchess of Kent, born 1906. Friday the Thirteenth. I'm not saying I'm superstitious in any way, but one must always be careful on these days. Undoubtedly, if being terrified of walking under a ladder is classed among superstitious things I'm the world's leading superstitious person - but to my mind, not walking under a ladder is an inbred thing, and besides, one may as well be on the safe side.

Go to the Hare in Kevin Teale's Bedford van. The place is done out for the coming festivities and Sandra L informs me that she's leaving tonight. Horror of horrors. The place won't be the same without a Lawson behind the bar. In one way or another I am with Sandra for the majority of the evening - leaving the others to their own devices. John goes off with his old school pals to Ilkley, on a whoreing expedition. We, that is Keith, Chris, Carol, Andy, Linda, Dave, Lynn, George, Jane, Christine Dibb and dear Christine White - all go to the Commercial. From this little but comfortable abode we move on to Wikis, where I use one of Dave B's spare cards. Don't really enjoy it, but I am pleased when Kevin Teale offers me £25 for my suit. Hell, it only rushed me £25 in May, so if he buys it I will have had seven months wear out of it for no cost at all. Perhaps he was a bit pissed, but I was flattered all the same to think that somebody wanted the clothes I was stood up in.

-==-

Thursday December 12, 1974

Warmer day than yesterday and not too frosty. Work all morning until 12 and then go into Leeds with Kathleen where she buys a massive cardigan for her Dad's Christmas present. We then move on to Boots where she gives me some ideas about the numerous things I've got to get before Xmas Day. At 1 she leaves me to go back to work and I wind my way through Debenham's and back to Boots. Messing around near the aftershave department I bump into Marita & we mutter and moan about having to buy presents, and she slings a few suggestions at me. We then go into the street and bump into dear old Dave Baker outside Schofields. M rushes off back to work and Dave & I go to the Ostlers for a couple of drinks. We discuss Lynn over pints of lager. He tells me he's bought her a bottle of Pernod for Christmas, amongst other things. Another drunken festive season coming up. I buy Lynn a pair of slippers - not miserable granny type - but soft violet ones with large furry tops. Yes.

No Monty Python tonight which is rarther unfortunate really.

-==-

Wednesday December 11, 1974

James II abdicated 1688. An absolutely perishing day. By the way things are going I forsee Bing Crosby's dream about a white Christmas coming true.

Eileen and I go shopping at lunchtime. We drift around the centre of town in agonising cold and get fish and chips from a little place near the Corn Exchange. Come back to the YP after an hour and with nothing to show for it.

Pleasant afternoon with Sarah. It certainly seems ages since we were in bed together that night at the Johnson residence - and our relationship is degenerating into a mediocre sort of thing. May have better luck with her at Christmas.

38 years ago today King Edward VIII renounced the throne, in order to have his way with Wallis Simpson. Every other book published this year is either on the subject of the Duke of Windsor or the Royal Family since 1917.

A rumpus in the Press about the Prince of Wales spotted at an X-certificate film 'Percy's Progress' at a London cinema. His Royal Highness is reported to have told the usherette that he had 'enjoyed it very much'. And we are all informed that he devoured an ice-cream in the interval. The film deals with a man who has had a penis transplant, and is a follow-up to 'Percy' a good film of a few years ago. A cartoon in the Daily Mail this morning implies that Mary Whitehouse wants a referendum on the monarchy, following this plebian act by our beloved heir.

John and I go to the Hare & Hounds with Mum & Dad, where we consume an excessive amount of alcohol. Following this we move on to the White Horse at Burley-in-Wharfedale, where cousin Dorothy resides. Unfortunately, she's having a night off, and we spend the last hour supping ale.

-==-

Tuesday December 10, 1974

Edward VIII abdicated 1936. Long day at the YP but enjoyable. As I came back from lunch Janice 'the Formidable' Beaumont, was on the phone from hospital announcing that she'd been delivered of a daughter yesterday morning. Sarah was thrilled to bits, but I can't raise any excitement at Mrs Beaumont's bundle of news. Janice was a bitch, and I can't say I miss her at all.

Meet Lynn and Alison on the bus and we are caught up in a hail storm on Hawksworth Lane. Have liver for tea and then do absolutely nothing for the remainder of the evening.

Whilst shopping in Leeds today I saw a good book entitled 'The Royal House of Windsor'. I'd love to start a book collection. In fact I'm more than tempted. I also got a new diary for next year. Sarah says she's kept a diary since the age of 9. You all know now that I write very little of interest here, but I keep a constant and cronological flow at least. As I've said before I'm no Samuel Pepys.

The YP and I had something in common this morning. An article quoted King Farouk from 1951 saying it was gradually becoming a true fact. I quoted King Farouk yesterday on the same subject of declining and toppling thrones. Clever boy, Michael. Clever boy.

-==-

Monday December 9, 1974

The morning papers carry a sad story indeed. It seems that the Greeks don't want King Constantine and Queen Anne-Marie back in their rightful place on the Hellenic throne. A referendum held last week shows that the majority are in favour of a republic. Obnoxious it all is. A sad day for monarchists everywhere. The crown in Ethiopia is even more insecure. The imperial family there are being executed right, left and centre, and fears for the life of the tiny emperor, Haile Selassie, are growing. Two thrones collapsing in one year is too sad. The late King Farouk of Egypt told Lord Boyd-Orr in 1951 that 'soon their will be only five kings left. The Kings of Hearts, Diamonds, Clubs and Spades, and the King of England.'

YP all day. Kathleen is better tempered after the weekend. Don't do pictures at all, and just do cuttings. Much more pleasant.

Denny rings at 4.30 to say she is finishing with Adrian tonight because he is being cowardly about the dinner dance.

The Sunday Express yesterday said that the Prince of Wales continues to visit Lady Jane Wellesley at her Fulham home - disguised beneath a false black beard.

-==-

Sunday December 8, 1974

2nd in Advent. A quick day, and it seemed to grow dark very suddenly before the afternoon had even begun. See a rotten 1939 film on TV and listen to the usual radio programmes in the bath.

John goes out with the Denby Twins in their van and ends up at the Cow & Calf until 12. I get a 55 bus which brings back memories of my love affair with Miss Bottomley, and go to the Emmotts where I'm joined by Denny and Marita. Marita has changed her image again - and is no longer endowed with a head of curls. Nevertheless she looks quite stunning. We sit about looking bored and talking about the events of 1974. Marita says I don't look my usual self, and says I need a good romance to cheer me up. That's all I need! Denny says that Adrian is a hypercondriac and a failure. They're going for a meal tomorrow but she says I can take his place because he's in London and 'with a bit of luck won't be back in time', unquote. She also amused me by saying he is a surveyor, but doesn't think 'he could survey a rice pudding'. Back to Marita's where I inspect my landscape framed on her bedroom wall. A great honour for me indeed. Home and about 11 and have supper with Auntie Hilda and Uncle Tony, Jill and Diane. Jill is becoming_______.

-==-