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Monday January 1, 1979

Bank Holiday in England, Ireland, Scotland and Wales


Well, here we go again. We arrived (that is, Sue, Pete, Lynn, Dave and me) at Pine Tops at a little after midnight. We let in the New Year. I kissed mother and gave her a lump of coal (why?).

We had a few drinks and chatted with various people on the phone. Dave G phoned from Stockport hospital. We ate a good deal and waited for John and Maria but they never materialised.

I walked down the lane in driving snow to Molly & Jim's. It was my first meeting with Molly since before July '77. Drank and ate there. Eventually, at about 5am, only Jimmy (Jun) and I remained. Karim _____________. Listened to weird music and had a lengthy conversation about drugs.

Home in bright sun and crisp snow at 8am. Slept until 2. Had a frosty reception from Mum and Dad _________.

Watched the telly. A Tommy Steele film of all things. Bed with square eyes at 1am.



Sunday December 31, 1978

1st Sunday after Christmas

Miserable and far from festive. Out of bed at lunchtime and went with Susan & Peter to the White Cross. The place was dead. Like a mausoleum in some vast Palladian mansion.

Back to Pete's at 2 for a couple of rums and hot soup {yes, what a combination}. Sue equipped herself with a school skirt and blouse, Peter dressed in a cowboy costume for tonight's 'orgy' at the Shoulder (of Mutton).

I pinched a tub of Jim's Brylcreem for my stunning masque.

Back at home Mum looks very pale and Dad not much better. Sore throats and blocked nasal cavities, &c. We had dinner and a few drinks in an attempt to capture some spirit.

Lynn and David joined us but the sombre atmosphere prevailed. I cannot really put my finger on the fault for this gloom, but something was amiss.

At 8pm - clad in our ridiculous garb we went to the Shoulder. No sign of John & Maria until 10:30 and they didn't come in fancy dress. Maria says John refused to come out in his traditional Scottish gear.

MM, Marita, Denise and Chris R came in for a couple of drinks.  ________. Lynn ignored them and scowled at me when I asked them to come and sit in our little corner. Denise kissed me when they left at about 11.

At about 11:45 with Lynn, Dave, Sue and Peter to Pine Tops to let in the New Year. John and Maria went on to Molly's for the event.

Bye bye, diary. For everything after midnight see the new volume.


Saturday December 30, 1978

Sun rises 08:06 Sun sets 16:00

Snow and gales. Slept until lunchtime and then shovelled snow from the drive - it was my good deed of the day.God knows why because the snow didn't cease whilst I was doing it and my labours were buried without a trace in a matter of minutes. It pleased my ailing, demented Papa, who sat reflecting on the days when he was capable of holding a spade, from a chair in the window.

I phoned Sarah once and she phoned me twice. Jacq has phoned her asking if she can accompany the girls to the Regent tonight. ___________.

John came round at 9:30 to watch the TV and drink lemonade. Yes, lemonade. Peter and I went into Guiseley to the Chinese take-away and to buy more lemonade.

Watched a Jack Lemmon film and went to bed at 1:35am.


Friday December 29, 1978

New Moon 19:36

Margaret made a cup of milky tea and I was almost sick over Fieldhead Road. Snow and ice. Susan and Peter brought me home at 11:30am. I collapsed into bed.

Mum woke me at 4:30 for a curry. I then laid in a chair and stared glumly into the television set. Do you know I haven't been into a pub for a drink of alcohol for almost a week? Am I perhaps cracking up?

Mummy seems to think I am exceptionally quiet but why should I always be acting like a circus act or member of the Royal Shakespeare Company? I just want solitude and quiet. Peter and Susan are in a similar frame of mind.

Dad took to his bed at 8pm saying he had 'flu. Mum doesn't look much better.

On the hosiery counter until Day of Judgement
Poor Uncle Albert died 9 years ago today at Pudsey. I remember crying like a baby whilst doing my paper round. Isn't death a useless, wasteful end? God should perhaps devise a way whereby at the age of 70 everybody goes instead to work on the hosiery counter at British Home Stores, or take up Involuntary Service until the Day of Judgement. Think how beneficial we all would be to the economy? No, on second thoughts, I'd rather just fester away.

When you think about it he (God) has everything worked out, hasn't he?


Thursday December 28, 1978

Holy Innocents

Out to Jim and Margaret's this evening. All the family arrived before 10pm and we supped and made merry until nearly dawn.

Maria and I had the usual Goon~like session and I pushed mounds of cream cake into her face. Blame it on the cocktails. Harvey Wallbangers, &c.

David B was quiet but Lynn was boisterous. Susan and Peter went off to bed at about 5:30 (Mum and Dad had left at about 3am) and I was left with Pamela N and Tchaikovsky's 'Romeo & Juliet' until the milkman made his way to the door through the snow.


Wednesday December 27, 1978

St John, Evangelist

Quiet day. In bed until afternoon and then I lay, like a Roman senator, in the sitting room, until someone decided to feed me.

I finally acquired a batch of medicine from the doctor, and spent most of the day gulping it down.

Sarah phoned at lunchtime and was sweet. We really should get married, or shack up together. I will kick myself when some bastard from the Regent snatches her up and slips a ring on her anaemic, yet beautiful, finger. I only hope she seeks my advice first.

To bed with Evelyn Waugh at a nice late hour. I am reminded of Tony Brotherwood's quip _________.

The name Evelyn always makes me think of a man. Mind you, so does Jocelyn, and Vivian. Am I queer, perhaps?


Tuesday December 26, 1978

Boxing Day Bank Holiday {except Scotland}

Good King Wenceslas: when did he look out?
St Stephen

Slightly better. Merry Christmas.

John, Maria and JPH joined us. I phoned Sarah and told her I'm having it off until after the New Year (HaHa).

Sod the New Year's Honours list. Besides, who cares if Arthur Worsley becomes a CH or whether Dame Vera Lynn gets the George Cross? I don't.

Good King Wenceslas looked out today, didn't he? But  what year? I reckon it must have been in the 1000s.

Forgive the abominable handwriting. It isn't anything to do with booze. Someone has hidden my trusty fountain pen and no end of reckless searching has found it. So, I'm reduced to this scrawl with what is commonly styled a felt~tipped pen.


Monday December 25, 1978

Christmas Day Bank Holiday {Scotland}

Still full of cold. Merry Christmas. JPH nipped my nose and it bled. Eeek. Sad news. John's old work~mate, Terry Mellors, was killed in a road accident on Friday, and John was close to bursting into tears when Dad told him at lunchtime. He just sad clutching one of his Christmas presents, looking very pale.

We ate at 4:30 and then collapsed. John and Maria {who had left for Molly & Jim's at about 4:30} came back at 10pm dressed as Scottish punks ~ John in a MacGregor tartan kilt. They danced to Kenneth McKellar records over a pair of crossed walking sticks in the centre of the sitting room. We all remarked afterwards that John would never have done such a thing just a few years ago. He's never been noted for outrageous behaviour.

Maria was bedecked like a Christmas tree with gaily painted balls hanging from her ears.

The house reeks of eucalyptus (sic)


Sunday December 24, 1978

4th Sunday in Advent.

Christmas Eve. Lynn's first Christmas party (at Lawn Rd) tonight. I am ill and taking a Yuletide recess.

We watched a film show (provided by Marlene and Frank) of Lynn and Dave's wedding. Auntie Mabel wiped her spectacles a few times and people shuffled in their seats.

Santa Claus came at 10. Auntie Mabel exclaimed: "Oh, what a sexy old Santa!" It wasn't the real Santa at all, it was David Greenwood __________________________.


Saturday December 23, 1978

Sun rises 08:05 Sun sets 15:55

Feel ill, so get lost. Out tonight with Christine to the Regent at Chapel Allerton and then to the Queen's in Horsforth, and then to Carol's party. Over 200 piled in. It was quite ludicrous. The combined weight of the revellers caused the ceiling of the sweet shop below to cave in. Boxes of Black Magic and Terry's 1767s were afloat in the water from the burst pipes. Very sad.

I was ill and shouldn't have gone out. CB appreciated my indisposition and sympathised. The creeps in the Regent gave us envious glances ~ I am sure CB caused a sensation because the female population in the Regent generally consists of fat tarts buried beneath four inches of make~up.

CB gave me a book for Christmas. It's by Alan Coren and called "The Lady from Stalingrad Mansions" ~ very inspiring. Home at 1:30am (?).  Pissed up.

John and Maria were merry~making with Mum & Dad. The baby is due on July 7.


Friday December 22, 1978

Moon's last quarter 17:41

Not going to tell you much. Work was over by 1:30 and we went across to Parker's Wine Bar ~ which was ridiculous. So cramped and over crowded. Surely a danger and a fire risk? Tarts abounded. Champagne gushed everywhere at £8 a bottle. Most of the men in the place were dressed like Shirley Bassey ~ I think they were heading off to a fancy dress party.

At about 4 o'clock Carol J took Sarah and I to Ivory Towers {really Ivory Dene, West End Lane, Horsforth}, where we ate beans on toast and drank whisky.
November '63: Jack or Bobby?

Auntie Delia brought me home at 7 and came in to use our phone. She wanted to contact Bill (Collis) ~ the phones at Ivory Towers are out of order.

My throat is on fire. I think my cold is returning. By 8:30 I'm in bed and undergo a hideous night of delirium and sweat. At one point, in my dream, I was about to assassinate Senator Robert Kennedy, but couldn't understand why my calendar said it was November, 1963. I went out on the "grassy knoll" trying to tell people that it was his brother, John, who should be assassinated, not Bobby. Nobody believed me.

Yes, I'm stoned out of my miserable brain.