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Thursday January 18, 1979

Had a good evening out. It was one of those occasions when so many long lost acquaintances decided to all appear at Oakwood Hall at the same time.

Peter N, Chippy and I went to the Shoulder  where we were joined by Dave Wainwright, who came 'just for a quick one'. All a bit lost because of the loss of Gus and Frank. Chippy was friendly, and not the rude, immature brat he can be.

At Oakwood Hall I bumped into Patrice Saunders, and we chatted for ages about the former inmates of Fieldhead Rd school. He's the only guy I ever see these days from my Guiseley Secondary School days, and these encounters are rare.

CB: formation dance team...
Joined by Naomi, Jill, CB (!!) , Philip Birdgarden, &c. We organised quite a good formation dance team, but I spent too much on booze. All worth it though. Christine and I have been estranged since Christmas. We often have these 'cool' sessions where it all goes quiet. She has new friends now, including Doreen.

Home before 2am because Chippy was at the wheel of his new Renault, and when he says he's tired his word is like that of Louis XIV.

Bed after three because I was looking at my old coin collection.


Wednesday January 17, 1979

Deep snow this morning. Got in Jim Rawnsley's car at 8:10 & we didn't get to the YP until after 10. Two bloody hours just to go 10 feeble miles. I do believe I have walked home from the centre of Leeds in a similar length of time.

Little Jennie is improving and becoming more tolerable, but it may be because I've resigned myself to the fact.

I failed to mention that David G returned to Stockport on Monday by the 9:30 coach from Leeds.

At the YP: the NUJ are returning to work on Monday and the prospects are not thrilling. Our card playing afternoons in the cathedral~like atmosphere of what was a busy newsroom are sadly, numbered. Kathleen is aware of our latest craze and Sarah thinks our beloved boss is saving up her accusations until a suitable day of reckoning can be chosen. _________.

Malcolm Barker: rocketed in my estimation.
Malcolm Barker has rocketed in my estimation since the beginning oh hostilities with the NUJ. No longer will I regard him as an ale swilling hyper-thyroid editor full of his own importance. Malcolm is indeed a saint, and I for one am 100 per cent behind him. Three cheers and all that. Indeed, we chatter away now like old pals. He's no longer the terrifying boss of my youth.

Home at 5pm. Snow has given way to pouring rain. Eat moussaka, heavily laden with garlic. Poor Susan complained about the after-effects all night.  One thing's for certain, Count Dracula won't be taking her for his gruesome band this dark evening.

Alison Dixon is coming up on Friday, but it's all a big secret from Lynn & Dave. It will be great to see her again. Mum, who spoke to her today, says she sounded cheerful. Retired to bed at 11:37pm. Early eh?


Tuesday January 16, 1979

Snow goes but we expect more very shortly.

The poor Shah of Iran flew out of Teheran today and the BBC, for one, don't give him a cat in Hell's chance of ever returning. The Shah himself says he's going for a holiday but few people seem to think he will ever set foot in his homeland again. And so, yet another throne has bitten the dust.

The remaining monarchies of the world should form a union. (How about the International Federation of Monarchs, Crowned Heads and Allied Dictators?) When one is in difficulties, like the poor Shah, the others could come out in sympathy and withhold labour until that persecuted monarch is reinstated. Just imagine, hospitals would go unopened, red carpets wouldn't be trodden on, palace balconies would stand empty, &c. The flying pickets could use the Queen's Flight aircraft.

I am very sorry to see that the Shah of Iran has been eliminated. The collapse of any monarchy, no matter how dictatorial, is the worst possible step taken by any nation. I am sure that the stupid, fanatic Iranians will one day regret it.

I've gone and lost the diamond from the ring which Carole bought me at Christmas 1975. It probably went at Lynn's on Saturday or Sunday.

Lynn and Dave came up to Pine Tops tonight. Lynn has had a couple of days off with her 'funny tummy'. She did look pale and ghastly. So did David. I'm sure he works too hard. He phoned Jacq today because she's going to Burley for tea tomorrow. No doubt a Beasley's sherry night will follow.

Peter N came up at 8 and we played cards (all except Dad). Hit the sheets at 1:02am.


Monday January 15, 1979

Will Margaret Hilda (Thatcher) ever become prime minister of these crumbling, desperate islands? I have a quaking, nasty feeling of nausea about the whole subject of the next general election. Do I forsee yet another feeble minority Labour government taking us through to the mid 1980s? Please, Oh please God, spare us this horror!

Another one of those Spencer girls has been spotted in the royal circle. Lady Diana Spencer, 17, is now at Sandringham with her elder sister, Lady Sarah, and both have been out shooting with the Prince of Wales. Lady Diana was born in 1961 and I can't help thinking that our future Queen consort is going to be a child of the 1960s. The Prince of Wales cannot marry someone thirty years old because her child~bearing days (or perhaps years) can be numbered on one hand. So, in the next couple of years a batch of females in their early 20s will have to be taken into consideration. All very exciting, isn't it?

I have decided that Peter Nason's beard is a perfect addition to his face. His features were too elongated, and now you can't see 'em for hair. The facial hair makes him look older too. He's been in a cheerful, almost elated mood recently. What can it be?

Watched TV until the set nearly exploded from the heat. A Charles Bronson film on BBC2, and of course a repeat of a 1972 edition of Monty Python's Flying Circus. Bed after 12 and read 'Confessions of a Private Soldier'. Blimey, anything is better than the Crossman diaries.


Sunday January 14, 1979

2nd after Epiphany. We crawled out of our respective holes at about 10:30am for breakfast after which we played cards on the dining room table until 12:30. Sue howled with laughter at Dave G's hopelessness. At 1pm we had one in the Red Lion again before devouring a lunch of roast beef and Yorkshire pudding

Lynn loves to cook and entertain and she does it very well.

Cards continued throughout the afternoon. Chris Baker and Julie (Harris) arrived. Julie puts an instant smile on my face, but nobody else seems to find her amusing or entertaining. Chris B looks upon me as a lunatic, or eccentric, for some strange reason. They left after an hour or so.

Lynn complained of feeling grotty and took off to bed for a couple of hours, but none of this interrupted the card game. They (the Bakers) finally got rid of us at about 8:30 & we returned home. A good weekend.

Watched the film "Room At the Top" with Dave.


Saturday January 13, 1979

Dave (Glynn) and I had breakfast with Sue. Poor Mum is in bed with an upset stomach & so she didn't surface all day. Pale and ghastly.

Dave and I had a little pub crawl in Guiseley. We had one at the Yorkshire Rose where an OAP told us that his Jack Russell terrier is pregnant. A tart in the bar referred to the landlord as "you big fat twat". Yes, a nice, tasteful atmosphere prevailed. We made our way to the incredibly dull Regent and finally, at 2:45pm, onto the Station Hotel.

Snow and ice underfoot was something of a hazard to begin with but the more we drank the more confident we became negotiating the glassy footpaths like John Currie and Robin Cousins.{I suspect both these gents are close friends of Jeremy Thorpe, MP}.

Tonight: to Burley~in~Wharfedale with Dave, Sue & Pete to see Lynn and Dave B. The Bakers both looked as fit as butcher's dogs - especially Lynn who is pink and 'radiating'. We all piled into the Red Lion following a pantomime on ice in the car park there. Boozed solidly until 11 o'clock and then took fish & chips back to Lawn Road . We laughed at the fact that for the purposes of the kitty Dave and I were classed as a 'couple'.

We drank until about 1:30am & then Susie and Pete staggered off to the spare bedroom for a further instalment of the wildest pre~marital experience since Anthony & Cleopatra.

Dave B collapsed onto the sofa and didn't bat an eyelid until after 3 leaving Dave G, Lynn and I singing along to Nat King Cole's greatest hits. Dave B makes a regular habit of slipping into a convenient coma at every available opportunity. He hops off to bed or collapses into a medium sized heap on the carpet. Good old Dave. He thrust a £10 note into my hot, grasping hand when I said I wanted to buy a pair of shoes on Monday. (I shall, of course, let him have it back next week). But isn't it marvellous of him to 'see me right'? A real brother is David Baker, a real brother.

Lynn finally carried her husband off to bed and Dave G and I slept in the lounge (or sitting room depending on how posh you happen to be). It was 3:30am, I think.