Mess – 3rd August 1983

Some people say you look a mess
But I don’t care how you dress
I think those people dress pretty bad
They look pretty silly in last year’s fad
Mess mess mess
Dress dress dress
Fad fad fad fad – had!

27th Apr 2023 – It never occurred to younger me that the 2nd and 3rd lines contradict each other but the meaning was more along the lines that I don’t care how you dress, that it is neither good nor bad.
At this time the word ‘trendy’ was becoming popular and kids started dressing smart to impress girls and (when older) go clubbing etc. I found it very dull and uninspiring.
The way I dressed was messy and in a generic punk style. In another way, I did care how people dressed because it was very easy to identify people to avoid and people who would be allies. Our tribes were easily identifiable in these times before all cultural fashions became appropriated (except perhaps for the metalheads). Meeting people wearing shirts or badges with bands from our subculture gave comfort and solidarity. We knew we were on the same side.

Smell – 1st August 1983

Wet armpits produce a smelly pong
Armed with Brut 33 to rid the wrong
So I can go onstage to sing another song
But does my Brut 33 last that long?

27th Apr – 2023 – Brut 33 was the cheap deodorant favoured by us poor smelly teenagers but only once we actually realised that we smelt pretty bad a lot of the time. That’s what happened with only bathing once a week. We had school uniforms too and I don’t remember having a change during the week.
In this poem, I am also already imagining myself as a rock star. I’d need to up my game on the word front though!