The Week That Was – 9th September 1979

Record of the week: Charlie Daniels – The Devil Went Down To Georgia
Highest entry: Ruts – Something That I Said

23rd Jun 2022 – Never heard the Charlie Daniels tune on the radio much beyond this time but it’s a classic story-type song that holds up well I think. The Ruts as the highest entry? These were the days.

9th September 1979
Er-m
Dunno
2p 2p

23rd Jun 2022 – Keeping a diary was getting more taxing….

10th September 1979
New member to group
2p

11th September 1979
Chuck a member from the group
2p

23rd Jun 2022 – Now were the formative thoughts of being in a band. I’m guessing this would have been me, Graeme and Chris, and as the Sex Pistols were a four-piece we must be too. I don’t think we (and by we, I mostly mean ‘I’) ever got to a four-piece and these entries were probably about Chris as I couldn’t decide if he was punk enough to be part of the group. His still going to church with his parents on Sunday didn’t quite gel with my ideas of a punk identity! But ultimately it looks like there was no one else to be a part of it.

At some point, I named our band Punks Unlimited, borrowing words from the punk cultural zeitgeist. My mum’s boss Fred had brought some notepad/scrapbooks for me when they visited and I set about making designs for album and single covers, coming up with song titles etc. All of this without any of us owning an instrument or writing any songs and lyrics. But this is where it started.

I threw those books out a long time ago but I can still remember them well. They were rubbish, typical 11-year-old attempts at replicating a minimal understanding of the world that was interesting.

A fad during this time was small cards of stickers (similar to the main photo here) that took off quickly and spread like wildfire throughout the school and I got right into it, begging my mum to get as many as possible from the local shop. It became a fun game to put stickers around the school in odd places without getting caught by the teachers. After a while of this, the headmasters got jack of having to clean them all up all the time and banned them. My first fight with authority!

Tied in with this time was my first and only experience with student death. Phillip Brown was a sickly kid with albino hair and a slow brain. I never got friendly with him really but had nothing against him. He went MIA for a few days and eventually we were told he had died. I don’t recall being shocked or upset as such, perhaps just a weird feeling of never seeing someone again. The school installed a bench outside the main entrance with a plaque of remembrance for him. Soon, it was covered in our little stickers.

12th September 1979
Got him back
My mum’s a bloody barstard
2p 2p

23rd Jun 2022 – Not sure exactly what prompted this entry but I was starting to get frustrated with my life and what I must have considered injustices committed against me. It would get worse – for both of us.

13th September 1979
1. Cliffie
2. Cars
3. BA Robertson
4. ELO
5. Crusaders
6. Roxy Music
7. Bellamy Brothers
8. Vanwarmer
9. Dollar
10. Money
2p

14th September 1979
Nothing
2p 290p*

15th September 1979
Brighton 2-0 Ipswich
2p 288p*

The Week That Was – 2nd September 1979

Chris’ house on the left and the entrance to the ‘mansion’ opposite.

Record of the week: Secret Affair – Time For Action
Chart entries: 40 – Secret Affair – Time For Action, 38 – Billy Connolly – In The Brownies, 34 – Commodores – Sail On, 32 – Nick Lowe – Cruel To Be Kind

22 Jun 2022 – The Secret Affair song is a great mod tune though it wouldn’t be long until my allegiance to punk had to see me dislike anything that didn’t fit into a strict definition. Billy Connolly making fun of the Village People, there’s the cool disco-funk of the Commodores and the very 70s pop tune from Nick Lowe. Music was good.

2nd September 1979
Part 12 of the Dickies saga
De-ciphered some words from Dickies album
2p 209p*

22 Jun 2022 – The Dickies songs were so fast, the vocals blurred and spasmodic but I really wanted to sing along. I couldn’t wait any longer for the unlikely event of Smash Hits printing lyrics for Dickies album tracks. I’m not sure they ever printed the lyrics for Banana Splits but everyone already knew the words to that from watching the TV show. Having no comprehension of record collecting yet I wrote the lyrics in some spare space on the inner sleeve and wrote on the cover too. I completely ruined the Boomtown Rats ‘Tonic For The Troops’ doing that too. That album had a lyric sheet but there were so many mistakes and missing lyrics that I attempted to fastidiously fix.

3rd September 1979
Oh no
(arrow pointing to tomorrow)
2p 207p+135p = 342p*

22 Jun 2022 – I wonder what I bought this time? I’m guessing it was some 7″ singles or Matchbox cars.

4th September 1979
School
S’arite in fird yer
2p

22 Jun 2022 – Middle school was split into two sections somewhat. Years 1 and 2 did things together as did years 3 and 4. In Year Two you had some sway over the kids in Year One. Moving to Year Three didn’t really give you sway over the two years below, instead, you became the target of attention from the Year Four kids. It was during this year that a bunch of them started calling me Sid as that was the only punk icon name they knew. One tomboy girl, in particular, took umbrage at me being a punk and would punch and kick me at any opportunity.

The main point of contention for me was in the school football team. I was the top player when I was in Year Two but now I struggled to make it into the team with the Year Four kids. I did end up playing a few games though and felt like I got a little respect from some of them.

5th September 1979
Forgot about the charts yesterday so I got it today
2p 338p*

6th September 1979
1. Cliff Richard
2. BA Robertson
3. Gary Numan – Cars
4. Roxy Music
5. Money
6. Specials
7. Street Life
8. Rats
9. Vanwarmer
10. EWF
2p 2p

7th September 1979
Going to I Eye and staying the night and coming back Sat 7.00pm
2p 2p

22 Jun 2022 – The secret code of I Eyes is lost to time though I think it may have been Chris Foote. He, Graeme and I were the only three kids interested in the Sex Pistols and punk at the time. I do recall staying at his place once or twice until I was deemed too unacceptable as a dirty punk by his parents and later him too.

He lived on the corner of one of the hills that led down into Wimborne. We could climb his fence and still atop and shoot peas through a peashooter at cars as they drove by. This was great fun until some guy spotted us and got out and came in and told us off in front of Chris’ parents. Maybe that’s what got me into trouble with them.

Also, opposite his place was a big hidden mansion, or so it seemed to us. Their drive had a little bridge and a dry moat-like area that was hidden from pedestrians and the owners. We adventured through the hedge and down into the ditch in search of treasure, perhaps hoping for a porno mag or…who knows. What we did find on one occasion, under the bridge, was a huge human shit, which was both fascinatingly huge and seriously disgusting. Who was responsible for this!? What kind of massive butthole evacuated it?

The other road of the roundabout outside Chris’ place led down to the chippie which I most remember for having a cigarette vending machine standing by itself on the pavement, like a mailbox. You could buy single cigarettes for tuppence or five pence but we never had any money. We did see if we could get our little hands inside though, which worked occasionally. Of course, the fragility of the device meant that some folks would come along and just bash it until the glass broke and we would take advantage of that if we ever found it in that state.

It was also walking up this hill that one time I actually did find a porno magazine in the bushes which I had to hide in my pants and smuggle home.

8th September 1979
Great at I Eyes
Ipswich 1-0 Bristol
2p

223 Jun 2022 – It would have been around this time that my mum lent me a cheap camera to finish off a roll of film which saw me pretending to take a shit, squatting over some dog poo on the pavement and hungrily pretending to grab at cigarettes on a billboard.

The Week That Was – 26th August 1979

Record of the week: ELO – Don’t Bring Me Down
Highest entry: Buzzcocks – Spiral Scratch

27th Sept 2021 – Double checking this, I don’t believe the Buzzcocks were the highest entry but I was developing early signs of favouritism and believing what I wanted to believe.

13th June 2022 – It’s also odd now to me as Spiral Scratch originally came out in 1977. I see it was re-issued in 1979, perhaps because so few of the original were pressed at the time but that was quite an achievement to chart on the repress.

26th August 1979
Pistols Split
2p 2p 149p*

13th June 2022 – In hindsight, the Pistols had obviously split long before now but perhaps this was the end of the ongoing Great Rock N Roll Swindle and the flogging of the dead horse. The timing seems to coincide roughly with the reformation of the Professionals so this kinda makes sense.

27th August 1979
Gonna watch My Way Manhattan Murdered
2p 147p*

13th June 2022 – Can’t find anything about this now but guess it was some TV doco about Sid and Nancy. I was going all-in with this punk rock thing though still not really understanding what it was.

28th August 1979
Went to Beaulieu
Saw an Aston Martin Lagonda
2p 221p*

13th June 2022 – Not quite finished with the childhood fascination with cars, Beaulieu was always an exciting visit for a pre-teen boy. Though, funnily enough, I mostly remember the monorail and the palace house as well as the surrounding forest and gardens.

29th August 1979
Gotta old Sex Pistols posters
League Cup 1st Leg 2nd Rd
Ipswich 0-1 Coventry
2p 2p 219p*

30th August 1979
1. Cliff Richard
2. Boomtown Rats
3. B.A. Robertson
4. Roxy Music
5. EWF
6. Specials AKA
7. Darts
8. Flying Lizards
9. Ian Dury
10. Gibson Bros
2p 2p 215p*

31st August 1979
Notta lot
2p 213p*

1st September 1979
Ipswich 2-1 Stoke
2p 211p*

The Week That Was – 19th August 1979

Record of the week: Cutouts – D.I.Y.
Highest entry: Crusaders – Street Life

6th Jun 2022 – The Cutouts D.I.Y. is a great quirky tune, of its time, much in line with early Devo, XTC and Cardiac Arrest (pre-Cardiacs) though not quite as manic. There’s a tune on the guitar practice app I use (Yousician) that reminds me of this too. It’s fun to play and takes me exactly to 1979! Street Life has some cool funky elements but production values were already changing in this pop genre to what would become very familiar in the 80s.

19th August 1979
Nothing memorable today.
Saturday bought a book of cars and a special 12″ limited edition of Hersham Boys
2p 167p*

20th August 1979
Carnival in Aldeburgh
Bought some things
2p 165p*

6th Jun 2022 – No recollection of Aldeburgh so I had a look on the map. I believe Eileen and Dick lived in Saxmundham, at least, that name rings a bell and Aldeburgh is not far away. Finding photos of Aldeburgh too, upsets me a little that I don’t remember anything about it.

What I love about doing this investigation is seeing all these Olde English names again on the map. After watching The Last Kingdom over the last 12 months it’s interesting to see how names have changed or been influenced over time.

I’m a little bit more interested in English history than I was in school where things like the cavaliers and roundheads got boring very quickly. None of that stuff was given any context (that I remember anyway). Being a teacher now makes me think about the tough job my teachers had with me and my classes. How to make a class interesting for everyone?

21st August 1979
TBX B MBNCPSHIJOJ VSSBDP T
SAW A LAMBORGHINI URRACO S
2p 163p*

6th Jun 2022 – Perhaps inspired by old war movies I started working on secret codes, though this one is pretty straightforward – no need for a turing machine.

22nd August 1979
Arsenal 0-2 Ipswich
TBX B NBUSB TJNDB CBHIFSSB
SAW A MATRA SIMCA BAGHEERA
2p 161p*

23rd August 1979
1. Cliffie
2. Boomtown Rats
3. BA Robertson
4. Ian Dury
5. EWF
6. Darts
7. Sham 69
8. Specials
9. Abba
10. ELO
2p 159p*

24th August 1979
Come back from East Anglia
My room’s fucking bloody mess because of a puff
2p 157p*

6th Jun 2022 – Whilst we were away, Lorna and Jim would have stayed over and my cousin Elise would stay in my room. On this occasion I had pinned string across various parts of the room to make it difficult to move around. Of course she would’ve immediately taken it all down and thought I was an idiot!

But I was annoyed that she had done this and resorted to the common insult of calling her a puff, without knowing what it even meant. Probably we all called each other that at school.

I wonder if anyone that I went to school with was gay or not? There’s definitely no one that stands out. Being gay was still often derided then and coming out was a real big deal. Here, in the classrooms of Thailand, it is very obvious who is gay and no one cares. There may still be some in the closet but being an extravagant extrovert gay is teenager is very common here. Girls too, have no problem, talking about liking girls. It is refreshin

25th August 1979
Wolves 3-0 Ipswich
2p 2p 153p*

The Week That Was – 12th August 1979

Record of the week: The Dickies – Walk Like An Egg
Highest entry: Angelic Upstarts – Teenage Warning

25th May 2022 – My ‘record’ of the week seems to be just different songs from the Dickies album. Well, it is that good, I suppose. Angelic Upstarts – fantastic youth anthem, Teenage Warning – classic. I wonder if I could play it on guitar? Definitely not the guitar solo though!

12th August 1979
Might be watching the match on Saturday vs Forest

25th May 2022 – I think this would be the first of two times I saw Ipswich play. The other was in Bristol, vs Bristol City, though I’ve no idea what mum and I were doing in Bristol. Maybe just visiting Bath?

13th August 1979
I’m writing this on Thursday and I can’t remember what happened today
2p 93p* 86p* 179p*

14th August 1979
Went to Sharon and Ken’s
2p

25th May 2022 – Before moving to Dorset to live with my grandparents, we lived in Devon. I also don’t really know why we moved to Devon from Cumbria, though I would guess it would have something to do with my mum’s then-boyfriend committing himself to more than one girlfriend at a time. I never really saw my mum with another guy after that. Anyway, in Devon, my cousins, Sharon and Ken lived about 3 miles away from where we did. After leaving Devon at the end of 1976, Sharon and Ken moved too, also to Dorset, about 10 miles away from us. I used to enjoy Ken’s sense of humour and playfulness. Also by this time, they must have had a least one of their two children, Mungo followed by Kim. I was deemed to be close enough in age to play with them and get out of my mum’s hair for a while.

15th August 1979
Came back from Sharon and Ken’s
2p

16th August 1979
1. Boomtown Rats
2. Cliff Richard
3. Ian Dury
4. EWF
5. Abba
6. Hersham Boys
7. Police
8. Dooleys
9. Darts
10. ELO
2p 173p*

17th August 1979
Go on holiday to East Anglia
Not Dead
2p 171p*

25th May 2022 – Hehe – I’m not sure why I wrote ‘not dead’. I suppose it was a long drive. I was excited to be in the county of my team and to be going to see them play the following day. Here, we stayed with my Auntie Eileen and Uncle Dick, after them having stayed with us last week or so.

18th August 1979
Up until now because I’ll be giving Ipswich’s scores
Ipswich 0-1 Forest – Boo
Watched the match live.
2p 169p*

25th May 2022 – In East Anglia I remember being allowed to drink Cinzano, which was Eileen and Dick’s favourite tipple.

I also managed to convince my mum to buy the Sham 69 Hersham Boys 12″ which no one else was very impressed with but didn’t stop me from playing it. Especially showing these ‘old people’ how angry and mature I was by enjoying the beeped out swearing on the live tunes.

We also went for a walk across a heath with lots of brackens and their old dog trailing behind. But the football match that I was so excited about I don’t remember a thing, except perhaps, being disappointed at losing.

The other time I saw them, they lost too and that trend continued many a time I went to watch the Swans play in Sydney too. There was a very big difference in the atmosphere at matches between English football and Aussie Rules.

In England there was always a tension, a palpable possibility of violence, not even my mum could protect me from. In Australia, everyone is there to have a good time and enjoy watching the sport. Overzealous fans tend to be frowned upon. There is also no separation for supporters because it just isn’t necessary. Fans would poke gentle fun at each other, that was as violent as I ever saw at a game. Even opposition fans could make me laugh when one time, Collingwood scored their first point and shouted ‘You’re losing, Sydney!’

The Week That Was – 5th August 1979

Record of the week: The Dickies – Eve of Destruction, Curb Job, Waterslide
Highest entry: Ian Dury – Reasons to be Cheerful (Part 3)

20th May 2022 – Ian Dury was a loveable character, with his limping walk and absurdist humour. Music icons seemed to have more depth than the manufactured stars of these times. I know I’m hardly in the target demographic for modern music but when I was young music was everywhere and if you didn’t like it you still knew who everyone was. Marc Bolan, David Bowie, Alvin Stardust, Suzi Quatro, Phil Lynott, John Lydon, Pete Townsend, Mick Jagger and on and on. With the diversity of entertainment on offer these days, people are famous within their niches and not on such a wide spectrum.

Do I sound like I’m desperately trying to avoid sounding like the old man saying ‘it was better in my day’!? I think most people appreciate the times of their teens and twenties, whatever decades they were across. I’m glad I’m not ‘growing up’ through these times.

5th August 1979
Part 11
Yesterday and today, I haven’t played it.
2p

20th May 2022 – It’s possible my record collection was now growing to a point where I couldn’t listen to everything in a single day. Starting to develop my fascination with finding the next new interesting thing.

6th August 1979
Eileen and Dick came.
Great Polo (car)
2p

Eileen was my granny’s sister I think, making her my great aunt. I remember liking her and Dick(her husband) though in my mind they were just old people, like my granny. They were alive when Queen Victoria was alive! That made them Victorian! Despite some hangovers from empire days, my grandparents were quite liberal, I think.

Modern cars such as the Polo were always interesting as they were way out of our price league. At this time we still had an Austin Morris (I think it was the A30 by checking on old pictures). This had indicators on arms that popped out of the struts between the front and back windows. This car made me feel poor as modern cars had ‘proper’ indicators near the front and rear lights. Now, I think it’s cool and interesting but then I didn’t want people to think we were poor.

7th August 1979
Matthew came down
2p

8th August 1979
Eileen and Dick go.
Going out with Fred and Ann to Bridport
2p

20th May 2022 – Fred was my mum’s employer for knitting guernseys. He and Ann live in the Channel Islands, on Jersey. Now, they turned up in an Aston Martin and he had a habit of upgrading it every year. I was quite jealous of them, not really having any real understanding of how the world works yet.

9th August 1979
1. Boomtown Rats
2. Cliff Richard
3. Abba
4. Police
5. The Dooleys
6. Ian Dury
7. Hersham Boys
8. The Diary of H.W.
9. Girls Talk
10. Patrick Hernandez
Go to Tiv wif Matthew. We saw Superman.
2p

20th May 2022 – Being able to go to the movies was something very special in those days and Superman was all that kids were talking about. Hurray for the heroes. Finding a picture of the Tiv I’m reminded of the shop next door that sold knives and other farm tools such as rook scarers. This is where I nervously bought my first knife, a lock knife, as the flick knife I asked for I was told was actually illegal! I lied that I needed it for fishing.

10th August 1979
Going to ge’ ‘Ersham Boys and mebbe Reasons t’ Be Cheerful Part 3
2p 95p*

20th May 2022 – When I could still approximate an English accent. Now I’m very accentless, much to Amy’s disappointment.

11th August 1979
Still no news on Ray Wilkins X
He says he’s not going to join Ipswich

The Week That Was – 29th July 1979

Record of the week: The Dickies – Poodle Party, Paranoid, Rondo (The Midget’s Revenge)
Highest entry: Sham 69 – Hersham Boys
Entries: The Boss, Telex, The Bitch, Showaddywaddy, Spyro Gyra, EWF

19th May 2022 – Days when Sham 69 were the highest entry in the charts! In the big scheme of things, punk was a flash in the pan. I’m a flash in the pan. Humanity is a flash in the pan! I was all about the Dickies this week.

29th July 1979
From Tues
Last week was great
Part 7 of the Dickies saga
Haven’t stopped playing the album.
2p

30th July 1979
Part 8
As you can see my records of this week and next are off the album.
2p 2p

31st July 1979
‘ad me ‘air dun
Part 9
Got the single Paranoid. The B-side is I’m OK You’re OK.
2p

19th May 2022 – This new Dickies song was a little bit of a let-down when compared with the album but it was still great. I wonder what madness I tried to get the hairdresser to perform this time?

1st August 1979
1 – Going to get the Dickies LP The Incredible Shrinking Dickies – False
2 – I’ll get it on 27th July – False
3 – 20th July
2p

19th May 2022 – When plans come early.

2nd August 1979
1. Boomtown Rats
2. Police
3. Dooleys
4. Dave Edmunds
5. Abba
6. Janet Kay
7. Tubeway Army
8. Knack
9. Supertramp
10. Sparks
2p
Going to Johnny’s.

19th May 2022 – Probably stayed at Graeme’s for a night or two. At the back of his house, which was above the pub, there was a camping and caravanning area, with shower and toilet blocks. Graeme had an air rifle and we took it out around the woods to ‘play’ with as the sun was coming down. We got back to the campsite not yet satisfied with shooting at things. I think we’d scared a few birds by this point. In the dark, Graeme said that there was a garbage bin next to the toilet block and we should shoot across the car park and see if we could hit it. So, with no thought or care for anyone else, that’s what we did. And we did hit the garbage can! And no one was hurt.

Little did I know that in my future I would come very close to being killed with an air rifle!

3rd August 1979
Part 10 of the Dickies saga
I’m going to try and play the album every day until the Eve of Destruction. Get it?
2p

4th August 1979
Hope Ipswich sign Ray Wilkins. That’s for 930,000 pounds.
2p 10p 107p*

19th May 2022 – I had to look up Ray Wilkins. Not sure why I was that excited about this possibility but I obviously rated him at the time. He ended up at Manchester United and so I soon forgot about him!

The Week That Was – 22nd July 1979

Record of the week: I Don’t Like Mondays
Highest entry: Sparks – Beat The Clock – 21

17th May 2022 – Well, there you go. After writing about my dislike for this song ‘I Don’t Like Mondays’ now, I liked it enough to make it my favourite record then.

22nd July 1979
When I did my leg in yesterday hurdling…well, nothing happened to any other part of my body until today, I can’t move my head
10p 2p 54p*

17th May 2022 – I recall a time I woke up and couldn’t move my head, it was stuck to one side and trying to move it was intensely painful. I’m not sure if I worked it out at the time or much later but I’m guessing it was probably related to sleeping on my front, something which I may have mentioned elsewhere, which was because I heard that Jimi Hendrix had died choking on his own vomit when laying on his back. I sure didn’t want that to happen to me.

As I write this and think about it, I don’t think that was the real reason. It was just a bad habit I had picked up as a kid, I’m sure. Sometimes, before falling asleep I would pull the sheet and blanket up over me and pretend my bed was a spaceship with the controls down the edge of the mattress. I probably played this until I fell asleep laying on my front. Star Trek repeats on TV would’ve been an influence. Maybe Dr Who as well.

23rd July 1979
I made a Star Special featuring Sid Vicious
2p 17 1/2p* 40p*

17th May 2022 – I’m guessing a Star Special was some kind of feature in a magazine like Smash Hits or something like that. As they would never do one on Sid, I did it myself. The genesis of my DIY journey?

24th July 1979
Why ain’t Sex Pistols No. 1?
2p 55 1/2p*

25th July 1979
Made an ??? by Steve Jones. Great
Must get Boomtown Rats I Don’t Like Mondays
2p 2p 51 1/2p*

17th May 2022 – My bad handwriting. I’m dreading looking at some future diaries for their inexplicable, illegible scrawl, some blotched by humidity or damp.

26th July 1979
1. I Don’t Like Mondays
2. Tubeway Army
3. Silly Games
4. Dave Edmunds
5. Dooleys
6. Knack
7. Chic
8. Sex Pistols
9. Lady Lynda
10. Supertramp
2p 47 1/2p*

27th July 1979
Part 6 of the Dickies saga
I GOT IT.
Look at 25th July. Well. I did.
Part 7
2p 45p*

17th May 2022 – The Dickies first album had a huge effect on me. They played fast and with great melody. It was fun and frantic and featured great songwriting on their originals and also made the covers they did their own, fitting seamlessly into this set of songs. I didn’t even know ‘She’ was a cover until much much later. The picture on the album cover was also so cool. These were days of pouring over every minute detail to fill in the blanks. Cool crazy haircuts and clothes. Without a lyric sheet, I would try to discern the furiously fast words as best I could so I could also sing along. Were these people even real?

28th July 1979
Dunno
First Dunno since 27th June
4.4 weeks. 32 days.
2p

The Week That Was – 15th July 1979

Record of the week: Sham 69 – Hersham Boys, The Members – End of Term
Highest entry: Boomtown Rats – I Don’t Like Mondays – 15

17th May 2022 – Had to go back and check out the Members tune again. A great bopping number with particularly relevant lyrics for a schoolkid. Very much of its time and not as classic as some of their other singles, I love the sound of it though. I guess I do have a nostalgia through music. Hersham Boys was a classic at the time though hasn’t really stood the test of time for me. I had the 12″ single with the extended mix and live tracks (with the swear words beeped out – which made me feel a little naughty).

As for the Boomtown Rats, I kinda like this song but when it got to number one and could be heard everywhere all the time I soon got sick of it. Gone was the upbeat tempo, great songwriting and dizziness of their first two albums and earlier singles. The end of my love affair with the Rats.

15th July 1979
Finished poster to go up on me wall
2p
28p^

17th May 2022 – Like most teenagers and pre-teens I was ripping out pictures from magazines and putting them up on the wall of my bedroom and this developed into making my own which often featured titillating images such as page 3 topless pictures with Princess Diana’s head on top. Decorating my room soon became graffiti over the following 5 years.

16th July 1979
Hopefully I’m going to get the Dickies LP this week
4
2p 30p^

17th May 2022 – I was pumped up waiting for this.

17th July 1979
Didn’t get it today
Hope Sex Pistols are number one
2p 2p 32p^

18th July 1979
Highest entry – Boomtown Rats – I Don’t Like Mondays – 15
It’s great

17th May 2022 – Finding out this was about a school shooting was weird. It seemed unthinkable and didn’t really seem to be a common thing back then, at least not reported on the shores of Blighty. On the one hand, I found it fantastic that someone was so pissed off with school that they went there and killed people! On the other hand, what had anyone really done to deserve that fate?

With the situation becoming more common in the US over time I still can’t believe the situation there. It makes me feel like the place is dangerous, just in general.

19th July 1979
1. Tubeway Army
2. Janet Kay
3. Sex Pistols
4. Dave Edmunds
5. Chic
6. Beach Boys
7. Gerry Rafferty
8. Amii Stewart
9. Squeeze
10. Dooleys
38p^

20th July 1979
Break up for holidays
Skill
I didn’t get Dickies this week
Part 5
Next
40p^

17th May 2022 – Skill! I had forgotten we used to say that. Ace! too. Every kid enjoys the end of term, right!?

21st July 1979
I don’t think there’s been any big move to do with Ipswich
Got 2 cars. Notes
42p^

17th May 2022 – Transfer news wasn’t such a big deal back at this time, or so I imagined. Nowadays, it’s like every little piece of everyone’s business is dissected and analysed to death. This isn’t necessarily a good thing. Really just gossip and out of one’s control.

The Week That Was – 8th July 1979

Record of the week: Generation X – Friday’s Angel
Highest entry: The Knack – My Sharona – 24

14th May 2022 – My Sharona is still in the cultural zeitgeist, though maybe only for another generation. Friday’s Angel I don’t even recall myself. Let me check it out again. Seeing the cover, I may have even owned this 7″ at some point. Looks familiar. A re-listen is not winning me over these days.

8th July 1979
Not meant for today but the Sex Pistols are great.
2p 12p^

14th May 2022 – Not meant for today? What does that even mean, 11-year-old me? Perhaps just filling up diary space when having no recollection of what I actually did on that day. I wish I could go back and tell myself to write down as much as possible, to tell Hayden to do the same. Tell your kids to keep a diary, even better, a journal. No need to get all Kerouac about it but your future self will be grateful to you.

9th July 1979
Had chalkie today
Great stuff
Chalkie = Hard and White = Arden White
2p 14p^

14th May 2022 – Well, I’ve searched but Arden White remains a mystery. Some kind of candy, chocolate or beverage, maybe? Already enjoying playing with language. It is something that I still admire as part of my Englishness. Not to say that language games don’t exist in other languages or that English is better, just that I enjoy the learning, practising and knowing of it.

10th July 1979
Graeme brought a Rubber Johnny to school and I’ve got the instructions
2p 16p^

14th May 2022 – Damn, this would’ve been a playground coup and kids would’ve gathered around to see this forbidden item. I was obviously proud to be the owner of the instructions! Even with them, I wouldn’t have known what to do with the thing! I feel sure Graeme would’ve given it a go though.

11th July 1979
called the
2p

14th May 2022 – As if my writing wasn’t hard enough to read already, I obviously wanted this piece partially obscured

12th July 1979
1. Tubeway Army – Are Friends Electric?
2. Janet Kay – Silly Games
3. Sex Pistols – C’mon Everybody
4. Squeeze – Up The Junction
5. Amii Stewart – Light My Fire
6. Gerry Rafferty – Night Owl
7. Ruts – Babylon’s Burning
2p 2p 20p^

14th May 2022 – Extended to a top 7 so that I could include the Ruts. It’s amazing to remember a time when a song like this was in the charts.

13th July 1979
Gra Johnny’s number is 0425 42800
24p^

14th May 2022 – In the punk tradition Graeme and I changed our names though I forget what mine was. So Graeme was Johnny, implying that he was the Johnny Rotten of us two potential punks. I don’t believe I ever went by the name of Sid but it wouldn’t be long before that was the name older kids called me to make fun of me. And by this time I was the only punk in the school.

14th July 1979
No news to write about Ipswich this week
26p ^

14th May 2022 – That’s how to write about Ipswich every week, even when there was nothing to write. I could’ve been a journalist, I tells ya!