I'm not a grumpy old man, just an out of synch hippy

Friday, 8 March 2013


Me - Living Legend

I am history.

This dawned on me recently, on reading that London’s Geffrye Museum of domestic history now features a 1960s Room. If it’s anything like my boyhood home it’ll be an environmental health hazard, with my mother’s 40 a day Embassy cigarette habit and the noise of me playing Jimi Hendrix LPs at 40 decibels and my dad shouting “Turn that bloody racket down!!”

The V&A museum are displaying David Bowie’s costumes. And a 1970s retro shop has opened in my neighbourhood. I keep popping in hoping they’ll have the Beatles’ second LP which was nicked from my student flat  (if you ever come across it, it has a Kilroy Was Here scribble on the back and 1” ripped out from the cover to act as a butt).

If I am history, I’m not making the most of it. It’s time to capitalise on this. I’m a living resource. I’m going to hire myself out at 60s revival nights, museums, reconstructed 60s streets – anywhere that screams out “This is the way we were then!!”

I’ll sit on a stool outside dressed in a kaftan and buttonhole people as they go in. I’ve already written my script. Here it is:

“Ooooh arrrgh” (This makes no sense but it’s what the punters want) “I remember them days as if it were yesterday. We made our own amusements. We’d sit round the TV watching “Call My Bluff”.  Times were hard but my parents shared tasks: my mum would get up to change the channel and my dad’d kick the set when the picture folded.

I remember when Queen Victoria came to visit…. Hang on, wasn’t it another Queen? My memory  ain’t what it used to be, I’ll need a little refreshment to revive it . Thank you! And if you could stuff a little more into this chillum…..

Where was I? Every Sunday we’d have a little family ritual, sticking on the Co-op Green Shield stamps. After that my mum would dish out the family meal, a great big pan full of Alphabetti Spaghetti. It’s how I learnt how to read. Trouble is , I can only write if I can squidge the letters around.

Off then are you? Before you go, take a blast of this….” 

I put on “Voodoo Chile (Slight Return)” at full blast on the stereo behind me. Inside, an actor playing my dad yells “Turn that bloody racket down!!!” 

2 comments:

  1. Now is your chance. Soon they will move on to the 70s for history and the 60s will be too far back in time for the current crop to count back to

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  2. The 60s are so far back that even I forget. How could I have thought Queen Victoria reigned? It was Janis Joplin!!

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