Wednesday, 16 July 2008

sex and drugs and rock and roll

One of the things I once liked most about myself was my rebelliousness. I would go out of my way to make sure that no-one could predict my responses to things or what I'd do next.

Music was a big part of that Linda and I was constantly drawn to artists on the Stiff Records label, including the bloody marvellous Ian Dury and the Blockheads, whose "sex and drugs and rock and roll" single spawned a whole load of fab merchandise - remember the button badges with one word from the title on? Remember the t-shirt, with the rubberised text and the stiff logo on the arm? I had one of those at the time, along with a "if you kill time you murder success" one! Well, when I spotted that t-shirt being re-issued recently I just had to have one. In fact, I also bought another which was a new Stiffy - and very apt in these days of "little blue pills". It bears the very irreverant and very typically Stiff legend "Stiff without any fucking pills".

These two shirts give me a thrill. (Sorry Mum)

Why? Well, they represent a Linda that has been lost. A young rebel who thought nothing of going to gigs five-nights-a-week or jumping into the car, going to Manchester to see a band on a Tuesday night, then driving home overnight, showering and going straight to work with no sleep but lots of great memories. A Linda who had dreams of becoming a" rock photographer. A Linda who knew what she stood for and stood for it whether it was popular or "good" or not. A Linda who believed in things and didn't compromise her values for success or money.

Somehow that Linda got lost along the way, being replaced with a Linda who may have been considered by many to be less abrasive but who Linda didn't recognise.

I bought my two Stiff shirts and wear them proudly in the garden, while cutting the grass. A task that I loathe. Today, I have been wearing my "sex and ...." t-shirt, with a pair of friesian cow-print trousers, cutting the grass and singing along to myself.....

#....Keep your silly ways or throw them out the window
The wisdom of your ways, I've been there and I know
Lots of other ways, what a jolly bad show
If all you ever do is business you don't like.....

I may not be a rock and roll rebel any more, but perhaps now I'm the Great Pretender!

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