Sunday, 20 October 2013

Mods and all that intro

I don't know how this will pan out or whether I'll maintain it, but for the short term I'll give it a go and see what occurs.

The subject of 'Mods' with regards to the phenomenon that emerged in the late 1970's is a very emotive and subjective issue. Born out of several different sub-cultures and emerging in different parts of the country influenced by different cultural and socio economic factors. In our own town it could be argued that there were two distinct if not more sub-divisions of a similar beast.

At the time between 1978 and 1987 I kept a diary and took thousands of images of my mates and what we did and what we got up to. At the start of the millennium I returned to the diaries and started to digitize them by writing them up and embellishing them with more details through research. The diary is on-going with more than 750,000 words (1800 pages) + long. With the advent of self publishing it now seems the right time to do something with these images and this blog is the vehicle to see if there is any interest in such a vernacular take on the subject.

One of the things I'd like to explore here is the question what is a Mod? There was an interesting article in the NME in 1979 that gets mentioned in this article here, where Pete Meaden talks about what it is to be a Mod and who the Mods were and might be in the 1970's. In the 1979 article Pete Meaden states who the Mods are in 1979 and it didn't fit in with my notion at all. But retrospectively (and to some extent at the time I did see his point) I'm in total agreement with his analysis and my take on who the Mods are now might surprise some people other than Simon Grainge who I've had this conversation with many times. (Simon is a lecturer in Media and Films studies and delivers lectures on sub-culture). Dependent on how this comes together I may state my own case as to what it is to be a Mod and what makes you a Mod (I told you this was going to be subjective).

Diary extract from this day 17th January 1987....The rest of the day it snowed on and off, in the evening we went down to Tilbury landing stage with Eve and went on board the big Russian liner that was there and talked to the Russians – Chris, Bendy and me. We had a good talk with them and it was interesting, they loved us. That night I stayed over at Chris’s house as it was warm. We sat up talking about wanting to get out of Tilbury and the trip to the Canaries.

Tonight the temp dropped further still -11 to -14 degrees with the snow averaging one or two foot everywhere, it’s the deepest snow I’ve ever seen! It was so deep I had to do something other than be pissed off by it, so I thought – well you only get snow like this once in your lifetime, so why not have a laugh in it? So we did, we went up Broome Hill me, Tomo, Chris and when we got there we found a big old sledge, so we had a bit of a laugh going down the steep side which faces Tilbury, then we jelled. Later that night we went round to Boffa’s and got him and Xan, then Yindy and Bill and we all jelled up there by foot and had a right laugh. With Chris breaking all the distance records and going right down the bottom and through a ditch into a barbed wire fence and tree trunks – we pissed ourselves laughing!

I stayed over at Rachel’s again Saturday night because of the weather, but managed to get home okay the next morning despite the snow. After our late night sledging excursions the plan was to go out and buy some real sledges and have a mass sledging that afternoon. I rang Rachel and asked if she wanted to come along and she said she’d be down about 17.00. So we all jelled off in the motors via Deneholes garage where we bought some sledges.

When we got there we were well mob handed – Me, Jamie, Bill, Rabbit, Adrian, Boffa, Xan, Oink, Sean McFairclough, Loolie, PJ, Chris and a couple of others. Again we had a right laugh and this time some B&W photo’s went down, including a couple of good group photo’s featuring everybody. Rabbit also video’d a lot of it.


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  2. Loving the diary entries and Pics Dave. All the best, Dan (PJ).