The Auntie Doris Years: 1960

image1960 was a ruddy good year for our coloured friends what with the “winds of change” blowing across Africa, and the Civil Rights Movement getting some successes in America and Cassius Clay getting a gold medal in the Olympic Games and then turning professional an’all. And a good thing too! I never could abide racialists and I am still of the same opinion on the other side. Like I have said before, there aren’t any racialists on the other side, people seem to grow up a bit when they pass over, so the sooner that Nick Griffin passes over the better, and that Nigel Fromage or whatever his name is. I am sure that, deep down, they are both decent people who love their mothers, but they have got a bit carried away somewhere along the line and lost the ruddy plot a bit, so it would be nice if they passed on before they had the chance to do anything really stupid and let their mothers and their countries down. Never mind ruddy humanity.

Any road, it was a funny year for me, 1960. For a start, my mother died. She had had a couple of good years since they locked my father up, but it was a mercy in the end. She had malignancy down below, and when you are malignant down there, it’s only going to end one way, and nobody likes to suffer.
Any road that left little April May at 25, with the house to herself. What came next was a surprise to everyone. She only goes and announces that she is going to go and get married doesn’t she? And you’ll never guess who to. Never in a month of Sundays. So I had better tell you. Only our little Cyril. That’s all!
Well you could have knocked me and Raymond down with a couple of feathers. One feather would have done the trick if you’d caught us right. And before you start going on about funny relationships and stuff like that, remember this. April May was my little sister, and even if she was my daughter (which she wasn’t) Little Cyril was my Raymond’s brother. So there was no reason why any person present shouldn’t hold their ruddy tongue and mind their own ruddy business. No ruddy reason at all. Especially when you consider that me and Raymond were never actually married. Not that we used to brag about that either of course, but what’s our business is our business.
Any Road, they had a lovely wedding that December, and after that we got shut of Little Cyril, because he moved in with her, and she was the one who had to put up with a roomful of radio cases and valves and cathode ray tubes and speakers and The Lord alone knows what. So we had a bit extra space too.
I enjoyed a nice bit of tongue at the reception too. Yes. Arthur Knaggs was still in the business, and still knew how to make a celebration unforgettable. And even at 46, I could still appreciate his little touches. My Raymond preferred crab paste. Ahh well. It takes all kinds.
Auntie Doris’s top pop pick of 1960: “Theme From a Summer Place” by Percy Faith and his Orchestra. One of these days I might actually get around to watching “A Summer Place” but maybe not. It’s probably a pile of ruddy shite. But this music is divine. One of my very favourite pieces of music ever. I would have that on my desert island, along with Arthur Knaggs and an endless supply of tongue.

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