Saturday 5 April 1986

Ooh wow!  What a day.  First things first, my bike was now fully mine!  Yes, today I made the final payment on it!  What a relief!

West Tip won the Grand National at Aintree and in football news, Liverpool defeated Southampton 2-0 in their FA Cup semi final at White Hart Lane, whilst Everton booked their passage to Wembley by defeating Sheffield Wednesday 2-1.  So the first ever Merseyside Derby in the Cup Final was in booked.

And finally, I announced to the world, well to my diary, that my brother was a pain in the neck.  I know I know, but I was 16 he was 14, it’s a teenage brothers thing.

Wednesday 9 April 1986

Oh no.  Another ‘boring’ day.  Again, I played Football Manager on the C64.  I also went to the library, and amongst all those books I was still bored.

At least Man Utd could offer us some entertainment as they lost 2-1 at home to Chelsea this evening.

And over on Channel 4 we had some seminal 1980’s TV, Prospects.  Following the adventures of Jimmy ‘Pincey’ Pince, played by the late great Gary Olsen and Billy, played by Brian Bovell, Prospects was a cult hit for Channel 4 – one of the programmes that only Channel 4 could make.

The sun sets on the Thames, another day comes to an end…

Saturday 12 April 1986

The race for the League Championship was really hotting up now.  Both Liverpool and Everton keeping the pressure on.  Liverpool demolished Coventry City 5-0 at Anfield, as Everton beat Arsenal at Highbury.  Although still level on points with 73 each, Liverpool’s 5 goals may just have swung the goal difference in their favour at +42 versus +37.  Shrewsbury Town had a lovely day by the seaside, beating Brighton and Hove Albion 2-0 at the Goldstone Ground.

I did very little homework – but was feeling rebellious, ‘who cares’ and noted also that my French exam was ‘pretty soon!!!!!!!’ – that’s seven exclamation marks.

Sunday 13 April 1986

Oh no!  The last day before back to school.  In reality, it was the last push for us.  With our ‘O’ Levels looming large on the horizon, we probably only had a few weeks left as regular school goers.  Looking back now (2-Jan-2009) it seems like such an innocent time.  I’m not dismissing issues that some kids have with academic expectations, but if my job consisted solely of preparing for and taking exams, I’d be extremely happy.  Of course this is completely unfeasible, academic qualifications are a means to an end and not a means in themselves, but you get my point.

Any parents tempted to live vicariously through their children, or put undue pressure on them to perform well in exams, please back off, exams etc are NOT the be all and end all.  Life is about living, and ultimately it’s about what you do, not what a few pieces of paper say you’re good at remembering.

Anyway, I got wet during the delivery of my papers, but enjoyed some dry, sunny weather when it was time to go back out to collect the money.  Today I had a great day, taking £116.42 in total.  In footy news, Man Utd entertained us all by losing 2-0, at home, to Sheffield Wednesday.  Ha ha.

Wednesday 16 April 1986

Today I missed some of my Physics lesson.  I went to a YTS information meeting with the careers adviser.  I chose to look at the Engineering and Clerical categories.  Now considering that I wasn’t YTS material, oh no sir – I had plans… big plans, this was most likely a cynical ploy to avoid a lesson, and Physics at that.  Not bad , not bad.

Liverpool climbed back to the top of the league by defeating Luton 1-0 away.  Everton had played the night before, in the same neck of the woods, seeing off Watford by 2 goals to nil.  Points were equal on 76 each with goal difference +43 versus +39.

Saturday 19 April 1986

A spot of French revision for today, I had my first exam – a verbal French one on Tuesday!

Gulp! Both Liverpool and Everton won today, so things were still just as tight at the top of the League.  I went to see Shrewsbury Town versus Wimbledon.  This game resulted in a 1-1 draw, and although I make no comment on it, Wimbledon must have been playing their particularly ugly brand of hoof-it football. Shrewbury’s Gary Stevens, no not the same one as played for Spurs (or the Everton one for that matter), but another Gary Stevens, was sent off too.  As I noted, ‘dirty t**t.’ As I was in town anyway,and feeling a little flush, I spent some of my hard earner on no less than three 7″ singles. I bought Big Country, Look Away, Austrian demi-God Falco’s Rock Me Amadeus and one out of the bargain bucket – Kurtis Blow’s If I Ruled The World.

Sunday 20 April 1986

A big sporting day today.  And, let’s be under no illusion, there was no way that homework, revision or any other form of school work was going to get in the way of it!

Early on, the two races in London Marathon (surely Snickers – ok, sorry) were won by Toshihiko Seko (Japan) and Greta Waitz (Norway).  Then in the afternoon, I watched the Milk (League) Cup Final as Oxford United defeated QPR by 3 goals to nil.  The goals were scored by Hebberd, Houghton and Charles – a great name for a fictional legal practice if ever there was!

And even after all that, we had still had time to go out in the car as a family.  We took a trip up Cardingmill Valley, some spectacular views and if I remember, some quite hairy, narrow roads with long drops to one side.

Tuesday 22 April 1986

Big day today, after yesterday’s lame excuse.  My first ‘O’ Level exam.  French speaking (I know what we call the not writing part of a language exam, but you know, this is a family blog, and if I use the ‘o’ word, I’ll get swamped by unscrupulous spammers offering, well you know, that sort of service from their tacky websites…).  Done, finished.  Out of the way.  What a relief – the exam that is.

In unrelated footy news, West Ham stuffed 8 goals past Newcastle United at the Boleyn Ground.  I think that Newcastle had a goalkeeping crisis and one P. Beardsley went in goal for them.  Unlucky Pete.

Wednesday 23 April 1986

St. George’s Day.

On this day of all days, it is important for England to beat Scotland when they meet in a game of football.  And this they managed to do, just.  Terry Butcher and Glenn Hoddle scored first for England, then Graeme Souness pulled one back from the spot on 57 minutes, making a very hairy last 30 for the English.

Not a lot else happened, except we didn’t get any Physics homework.  A very slow diary day then.