The Trilby and the ‘Mod’

Construction offices are strange places, all those drawings, plans and schedules. So, there I am waiting to review an apprentice with the Site manager, Trevor, and he asks me about the book I am working on. I explain it’s set in the 70’s and basically about Skinheads and Rockers. (I tailor the synopsis to the audience, having not actually written a synopsis yet.) Trevor tells he was a Mod in the late 70’s early 80’s. We have a long discussion about how kids today don’t have an identity. The Rockers and the Teds had their motor bikes and Rock’n’Roll.  The Mods had their scooters and the Who. The skinheadshad their Ska and Reggae. The Punks had Johnny Rotten.  The New Romantics had their Duran Duran. The Goths had their Cure. There was a fashion that went with it all and of course the Mods and Rockers had their battles. Today their music is beep, beep boom, boom and eee, eee, trust me, my students played me some, try the link if you don’t believe me. 😂 Their fashion? Well, it’s is a pair of joggers and a hoodie. I think there is certain lack of imagination going on there.

“Do you know how I became a Mod?,” asks Trevor. So he tells me. In the late 70’s, he was 12 years old, he was clearing a house with the local boy Scout group when he found an old man’s Trilby, he put it on and liked it, it was different. He liked it so much he went to school in it and some other lads said, “Ooh! you’re a Mod!” Trevor had no idea what a ‘Mod’ was and unable to Google it he had to ask some other boys who explained this phenomenon to him. He decided to ask around and discovered where Mods hung out. Trevor liked this movement, he liked the fashion and the music. He was a Mod! When he was 16 he went to London with his mates, he’d saved £87. Yes folks we were allowed to travel in those days. He’d been working for one and half years and we were older than our years. So there’s Trevor in Carnaby Street when he sees this blue Mod suit for £80, hmm;  £7 was enough for a weekend in London, thinks Trevor. Now Trevor is sixteen years-old walking down Carnaby Street in his Small Faces shiny blue suit and his John Lennon sunglasses when four years earlier he’d been a boy scout. Were you something in your youth and what turned you on to it I wonder? Oh! I missed the Hippies. 😘

About charliecountryboy

Carpenter and Carpentry Lecturer. Writer, 5k and 10k runner, musician. Curious about life and all those wonderful people in it.
This entry was posted in 1970'S, Blogging, Fashion, History, Humour, Life, Lifestyle, Music, Opinion and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

31 Responses to The Trilby and the ‘Mod’

  1. I have to own it, Charlie. I was a New Romantic in the 80’s. It used to take us 3 hours to get ready to go out we had that much make-up on 🙄😂

    Liked by 6 people

  2. This is so fabulous Charlie! You Brits we’re setting the world on fire then!

    Can you imagine “Rock the Casbah” getting any airplay now?

    We were lucky to be alive when we were.

    Liked by 5 people

  3. Wilt says:

    Sis and I were so into the Smiths and Joy Division in the 80s. Yeah, we were THOSE kids – total outsiders. I got more into punk rock as the 80s went on (Husker Du, Kennedys, Black Flag). Funny, I was into classical music when I was much younger, esp Bartok piano concertos, so weird and atmospheric.

    Liked by 2 people

  4. S. says:

    Happy Sunday 🙂

    Liked by 2 people

  5. S_MW says:

    I have never been into just one genre of music. I’ve loved (mostly) everything from punk to country. I often dressed as a punk and was briefly a mod after seeing Leslie Ash in Quadrophenia. I wanted to be her (for 5 minutes) but my boyfriend at the time was a pseudo mod too. The 80’s were definitely MY era though. During the Bay City Roller craze, my mum refused to buy me tartan trousers but I secretly hated the 70’s music/fashions anyhow and punk was the first genre that I felt like ME. I loved it. I recently went to an 80’s night dressed as a punk, which I’d based on Siouxsie Sioux, but I ended up looking more like Robert Smith from the Cure. I was the only punk/goth there. I spoke to bunch of girls clad in day-glo leg warmers and ra-ra skirts, which I never wore in the 80s, and discovered one of them was 2 years old when I was 20.

    Liked by 2 people

    • Yeah the 70’s were pretty dreadful fashion wise, unless you were Bowie. But for 15-17 year old males Hotpants were okay, probably can’t say that these days! Loved Siouxsie Sioux and once I’d been through the Rok’n’Roll faze like you I didn’t really have an ‘era’ I lost interest around 2010-12 when bands had practically disappeared, replaced by Pop Idols etc. Thanks for the input, Allane Hope your doing well 😀

      Like

      • S_MW says:

        It seems I’m quite unusual but I love music of the 90’s and the 20’s because they’re not really all about the reality tv stars. Frankly, I think there’s some amazing talent to have come from those shows…but that’s my opinion. I loved the 80’s but there was a lot of pish then too, and I’ve never been stuck in any era (like my ex, who bugged me with how scathing he was about his kids’ tastes). I love most music. Only looked good in hotpants when I was 8…

        Liked by 2 people

  6. Most people seem to use it as a mild insult, but I’m proud to still be accused of being an old hippy!

    Liked by 2 people

    • It’s a great ethos and I’d got to the end of the post before I realised. I missed Grunge and other stuff too. I might follow it up next week with my story and elaborate a little. Do you have any Hippy themed post I could link to 😉

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  7. Charlie, you’ve covered a huge part of memory lane. 🤔🥺Looking forward to your full write! 👍

    Liked by 2 people

  8. Carolyn Page says:

    Charlie, in the 60s, when I was a young teenager in Australia, the basics were Mods, Surfers, and Bikies! I couldn’t surf, I was afraid of the bikers, but, I adored the clothes the Mods wore. Apart from that I loved to go to ‘Beatle Village’ (mid 60s). It was a discotech where all the groups of the day played their fab music and my girlfriend and I danced away the night… Arhhhh… the memories! You’ve certainly hit a nerve for many of us – it would seem.
    But, I am a little confused now, Charlie. Are you currently working, or are you ‘retired’.. Or maybe there’s a bit of both happening? 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

    • Ah, love those memories Carolyn. I resigned to concentrate on my book but there are some at College that have had a hard time excepting this and have ‘nattered’ me to take up a Partime Temporary Contract (No teaching!!!) Assessing apprentices and developing the Level 3 Carpentry Apprentices for their End Point Assessment, it’s two days a week and quite easy for me with nearly as much money as I got for a full week (Yes, I made them pay! 😂) So definitely not retiring but not really working 😂

      Liked by 1 person

  9. What’s a mod.. 😉

    Liked by 2 people

  10. We might have but in the 60’s my favourite singer was jimmy osmond.. hahahahahahaha so Mod is a foreign language.. We had the Who in the 70’s and we were avid fans of rodriguez. The other groups..I have no idea who you are talking about..

    Liked by 2 people

  11. Lara/Trace says:

    I saw the WHO, Charlie and it changed me forever. I still adore ’em so I am a mod.

    Like

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