Me and my brother. I'm the handsome intellectual one (the one on the right, stupid!)
I was almost seven when this was taken, my brother just gone five. This appears to have been taken the same time as the
Don't be misled by my brother's 'angelic' appearance. He was a right little 'tearaway' and would take on any boy, even
up to twice his size, beat the living daylights out of him, and still have plenty of strength and energy to beat
me up after as well, which he frequently did! That did wonders for my self-esteem, that did! Once, the 'big brother'
of a kid he had beaten up earlier came round our house to exact retribution, by which time my brother had wisely scarpered,
leaving me to face his music. I was the one that got belted, as the 'big brother' didn't believe the
" It wasn't me wot dun it, honest! It was me little brother. " line of mine!
Note our 'designer' jumpers. These were hand-knitted by my mum. With money tight, this was one way of keeping the bills
down. My mum could knock out a jumper like one of these in a day. Looks like another couple are well overdue, judging by the
length of the arms. My mother practised re-cycling long before it became fashionable and the province of the 'Aga' classes.
She would unpick the wool from a pair of jumpers like these when they became too small, roll the wool up in a ball, store
it for a while, and, a couple of years later, a new jumper that fitted perfectly would emerge from my mother's knitting needles
made from the old wool.
And that wasn't the only thing that got re-cycled in our house. It was common then to sell oranges individually wrapped
up in soft, white, tissue paper. No prizes for guessing what that ended up being used for! (Well, it beat ripped up pages
of 'The Daily Sketch'!)
Over the decades my mum must have knitted hundreds of jumpers for various members of our family, and even knitted the
school cricket pullover I needed when I had to play cricket in Form 1 of Cardiff High School - not that I got much
wear out of it, always being 'last man in'. If memory serves, I only got to hold the bat twice!
My mum is still 'knitting one, pearling one' as good as ever. Think of all those millions of stitches! She's just
finished knitting a 'weapon of mass destruction' for Saddam Hussein. Looks like he won't be needing it now. Perhaps she can
palm it off to the Syrians, or the North Koreans, or the Iranians, or whoever else the 'United States of Arrogance' has
now got its sights on (France?). Any offers? Schhhh. Don't tell George 'Dubya'!
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