MADNESS : BAGGY TROUSERS [SONGS OF CHILDHOOD NOSTALGIA]

Royal Holloway University

Το post του Oannes με τους Madness, μου θύμισε την πρώτη φορά που επισκέφθηκα την Αγγλία στα 80s. Ημουν 11, κι έμεινα για το καλοκαίρι στο Royal Holloway College [νομίζω University τώρα], για διακοπές και μαθήματα Αγγλικών, μαζί με ένα γκρουπ παιδιών. Μερικές μέρες μετά την άφιξή μας, μάθαμε οτι είχε δραπετεύσει από τη γειτονική φυλακή HM Holloway prison ένας κατάδικος. Τα βράδια μας έβριθαν ιστοριών τρόμου, στους διαδρόμους του Βικτωριανού κτιρίου, με τον κατάδικο να έρχεται στο κολλέγιο για να βρει καταφύγιο και επι τη ευκαιρία, να σκοτώνει και μερικά παιδιά! Προφανώς καμία από τις ιστοριές μας δεν πραγματοποιήθηκε. Ενα από τα μαθήματα που είχαμε, ήταν να ακούμε τραγούδια και να προσπαθούμε να καταγράψουμε τους στίχους. Το πρώτο τραγούδι ήταν το “Baggy Trousers”. Οντας 11 και όχι ιδιαίτερα [!] εξοικειωμένη με τη διάλεκτο, δεν μπορούσα να σταματήσω να γελάω καθώς προσπαθούσα να καταλάβω τι λένε! Για την πλάκα, έχω κάνει bold τις λέξεις που είχα μαντέψει τότε! Το Baggy Trousers, ήταν μία από τις πολύ ευχάριστες στιγμές μου εκεί, για να μην πω πόσο συνεισέφερε στο να μην σκέπτομαι τον …κατάδικο. 😉

Aπό το άλμπουμ τους “Absolutely“.

H.M. Prison Holloway

Oannes’ post on Madness reminded me of my first visit to England back in the 80s. I was 11 and stayed during summer at the Royal Holloway college [I think University now], part vacation / part learning English, with a group of kids. A few days after our arrival, we heard that an inmate from the neighboring HM Holloway prison had escaped, making our nights full of stories we’d make about him trying to find a hiding place in this Victorian building and murdering kids in the process! Well, obviously none of that ever happened! One of the lessons we had was listening to songs and trying to write the lyrics. First one given was “Baggy Trousers“. Being 11 and not familiar with the accent …yet, I couldn’t stop laughing while guessing words here and there. As a joke, I’m making them bold in the lyrics below… 😉 Baggy Trousers was one of the happy moments in my time there and definitely took my mind off that escaped inmate! 😉

From their album “Absolutely“.


Naughty boys in nasty schools
Headmasters breaking all the rules
Having fun and playing fools
Smashing up the woodwork tools
All the teachers in the pub
Passing ’round the ready-rub
Trying not to think of when
The lunch-
time bell will ring again.

Oh what fun we had
But, did it really turn out bad
All I learnt at school
Was how to bend not break the rules
Oh what fun we had
But at the time it seemed so bad
Trying different ways
To make a difference to…

The headmaster’s had enough to-day
All the kids have gone away
Gone to fight with next-door’s school
Every term, that is the rule
Sits alone and bends his cane
Same old backsides again
All the small ones tell tall tales
Walking home and squashing snails.
Oh what fun we had
But, did it really turn out bad
All I learnt at school
Was how to bend not break the rules
Oh what fun we had
But at the time it seemed so bad
Trying different ways
To make a difference to the days.
Lots of girls and lots of boys
Lots of smells and lots of noise
Playing football in the park
Kicking Pushbikes after dark
Baggy trousers, dirty shirt
Pulling hair and eating dirt
Teacher comes to break it up
Back of the ‘ead with a plastic cup.
Oh what fun we had
But, did it really turn out bad
All I learnt at school
Was how to bend not break the rules
Oh what fun we had
But at the time it seemed so bad

Trying different ways
To make a difference to the days.
Baggy trousers, baggy trousers, baggy trousers
Baggy trousers, baggy trousers, baggy trousers

…and just in case first video don’t work:

posted by Marina Kanavaki

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4 Comments

  1. Ken Powell August 19, 2020 at 12:29 pm

    To this day, I adore Madness. And Baggy Trousers brings back some very real memories of 1970s schooling. Change was coming even then but it was ghastly enough!

  2. marina kanavaki August 19, 2020 at 2:07 pm

    Me too!
    I know…

  3. Resa August 24, 2020 at 9:08 pm

    That was Madness! Good madness, and new to me!

  4. marina kanavaki August 25, 2020 at 11:38 am

    European hit, was all over the radios back then! 😉 Brilliant guys!!!

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