Sunday, 29 April 2012

A to Z 1950s/60s Nostalgia: Y

Y Smell:
Yardley talc - We all used talcum power in those days, bathroom floors white with it, skin pores clogged with it, the air full of lavender powder.

Y Memories:
Yardstick - I still can't think in metres and centimetres but I no longer think in yards. There are three feet to a yard and a yard can roughly be measured from your nose to the tip of your middle finger. I can remember salesmen measuring out yards of material in this way when I went shopping with my private dressmaker Grandma and Great Aunt. They had a wooden Yardstick in their workshop and while they sewed I used it as a hobby horse. *Giddy-up Yardstick*...

...and now I'm really excited because Mr A has produced THE Yardstick. It was in a cupboard for safe keeping and here it is...

Youth culture - Teenagers were 'invented' in the 1950s. Before the war people in their teens went to work and dressed exactly like their parents and this continued during the war where they fought alongside adults.

In the 1950s a new culture emerged with teddy boys, pop music, coffee bars, rock and roll and clothes that were fun and, most importantly, different from the older generation. The culture was further spread by stars like James Dean in the film, Rebel Without a Cause.

Yodelling - Frank Ifield, Karl Denver, what was it about pop singers and yodelling in the 1960s? Aren't you glad the fad is over? *yod-ell-ay-ha-ay*

Y Programmes:
On TV: 
Yogi Bear
Mike Yarwood in persons
Yellow Submarine

Iconic Song:
Yesterday by the Beatles with over 1,600 cover versions

You only live Twice
The Young Ones *
* That's Cliff Richard IN the Young Ones and not Cliff Richard AND the Young Ones which happened much later!
Y Names:
Jimmy Young
Mike Yarwood
The Yardbirds who provide the...

Y Music:
The Yardbirds singing For Your Love

Almost there! What have I missed today?

If you're enjoying these memories then you'll also enjoy
Anne Mackle's blog at Is Anyone There? 
Her A to Z Challenge is about memories of the 1960s and 70s.


  1. Hi Ros, What a great Y page - wow. The Yard Stick - what wonderful, wonderful memories of Grandma and Aunties. And Yardley Talc my all time favourite smell.
    Here are my Y memories - loads of songs but not much else - I think we've exhausted every 50's and 60's memory there is!!!!! phewwww *big sigh*

    I had Jimmy Young and the Yardbirds too - ah fantastic Jimmy.

    Songs: "Yes Tonight Josephine" by Johnny Ray, "Young Love" by Tab Hunter, "You Belong to Me" by Jo Stafford, "You'll never Walk Alone" by Gerry and Pacemakers, "Your my World" by Cilla Black, "You really Got Me" by The Kinks, "Yellow Submarine" by The Beatles."Young Ones" by Cliff, and "You are my one and Only","You are my Sunshine","Yakkaty Yak", "Yellow Rose of Texas", Yesterday", and "Ying Tong Song" - by the Goons!!!!

    TV: Loved "Yes Priminister" and still have the old tapes and Yogi Bear, can add "Your Life in Their Hands" and.... the "Your Never alone with a Strand" advert.

    Yo - Yo's - the toy and
    Yo-Yo biscuits wrapped in silver paper with lovely soft toffee fillings.

    Hi Pat - I wonder if you have all the same songs - I'm going off the air now for an hour or two but will be looking forward to seeing your lists when.... "normal service is resumed"!!!!!!

  2. Great Y memories, Ros. I love the yardstick hobby horse.
    I had the Yardbirds - the song by them I remember best is "Ha Ha said the Clown".

    Hi, Rifka!
    Yes, my Y memories were the same as yours. The mint Yoyo biscuit was my favourite.
    My list looks very short now *smile*
    Songs: You Don't Have to Say You Love Me, Young Girl get out of My Mind, You’ve Lost that Loving Feeling, Yours until Tomorrow

    TV: The Yana Show, “Yabadabadoo” –The Flintstones,
    Yes/No Interlude in Take your Pick

    In the News: Yuri Gagarin

  3. Third cup of coffee helped jig some more Y songs:
    You’re Breaking My Heart – The Inkspots,You, You’re Driving me Crazy – Temperance Seven
    You Don’t Know – Helen Shapiro,
    Yeh Yeh - Georgie Fame,
    Yes my Darling Daughter РEdie Gorm̩

  4. Lots of awesome Y words. My mom loves the song Yesterday. I didn't know teenagers were started in the 1950s. That's like today's kids and being a tween. I was never a tween. Tweens are something new.

  5. Who can forget Cliff's Young Ones?
    Wonderful Y words to remember.


  6. Every time I read your memories or write my own I end up with teary eyes. I remember the yardstick, we used one in school and as most of my clothes were made by my mum's friend or my aunt I remember going for material and it being measured like that. Mike Yardwood show was great. How could I forget Yo Yo biscuits when my dad worked in a biscuit factory? We had bags of them every wee. Only one more to go .

  7. Pat - its amazing what coffee can do - 'Yes My Darling Daughter' wow that brings back memories of standing by a certain juke-box and the Temperance Seven - no one else has ever captured that unique sound they created. "Wonderful" *deep nostalgic sigh*. Wish we could still get the proper, frothy coffee of the 50's..... another *sigh*.

    Cassam - Yo Yo biscuits remind me of the school tuck shop and break time - weren't they delicious.

  8. Hi Rifka, knew you'd love that Yardstick. There are just a few more memories to squeeze out yet.

    Hi Pat, I loved Yes my Darling Daughter too. What a great memory.

    Hi Jessica, I was a teenager but, you'll not be surprised to hear, never a tween!

    Hi Yvonne, I saw an extract of the film recently though. It's feels very cheesy now!

    Hi Anne, I know what you mean. Nostalgia is one of those emotions where you love to be sad.
    What will we do with ourselves when this is over?!?

  9. Great Ys! I remember well the talc smell. Love that you've still got the yardstick. For teaching metres with the kids, I tell them shoulder to opposite finger tip, it's just those 3 inches longer :)

  10. Great Y's indeed...I remember the yardley talcum grandmother used it and I loved the smell!

  11. I absolutely loved reading this! Yardley was in our home when I was growing up. I have a yardstick and still call it that even though we are metric. I fell in love with Cliff Richard when I was six. Great memories!

  12. Yellow submarine is the background song for one of my joint books, set in the future. We called it Golden Submarine. It is the fourth book in the series and not yet published. Everyone knows the song. Why are some songs embedded in our brains from 'back then'?

  13. When I got a swimming badge in primary school, I was offered the choice of yards or metres on the certificate, as though they were interchangeable. Dad told me yards were longer, so I chose them!

  14. Hi Rosalind! I have seen Rebel Without a Cause. One of my younger sisters was really into the Beatles. Had some of their albums.

  15. The Beatles 'Yesterday' brings back a very particula, silly,r memory for me. When my lovely Dad (from a very poor family in Bradford) was knighted, I was there with my Mum and sister in The Throne Room of Buckingham Palace to see the Queen do the sword bit on his shoulders. In the gallery at the back of the room was a military band playing pop song tunes, and, yes, they played 'Yesterday' .... all my troubles seemed so far away, now it looks as though they're here to stay, etc' Which was so inappropriate for this moment when people were being honoured for all sorts of wonderful lifetime achievments that my Mum and got a terrible fit of giggles!
    Thanks for all the memories, Ros. Ahem. I am too young to remember some of them, though!
    One more to go - you can do it!

  16. What a neat theme for your A to Z! I just saw this today. :-) I will be back to reminisce :-)

  17. The Yardbirds! Man does that take me down memory lane.

    And yardsticks. I got spanked with one of those a few times. At school. I was a little pistol.

  18. thanks for visiting wordsplash. Now I'm enjoying your blog and I zoomed backwards thru the alphabet. What a fun theme!!! Great job.

  19. You really covered Y. I can't add a thing. A nice stroll down memory lane. Thanks for visiting me. I'll be back.

  20. Hi Ros .. I'm behind getting here - and am sure I'll go through your remembrances again .. so much fun.

    Talc everywhere .. and Yardley was such an iconic brand .. Yardstick's they were great and slide rules .. could never work them, but always wanted to! Great that Mr A found your Yardstick ..

    And you didn't use Yellow as a colour .. other than in the submarine ..

    Loved these .. cheers Hilary


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