Scholastic in Plastic

A purse by Pipless Jam.
Made, as you can see, from a 1955 piano forte exam list!

There were other offerings too, like maps and comics, but this totally appealed to my inner swot.

Being the child of 70's schoolteacher, anything scholastic is very nostalgic, throw in some laminated plastic and things get really exciting.

I loved piano's but we didn't have one. As a teenager, I begged for a Casio keyboard one Birthday.

This is the sort of thing I had in mind...

This is the sort of thing I got...
Imagine it's a Bontempi from Woolco.

Even painting it matt black didn't help.

Still, Mr Carruthers the music teacher was well impressed, he promoted me to keyboards for the Xmas concert at the rival school. Just had to do do the bit of "Please,Please Me" that goes "dee-dee,dee-dee,dee-dee" before the C'mon,c'mon's start.

No, I hadn't rehearsed, but hey, how tricky can a Beatles ditty be?

We file onto the stage where our instruments await. Bit shocked to see my keyboard not only taking center stage but in front of my recorder playing chums.

Curtains open and there, in the front row, is my primary 3 teacher Mrs Douglas, a familiar face from my scholastic past. Strangely, this really threw me .... Stage fright .... all I have to do is play a few notes - but when? - Oh hell. I'll just crash in with them now and again, could tell from the audience's faces that this wasn't going well. Mrs Douglas was frowning now, when will this end? Curtains close, no one speaks, we shuffle off to the minibus.

Mr Carruthers didn't speak to me for a week, then one day came up behind me, lent into my ear and hummed those few notes mockingly. Think I was forgiven.

*Edit* The keyboard did get me into a band but I was dropped when they discovered an androgynous boy keyboard ace who,( just like me), wore white makeup, eyeliner and fingerless gloves. His keyboard was more portable and he was a twin! I couldn't compete with either.


  1. interesting stuff

  2. what a cool purse!

    Love Miiicha

  3. What a purse! Beautiful! I wan't one too.


  4. I like the Casio advert. Every single day of the eighties was exactly like the scene in the picture, as far as I can remember. Even in small Scottish towns with no underground transport.

  5. Wish I'd grown up in YOUR small Scottish town in that case! x