Of course I can spell reminiscing and I can do it without the aid of spell-checker. Bloody hell – the kids of today can’t even spell “you” – they have to put “u” instead. Cane the little buggers – that’s what I say. My mate Albie said (during one of those reminiscing evenings) that he was caned every maths lesson.
The teacher used to go around the class asking them questions and when it got to Albie’s turn he was so nervous that he didn’t know his own name so he used to stand up and hold his hand out for the cane. Some teachers were very brutal back in “the old days”.
I loved junior school but hated the secondary part of my education. Goole Grammar School – what a joyless, fucking hole it was. The only good part of it was mixing with the opposite sex. Talking about spelling – I saw someone’s Facebook profile the other day and they had been to *********** Grammer School. Now there’s a kid who wasn’t caned enough during English lessons.
What’s bringing back memories of yesteryear is for one thing, it’s my younger child’s 40th birthday coming up soon. Enough said about that.
The second thing is that my youngest grandchild is starting her secondary education next month. That will be all four grandkids at the same school (I don’t suppose it’s a record!). It won’t be too bad for Annie as she is full of confidence and she will know quite a few of her class-mates – and of course her big brother and two older cousins.
I’ll never forget my first day – it was terrifying. I suppose the fear started before the first day at school – the dreaded list of things you had to have with you like rugby boots, swimming trunks, books, pens (no ball-points allowed) and that fucking blazer that would have fit your dad. All over the world there must have been a billion mothers saying those immortal words – “You’ll grow into it!” – “Yeah, but not before I leave school!” The Irish have a fabulous saying for something being too big – “it’ll fit Finn McCool” – apparently F. McC was the “Giant” of “The Giant’s Causeway” of the north-west coast of Ireland.
My first blazer would have fit Finn McCool’s dad. Apparently it should be spelt something like Fiann McCuhal.
My secondary school days entailed catching the 8.06 a.m. train. All through the four years I caught this train I thought it was an ungodly hour. On the first day, all the first-years were put into the assembly hall which seemed huge and our old school would have fitted in to it six times over. We then had to wait for our names to be called out. A bit like the Sorting-Hat in Harry Potter. I can’t remember much else of the day.
Equality was not practiced at GGS – the girls were called by their christian names and the boys by their surnames. I hated that.
Talking of names ….
Last night’s quiz had a question in the “Celebrity & Royalty” round which was – who called their kid Madonna Bluebell (or was it t’other way round?). My classes at school contained of names like Steve, Dave, Stu, Col, John, Dennis, James, Carol, Linda, Sandra, Julia, Maureen, Christine and Valerie. In my younger granddaughter’s class there was…
- Flip-Flop Mousetrap
- Toe-Nail Teddy-Bear
- Sinkplug Kettle
- Crossbow Goldfish
- Pea-Pod Pickle-tray
- Jellyfish Business-Park
- Ronaldo Shrek Lemon-Tree
- Princess Fiona Rooney
- Pepper-Pot Pissy-Pants
Ah no – I made that last one up. I suppose the only saving grace is that there are so many stupid names that the poor little sods are in one big communal pickle. Perhaps this stupid-name generation will rise up and commit mass murder on their parents in the next ten to twenty years. It will serve the silly buggers right.