Sunday 20 September 2009


For crying out loud, I put up one post about Mullumbumboy and half the loons in the universe descend.

Ok, two or three loons. But that is a lot for me. I am not used to loons. This is a quiet backwater in the greater blogsphere, with not a lot of action. A few loons show up and it's like the Hell's Angels visiting a small country town for a bit of R&R (rape and wreckage).

I should explain that Junior goes to a public school (aka government school or state school), not a private school; yet his school has a strict uniform policy. At least what passes for "strict" in the state system. I think they reckon their policy is working if 50% of the kids turn up each day wearing one item of regulation uniform. Standards have clearly slipped since I was put on detention for not pulling my socks up and told to clean the play ground because I had not polished by black leather shoes that morning.

The uniform that they get these days is what I would have called a sports outfit back in my day. Polo shirt, sloppy pants that are halfway to tracksuit pants, and black sneakers. Gone is the tie, blazer, long socks and polished leather shoes. And I mean polished. Even in junior school, we sat down each morning and gave our shoes a spit-polish shine.

Anyway, Junior's Principal is always pushing the uniform policy, and we back the Principal to the hilt. Junior used to do his best to flout the rules by losing or wrecking bits of uniform that he didn't like. However, he found that it was much worse to have me drive him to school, and then visit the uniform shop with him to purchase a replacement item. The cringe-worthy impact of walking through the school grounds in full view of every other kid with a parent, particularly one in a suit, is not something to sneeze at.

Especially when you point at girls and say loudly, "Is that Emily, the one you like?", or say hello to his friends, but call them by their full name (eg, "Hello William, you left a pink sock at our place on the weekend", instead of "Hi Bill"). When you do that, you just know he is going to cop grief for the rest of the week.

And then there is the small talk that you loudly make in the shop with other parents; should Junior join the interpretive dance troupe, the problems of getting a teenager with an erection out of bed in the morning and so on. Is there anything teenagers hate more than being discussed in front of other adults?

He found that the prospect of having me on the school grounds was more horrifying than wearing his uniform properly, so I guess we have had a small victory.

1 comment:

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