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Woolly Bully

PostPosted: Sat May 19, 2007 12:40 am
by CantSleepClownsWillGetMe
I feel for you lot, I really do. But, to add a little balance, (and to alleviate the worries of any members thinking about sending their children to the UK to complete their education!) I want to speak from the point of view of a non-'nerd' and non-educationally abused member of the forum.

I can't recall that I was ever bullied. I'm sure I would have remembered if I had been. I never had my head flushed down the toilet. Was never held upside down by the ankles and shaken till the tanners fell, jingling, to the tarmac from my blazer pockets. (Oh sorry. No-one did that one did they? Um ... can't think where that one came from. Moving on ....)

What I'm trying to say, in my rambling way, is that even us regular kids - with no facial blemishes, who could kick a ball with a fair degree of accuracy, had no gripe against society/parents/teachers, with no mannerisms that could remotely be mistaken for homosexuality - still found solace and a sense of belonging in pop music.

I agree with Howard who, I think, said that it was something that was 'mine alone', something entirely separate from being a child of my parents. I would also say that it doesn't necessarily take the words of a song to set the hungry mind of a teenager to thinking about the world's wrongs and rights. Because that's what we were, hungry. For books. For knowledge. For the spark that would set us off on our path in life. And the music, the sound that is unique for all of us, quite simply, helped us on our way.

... time for some cocoa I think!

PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 9:25 am
by Gordon Moore
I can't quite work out whether my education was good or bad. I was rubbish at football, though sporty. I also seemed to fail at humour and witticism which is the only real alternative to avoid being bashed about, or more usually threatened with a bashing if one didn't back down. I occasionally excelled at being a clown in class and mucking about. I did have an advantage that I enjoyed science and had basically taught myself most of the mathematics needed for O levels because I was really into astronomy and then electronics. I built myself a synthesiser, the keyboard being made from a stripped piano with rubber bands, electrical braiding from coax and drawing pins - der...

One of the main issues with school as I reflect and now observe is that it's about seeing what sort of control you can develop over others. Some fail miserably and are pitilessly mocked and disparaged. Others go to the other extreme and become violent threatening thugs.

Although we often hear about those that are picked on, we rarely hear about those who were the bullies. I do wonder if they ever reflect on what they were like at school, feel shame, seek to redress the balance or do they just become more ignorant and abhorrent as they get older?

I was probably just about on the lower side of the middle of the continuum. So, although at times I was picked on - name calling being my bete noir - I generally managed to survive okay. (It was a boys only school for me, which led to many problems with totally misunderstanding how women worked later on in life!)

What disturbs me a lot about school is how kids behave to each other. It's hard to see any real affection or kindness expressed to others. Many kids are so self absorbed in status and cool, and generally their usual technique for self building is to put someone else down, by mocking or the sarcastic rejoinder. It is often venomous. This is particularly naked in the lower ability classes where the pupils don't have the sophistication or language ability of their higher ability peers. It is quite horrible to see them calling each other even in my strictly run class.

I often wonder if my own schooldays could have been better of during the first day at grammar school I had simply attempted to beat the crap out of the first thug who attempted to exert power over me. Unfortunately self preservation and fear of being temporarily damaged won over. Is violence an answer?

University saved me. Not the subject and lectures, but the freedom to try and develop me. I loved it. Not the lectures or course which was pants, but the social life and of course the discovery of girls. I guess I was fortunate to have that opportunity. Travel was of course a natural successor to that and again having an incredible amount of experiences and interactions with all kinds of people from different countries and cultures.

If this world wasn't such a mess, i think I'd make it compulsory for 18 year olds to have to travel. A real (inter)national service.

PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 1:06 pm
by Dayna
I was one of the kids that were sort of picked on in the beginning about some things. We had both girls & boys at my school. Had my first crush on a boy when I was in 3rd grade, which I feel silly about now. :-) I had a hard time with math so it carried over into other things in my life. I spent a lot of time in my room listening to music.
My collection of records & I loved my brand new stereo that my Mom & Dad bought for me. I remeber vividly the very first thing I heard on it, was Dire Straits. Whatever else I listened to at that time was what was Popular then and some different things.
In highschool, I remember a whole bunch of kids played hookie to go to a Journey concert. I wasn't one of them. I didn't really fit in. I tried liking some of the groups they liked,Kiss, Journey,ect. but never really had an ear for those.
I think that is what led to me eventually just learning to love the huge variety of music I love now. I don't know if it had any influence on my art at all.

PostPosted: Sun May 20, 2007 5:27 pm
by Adam Blake
Gordon Moore wrote:One of the main issues with school as I reflect and now observe is that it's about seeing what sort of control you can develop over others.


I think you're probably about the same age as me and Howard (ie, mid to late 40s) and in our day grammar schools were run along the lines of public schools. (Public schools means private, fee paying schools for the benefit of our foreign readers). As any politically aware ex-public schoolboy will tell you, the whole point of the system is that you are being trained to RULE. In order to rule, you must know what it is to be ruled. You get treated like dirt for five years and then you get to treat people like dirt for two or three. Great, isn't it? This is how we Brits built an Empire.

For all those interested in this kind of thing, please do read George Orwell's "Such, Such Were The Joys": the most wonderfully damning account of the old English education system ever written by an Old Etonian.

if I could do it all over again ....,

PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 10:31 am
by ritchie
something always bothers me about my school education. I went to an all boys school and there was one particular teacher who we nicknamed 'fruity Noel' who had a fondness for young boys. He would grab them and put his cloak around them cuddling them in.

Of course at such a young age we had nt a clue what was going on. They say that it sticks in your mind and it can cause problems in later life.

Well here is the rub ...., it's absolutely true as it's really had an impact on me.

He never grabbed me. Why not? I was a good looking child. What was it about me he did nt like?

I'm waiting for one of those adverts to come on television, the no win no fee ones.

"were you ignored by the creepy teacher at school? do you think that is why you have never fancied being a Morris dancer? If so ring .....,"

Yes they certainly knew how to 'hurt' kids in my day.

PostPosted: Mon May 21, 2007 12:12 pm
by Gordon Moore
Adam Blake wrote:
Gordon Moore wrote:One of the main issues with school as I reflect and now observe is that it's about seeing what sort of control you can develop over others.


I think you're probably about the same age as me and Howard (ie, mid to late 40s) and in our day grammar schools were run along the lines of public schools. (Public schools means private, fee paying schools for the benefit of our foreign readers). As any politically aware ex-public schoolboy will tell you, the whole point of the system is that you are being trained to RULE. In order to rule, you must know what it is to be ruled. You get treated like dirt for five years and then you get to treat people like dirt for two or three. Great, isn't it? This is how we Brits built an Empire.

For all those interested in this kind of thing, please do read George Orwell's "Such, Such Were The Joys": the most wonderfully damning account of the old English education system ever written by an Old Etonian.


Interesting and insightful take on my words, but not quite what I was getting at. I was thinking more of the power plays in relationships as in basically: I want to do this thing, but I need you people to do it with me, because I haven't yet developed the self awareness to just do what I want, whether you want to or not...

er

PostPosted: Tue May 22, 2007 9:32 am
by howard male
Adam wrote -

think you're probably about the same age as me and Howard (ie, mid to late 40s) and in our day grammar schools were run along the lines of public schools.


I weren't no grammar school toff, mate! I failed my 11+ (couldn't spell, couldn't solve puzzles, couldn't do maths) and so ended up at the trashiest, grubbiest, nastiest comprehensive in Cambridge - if not the world. It wasn't about being ruled in order to learn to rule, it was about being steel rulered across the backside, in order to learn what it is to be ruled.

PostPosted: Wed May 23, 2007 11:00 pm
by Adam Blake
Ah ha! You wuz being trained to be a cog in the well oiled machine of commerce, mate. Innit.

PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 12:28 am
by Dayna
I was reading back through this, & it is really hard to believe the abuse some of you guys went through at school. When i went to school, I thought it was rough, just not fitting in with the other kids, or not being considered "cool".
But, I don't see how I could ever survive the things that went on there, at school.
I was in Highschool during the 80s & one of the most popular albums was Pink Floyd's, The Wall. From reading what some of you wrote, it puts those songs in a different light, kind of. Were some of those songs were based in what happened in schools?

PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 12:56 am
by Adam Blake
Yep. The teachers could whack you round the head if they wanted to, and they quite often wanted to.

plug smiffy etc ...rule ok.

PostPosted: Wed Oct 03, 2007 6:13 pm
by ritchie
I was discussing this with my wife (a good catholic girl) with regards to what Dayna was saying, about 'fitting in with her peers'.

My wife reckons it was so strict at her school that it became an 'us & them' situation, 'Us' being the pupils and 'Them' being the Rulers/Teachers. So the kids formed a common bond, consequently bullying and peer pressure did nt seem to be such an issue as it is in schools today.

Yes Pink Floyd have a lot to answer for!

'Hey Teecha, leave those kids alone ..... my giddy aunt ...in my opinion what we need is the good old fashioned .... whoops here's the wife, must dash.