Tuesday, 21 September 2010
(Picture from www.supercoloring.com)
Jack has just started in Year 7 at a great, big, huge boys school that seems to be sponsored by BMW. It's a very masculine environment; given there is no father at home, I see the school as his metaphorical father with loads of male role models. Anyways, even with me being a bit of a socialist, and a leftie, my views on education are surprisingly serious: i.e education is everything, work hard, play nice, do well. No excuses.
And pretty Catholic too: don't hide your whatevers under a bushel - and then that parable in the bible (about making use of your talents) often springs to mind too. So my family philosophy is: "Make use of your talents and help others. No excuses."
It's a shame my family consists of just me and Jack: I quite fancy being matriach of a small army.
Yesterday Jack texted me: 'I got on the Rugby team!' He was very pleased about this, given that he has only been playing rugby for ten days and has been selected as a winger on the A team (especially as the other day I said, 'if you don't get selected, it's not a big deal. Just keep going to practice, you've got years to get on the team,' - oh yeee mother of wrapping-in-cotton-wool-faith).
Jack worked hard for his place on the rugby team. He's been to every practice, almost every day, since the day school started. He has his first match tonight.
This morning we hunted for rugby socks. No sign. The rugby socks have been lost. So we hopped in the car at 8am and arrived at the school gates at 8.10am, school starts at 9.05am. We entered the sports pavillion, heading to the stinky corner, and pulled all the old dirty kit out of a box and searched for socks. It was stuffed full of grubby sportswear, including one Nike trainer.
Then we asked the porter, who had just found a jumper on the playing fields and was presently hanging it out in the morning sun to dry, if he'd seen some socks.
'Come with me,' he said.
We followed him to his special cupboard where he pulled out a basket of odd socks. No sign of our socks.
'I'm not shouting,' I said. 'And there's not a lot of mums that'd get up at this time and drive to school to hunt through lost property to find socks...but ... but think of this, if you lose a pair of socks each week, and they cost £5 a pair, and there are, say, 4.5 weeks per month, how much is that?'
'£22.50,' he said.
'And say you lose socks every week for 12 months of the year?'
'£270,' he gasped. 'That's a lot of money.'
'But not just that,' I said. 'If socks represent 1/100th of our possessions, and so we times that loss by 100, how much is that?'
'£27,000,' he shrieked.
'So if we took a slack approach to all our property we'd be losing £27,000 worth of items a year.'
'That is a lot,' he said.
'Look in your class changing room,' I said.
Jack went down the pavilion corridor to his form changing room, seconds later he walked towards me holding out a blazer, and a school shirt ( total cost £50) belonging to a classmate. 'I'll take these to Josh,' he said. 'And there's a pair of shoes in there too.'
'I bet his mum went bonkers,' I said.
Jack pulled a face as though to say: 'I bet she really did go bonkers if you're this strung out about a pair of socks.'
Shoes! I thought! Shoes! How can any child go to school and then forget to bring his shoes home?! And his blazer?! And his shirt?! Did his mother send him to school naked this morning? Barefoot? Cold?!
'Ask in class if anyone has your socks,' I said. 'Please?'
'I will,' he said.
Then I headed to the school office. I need to pay for a French trip -
'I've lost my cheque book...' I told the French teacher....