There is, of course, a reason I gave up teaching, although I still maintain that the sentence handed down was a bit harsh. Those of you with access to the interwobble can look up the details for yourselves on the Norn Iron Legal Archive, if youse are that nosey.
I never gave up on education, though. Specifically, education of myself. There are those of my acquaintance who would dispute this, citing the oft-quoted criticism directed at anyone with more than the usual one brain cell in daily operation that I think I know it all already. But, sure, what would they know? (I know what I did there, even if no one else does. And again there.) Not a day goes by without my learning something new, or, at least, relearning something I had nearly forgotten. Sometimes I envy other people’s ability to forget things. Part-Time Wife, for example, just one day after what she terms “a tidying spree” will not have the faintest idea as to where she has tidied my essential equipment away to. Not one clue. In fact, ofttimes, she will even forget that she did any tidying at all, and will, manfully, attempt to blame me on the fact that whatever I am searching for is missing on the grounds that I “just leave everything all over the place and make a whole mess of the place”. Nothing, dear Reader, could be further from the truth. (Except maybe the British Government’s attempts to explain that they made a success of dealing with the Kerfuffle because the National Health System was not overwhelmed. Here’s a hint lads: the system was not overwhelmed because you kept around 48.7% of those who had covidnovid locked up and dying in care homes; had you let them out to access medical treatment, your system would have been overwhelmed.) Admittedly my filing system is intricate, and incomprehensible to anyone who is not me, but that does not mean that it is without system. And, sometimes, I deliberately leave items in places where they will “get in the road” as a reminder to myself that I have to do something with that item later on after I do all the other things that I have to do later on.
As for Part-Time Wife’s system, well, ‘system’ is stretching it a bit. She still has not grasped the basic operation of my sock drawer and how the entrants should be filed alphabetically by colour, and preferably matched to each other. But I live in hope, and maybe one morning I shall wake up and not have to let a gulder out of me upon discovering, yet again, that both the sock drawer (a wicker basket, actually) and the knickers drawer are devoid of occupants. I mean, does she think these essential items of underwear just wash themselves, or something? She will occasionally gulder back that some examples of said items are to be found in the airing cupboard, wherever that is. But, I put it to you, your Honour, what good is that to me standing bollock naked in the mezzanine area of the central atrium at stupid o’clock in the morning? What if the teenagers were to crawl out of their caves at that time seeking sugar and see their alleged father standing there with things dangling over the banister? I would be back in court as soon as they had speed-dialed Childline on their mobile phones. Why they have Childline on speed-dial is another mystery worth investigating, but I blame the primary school.
Speaking of schools [were you? – Ed.], I was up earlier than usual this morning to check out how the whole virtual classroom thing is working out with the two male teenagers. (The Marines sent them back, by the way, with a terse note stating that they were both underage, but that the haircuts were acceptable.) Fair play to them both, they are doing the absolute minimum, or approximately 19.6% of the work their schools are virtually sending them, which is about as much as I would do were I in their situation. To summarise, their situation is this: one of them will not be sitting official state examinations this Summer but will be given makey-up results instead which will count as real qualifications in someone’s idea of the real world; the other one is just finishing off First Year and about to forget over the Summer everything he has learned this year, and if his school even thinks about sending him Summer exams over the interwobble, they will find that the wifi connection has suddenly gone down that month in the hacienda. Anyway, they will learn more hanging about with me than they will avoiding classwork while staring at a screen. Because, previous convictions and barrings notwithstanding, it appears that I am once again a teacher, and supposed to be engaged in an activity known as home schooling. I did not apply for this position, do not even recall its being advertised and, thus, treat my “duties” in respect to same with the disdain they deserve.
Someone needs to tell the schools and the department of education this: school’s out for Summer! And maybe forever, if you persist in this nonsense of trying to get teenagers to do work when there is no compulsion for them to do it. Good luck with that! And, remember, they do not require education, anyway: they have got life out there outside their caves; all they need is the correct attitude and they could educate themselves.
Like wot I done.