barrier still in place
stir crazy

teenage kicks

I delayed the publication of this very frivolous post but friends on the east coast of the US now seem to be okay. I hope. So, in the spirit of Now For Something Completely Different:

 On my parents' kitchen wall there is a photo of my school hockey team, (or half a team - there were only 5 girls in the class) - now mercifully faded by the sun. I reproduce it here for the purposes of evidence: Hockey_team
Exhibit A

I am that one, in the middle at the back. I am eight or nine in this picture and I am five foot tall.
I also have marmalade-coloured hair, for your further information, and couldn't stand out more if I jumped up and down, singing RAH RAH RAH, look at me, I'm over here.

Fast forward to The Teenage Years. I am now 13, still extra-tall and of the orange mane, and I have done what my rather proper family sees as falling in with The Wrong Crowd. I have a wild friend, who makes it her business to Lead Me Astray. She is in a school called (unbelievable this, but true) Al.exandra College for Young Ladies. I go to a co-ed in another part of town. One day, for some reason which now escapes, we (the co-eds) have the day off while they (the gels) are in school, and for another reason which also flees my adult mind, we decide that the right thing to do here was clearly for me to dress up in her uniform and go to her school with her.

They'll never notice
, she airly declared. Rhino is so ancient (headmistress of the day: Miss Ryan) she doesn't even know us. It'll be fiiine.

So it was that I trooped along with them to Assembly that morning. During which Rhino had a long look at me, not surprisingly, perhaps confused by this apparition. Who IS that? Am I meant to know that child? Maybe I am losing my marbles. But who would..? ..and why?
Yes, well. There are no answers.

If I remember well, we nipped out of Assembly before poor Rhino's brain could catch up, and legged it to Science. There I was, an intruder into Science, in my borrowed brown uniform. In Al.exandra College for Young Ladies. Ah, yes. Teenage Kicks might have been written for moments such as these.

The fortunately young and very decent science teacher (Miss Poole!) was, naturally enough, somewhat perplexed to have a new member of the class just sort of suddenly there. As we were explaining to her what we were up to, another more senior teacher came in to survey the class crossly - presumably not able to believe what she thought she'd seen at Assembly - But, how peculiar! There can't be? Can there?

Oh, there can, and there be.

Miss Poole, showing admirable presence of mind, quickly hid me underneath the desk. Bless you, Miss. And after Science, it was deemed by My Wild Friend best to maybe.. just sort of.. bunk for the rest of the day? And so it was that I found myself hiding in the outside changing rooms, bunking off (someone else's) school. On my day off.


[Teenage stories welcome. Mad or not.]



You must have been the good child - there is no way I would have found it amusing (and I even LOVED school) to dress up and sneak into another school on my day off. Although, looking as I look (short, and with a face that everyone thinks they know from somewhere), I would have blended right in and no one would ever have noticed.

Miss Poole sounds like a very good teacher!

The worst thing I did as a teenager...hmmm...well, my parents were out of town, and I told my two older sisters (23 and 24 at the time, I think, who were supposed to be "watching" me, but always failed at that job)that I was staying at my friend's house. In reality, another friend and I drove 4 hours to another state to visit a boy at a college. I believe my nephew may be attending that school next year. Hmmm.


I love this story, because the exploit is definitely naughty and subversive, and rather dashing, but also completely harmless and funny. Right now I can clearly envision an acclaimed graphic novel of your entire childhood and adolescence.


'Oh, there can, and there be'! How fabulous! I was far, far too conformist during childhood, OBVIOUSLY.


a - that IS bold! I am impressed! Ooh.

Thanks Nellig, I never thought of that. Also, welcome!

Nuh-uh! You are far cooler than I, HFF. Indeed, I forgot to say, I did quickly revert to complete squaritude, my natural position, after that year or two of living dangerously. The friend got interested in boys and cigarettes and I was Not Ready for that Sort of Thing. Hardly am now, come to think of it. :-)

Womb For Improvement

I was a very good kid. As such when my friends and I (the majority of which ended up at Oxbridge so you know, were those good talented young ladies) did break the law no one ever dreamed it was us.

In a slightly similar vein to your story on the last day of the summer term at our Girl's boarding school we'd have a prize giving and cream tea when all the parents came, dressed up, to see what the Jones' were doing this year. We, pixel by pixel, recreated the school logo on an Apple Macintosh as they were known back in the 90s. We then printed out posters which we stuck up round town declaring an open day at the school, Everyone Welcome!!

The reality wasn't as amusing as we hoped as we saw awkward looking locals wandering in and being ushered away by harassed staff.

They never guessed it was us though.


This made me laugh quite a bit. One conclusion I draw: the world needs many more Ms. Pooles. It would be a much, much better place.

My shining moment came at the age of twelve, just shy of the teenage years. I hated school. I hated school more than...well, just about anything. And so one day I convinced a friend that we should throw ourselves into a poison ivy patch because SURELY our mothers would keep us home if we were covered in masses of blisters and welts. The most insane part of this - I'd had poison ivy before and knew that I was extremely allergic to it.

(It was worth it, though. At least to the twelve-year-old me.)


Gah! Poison ivy! We don't have that, here but it always sounds dreadful.

Glad to hear I am not alone in the insanity, W4I and Adele.


This is an excellent story. I had many exploits as a young person, but none of them really have a nice narrative arc. Hmmm.... *rifles through archives*...Once my best friend and I were desperate for pancakes, but had no ingredients or money, so we STOLE 1) an egg and 2) some blackberry syrup. I had a great big black cloak with a special shoplifting pocket. Not that I did a lot of shoplifting.

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