Wednesday 27 May 1987

…Lunch today was HORRIBLE.
Chips, cheese pie and tinned tomatoes, followed by strawberry whip.
School dinner are revolting.
Didn’t go to PE because of my cough and my ear but I had to watch instead…

Just as taking part in school sports was no doubt a formative experience for some, not taking part in them had something of a similar influence on me.

Watching others working and playing together while you looked on from a distance, usually by yourself, was something that – perhaps by instinct, perhaps by chance – helped nurture vague feelings of individualism (and isolation, both literal and imagined).

I spent a number of PE lessons as a spectator, not a participant. It came at a point in my life where I guess I was starting to become more conscious of being a bit different and being a bit of a loner. Here, to my vaguely-adolescent eyes, was an example of what such distinctions could and would be like put into practice.

Thankfully I hadn’t yet become too much of an introverted arsehole to not record in my diary a splendidly visceral reaction to today’s school dinner.

The combination of cheese pie and tinned tomatoes makes me feel slightly nauseous even today.


6 thoughts on “Wednesday 27 May 1987

  1. school dinners really were bad. thats why I always took a packed lunch. But on the occasion where I had school lunch it normally had a desert that contained a chocolate brownie and custard. not good Birds yellow custard. but some pink goo that pretended to be strawberry. It was always watered down and had so many artificial things in it that I would have a headache for the rest of the afternoon.

  2. How come your half-term holiday was only two days long? Whistun was surely the big one as well, as it was the only half-term you had childrens’ programmes in the mornings, as opposed to taking your chances with Open Air in February and October.

    My all-time great achievement in getting off PE was when I managed to convince my mum to write a sick note so I didn’t have to do swimming on my brthday.

      • All the state schools in Leicestershire had a massive summer holiday that began at the start of July and ran right through to the end of August. There was some sort of historical precedent for this. I think it dated back to a 19th century tradition for local industry to take a fortnight’s break at the beginning of July. Anyway, to balance the extra time off, all our half-terms were trimmed to last just two days. One consequence of this was that our family never ever went away on holiday at any time of the year save early July.

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