Funny Old World, — November 24, 2009 13:38 — 0 Comments

Hectoring Master: eejit’s guide



(Interactive session in which I act with the authoritarian, bullying, whimsical style of 1950s schoolmaster who looks at ceiling most of time) …

Master: (pronounces all his ‘ing’s) Well boys and girls, I wonder if you were listening!… 


More importantly, I wonder if you remember what I said. Is it going in one ear and out the other? Am I wasting my breath? Boy, what’s your name? (perhaps derogatory comment on the name, ‘betrayed the Irish army in 1453 – you have nothing to be proud about – English planters who came over to subjugate us – didn’t work, did it… Rhymes with… whatever ..)


Your family’s greatest claim to fame in Irish history was that they were allowed to milk the cows for the O’Neill clan… Dilly-dally Daly) Were you listening…? Yes what? – yes, Master!). 


I think I’ll give you all an examination to test you. Class, why will I give you an examination..? To test us … what…?




*Stop fiddling with that, give it to me…


*Excuse me, are you talking?… and what, may I ask, is so urgent and important that it must interrupt my teaching – please stand up and tell the class what you were talking about… Repeat after me, I must not be a chatterbox in class… And write it out 300 times for tomorrow.


No, this the year 1950  – write it out 1950 times! Class, how many times will (s)he write it out?…


*Oh, we have a funny pupil here? (Heckler – stand up, what’s your name. Not a name to be proud of – betrayed Ireland in 1453. Be quiet ..


 Or.. Please repeat your remark. 


And why do you think that is funny? You have a warped sense of humour. Sit down and be ashamed of yourself.


Now, the examination..


Question 1 is about Cuchullen. What does this remind you of? (show hound figure with your hand, the thumb like a mouth opening and closing) Think again, the answer is not always the first or most obvious one. 


(If funny remark, make stand up and repeat, then, sit down.)


Well, very interesting, the answer is ‘a hound’ of course, but I wanted to see how many waverers there were. You are all waverers. Exactly what I expected!


Question 2.  Why did the serpent tempt Eve to tempt Adam to steal the apple? 


And I will give you a clue. 


What will I give you, class?


 A clue, what? 


A clue, Master!


And the clue is – the serpent tempted Eve to tempt Adam to steal the apple because it was a Loughgall… 


Bramley, Good – who gave me the correct answer? 


Ah, you surprise me – after years of getting things wrong you have a correct answer at last, come up for your reward. Now which would you prefer, a sweet or 20p? A poor choice, I must say – do you think I throw money away? But, you may be lucky – which hand is the 20p in? 


(delay for changing hands, then show sweet and money in other hand)


Sorry, better luck next time, sit down.


Question 3.  Why was there a sparkle in God’s eye when he created Ireland?


Child, you have given me an incorrect answer, but it is a sweet answer. Now, I do not have any pets in this class, but it is obvious that you pay attention and are making an effort. – and that you come from a good family. 


If I didn’t know your father was a doctor, I think I could guess it.


Someone else? Boy/Miss, If I were you, I would leave school – you are ineducable. Have I a class of idiots?


The answer is that we do not know why there was a sparkle in God’s eye, it is a mystery, you little fools, do not try to understand the mind of God!


Question 4. Why did the Celts take off their clothes going into battle?


What is your name?.. — Famous for milking cows for O’Neills – I think, young lady, history is not your forte – you should stick to milking cows like your ancestors. 


Oh, a prophet has spoken – Reilly has spoken in his sleep. Go back to sleep, boy, you know nothing. Not at all. It’s quite obvious why they took off their clothes. The Celts took off their clothes because they were considerate to their women folk.


Would you like your man to come home from battle with torn or blood-stained clothes – that would show little consideration for the poor women who did not exactly have washing machines in those days.


Sit down..


Last Question: An easy one.


Who converted Ireland to Christianity? 


Look around you, young lady/man. What is it about the way people live that gives you the impression we are living in a Christian country? No one converted Ireland to Christianity. It has never been done, and I’m not surprised dealing with you lot. 


God give me patience with you – you do not deserve to be receiving this excellent education. Class dismissed!


 (Normal voice) OK, maybe I’ve made a point about the bewildering school system many of us experienced.. (bow)


… more later …

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