"And he commanded the multitude to sit down"

Friday 6 November 2009

It wasn't the teeniest tiniest bit like this today.

So Freddie's class delivered Assembly this morning; full Junior School attendance, plus parents perched on a row of titchy chairs at the back of the hall. Brilliantly, it is us naughty grown-ups that fidget and whisper the most, pathetically regressing to a time when we ourselves sat cross-legged, shiny-shoed and navy-blazered in serried ranks on the floor.

I think they did the parable of the loaves and fishes, but there was a lot of mumbling from the readers so I could have got that wrong. They have a shiny-arsed new drama teacher this year, who is about sixteen and was wearing very tight trousers. The Daddies listened with unheard-of attention as she explained this was going to be a special assembly and that we were all going to be moving around. There's nowhere to hide when you're one of the parents, so we had to smile in delight rather than sink further down in English silence. There's nothing more guaranteed to clear a room than the mention of God to a Protestant Englishman. You could feel the fear. 'Oh no.' 'Please, don't make me stand up.' 'Bloody hell, if there's any shaking or speaking in tongues, I'm off.' Brilliant. Even the Head looked horrified, though I think that was more on grounds of Potential Untidiness than fear of spiritual choirs and kissing.

A gaggle of them then charged through the swing doors into the hall, dressed in stripy shepherd get-ups and Miss Drama shouted at everyone to 'FOLLOW JESUS!' The parents remained, rictus grins, glued to the tiny chairs; the teachers shuffled blushingly about in arm-folded groups and two hundred seven- to eleven-year-olds, eyes shining in feral glee, bombed about the parquet, boys intent on pushing each other over, girls squealing and spinning about. I think one of the stripy ones was supposed to be Jesus, but it was impossible to tell. It was complete carnage, the stripy ones chucking paper fishes and loaves about hysterically, a complete scrum free-for-all from the blazered ones. We were laughing our heads off at the back, NOT very helpful.

Eventually, the shout went up 'Sit DOWN, School!' and the Head hastily thanked Year Five for a very illuminating and special assembly and moved quickly on to Hymn 362.

Bloody marvellous start to my day, especially as I then drove to work past Starbucks. I landed in the office with three large skinny lattes and two almond croissants. My very own modern-day parable.


  1. One always has to wonder. Follow him where?

  2. That was so much fun! I loved my daughter's school days, especially the all-girl Catholic high school - that was her favorite. Thanks for a bloody great start to my day!

  3. LPC - in this case, in ever-decreasing circles.

    Anon - Oh, thank you. I've been feeling a bit giggly and giddy all day - the pleasure is all mine.

  4. "shiny-arsed"? I am now thoroughly convinced that English can truly describe every nuance of the human condition. Thank you!
    I think we are all going to enjoy your giggly and giddy days.

  5. It implies spanking brand new and just a bit too eager.
    Thank you, I certainly did today!!
    Have a wonderful weekend


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