Friday, 13 March 2009

I Am Padgate's Own James Joyce


So I mentioned that some of my old school work was pretty funny. And it is.

I read through some of the stories I had written (up to the age of 16) and most were just hilariously badly written.

I have never really been one for 'creative' writing. I lack ideas and skills. Approx. 84% of the stories ended: 'And then he woke up. It had all been a dream!'

I found a story I had written in Mrs S' class which was essentially a massive rip off of 'The Goonies' - i.e. I somehow found myself stranded on a desert island and was then rescued by my dad in a helicopter and he didn't believe all these adventures I had and scrapes I had gotten into until I found loads of jewels and gold in my pockets. All whilst I had been pursued by the Fratellis.

I found another story I had written about the day an alien came to school. The alien's name? The highly unusual Dennis. This story also featured a character called John Python. For reasons unknown, I laugh out loud each time I even think of that. Python. Haha!

I then re-discovered a story I had written when I was 7 which had me eating an hallucinogenic mushroom, shrinking, talking to a pixie and being pursued by a giant named 'Manhugger'. I had also drawn a picture of Manhugger and he was wearing blue hotpants, and a yellow half-shirt with 'I Am The Manhugger' written on it - just to make it that little bit more latently homosexual.

Some nuggets of gold were lurking amongst the dross. The first one is a poem/weird thing which is actually mounted on cardboard as though, at some point, it formed part of a wall display. The shame:

Jessica Dreamers Fantastic Friends


When I am bored out of my brain,

I call Take That round for a game.

There is Robbie, Mark and Howard,

Gary and Jason were going to come too.

But they had to stay home that night because they had the flu.

We watched the Take That And Party video,

We had a party.

They signed my school shirt then they went away.

What bad luck for the very next day my Mum chucked the shirt away!


This is hilarious on SO many levels. Who the hell is Jessica Dreamer?! That is not my last name. How obsessed with Take That was I?

And could I have made the fact that I did not fancy Gary or Jason any more obvious?

And why would I make Take That watch their own video?

Why would they sign my shirt when I had all their CDs?

Lately I have had Take That on the brain - clearly nothing has changed since I was 10 years old! I have 'Shine' in my head from the all-singing-all-dancing panto finale, I started at least 3 people singing 'Greatest Day' in the kitchen the other day. And I had a dream I was at a Take That concert and I forced my way to the front and started heckling Gary Barlow by shouting that I was 'from near Frodsham' as though that would make him know me.

Then I came across an exercise where we had to interview someone we admired. I chose Walt Disney. I hearted Disney. Still do.


What does Mickey Mouse like to drink?

Does Mickey Mouse ever change his clothes?

What would you put on Donald Duck instead of a sailor suit?

Has Mickey got a teddy bear?

Is Goofy Mickey's best friend?


My 7 year old brain was clearly obsessed with clothes. I have also drawn a picture, to accompany the questions, of Pluto sporting what can only be described as a Hitler moustache.

The best things I have written, however, are all in my news books. Every Monday we would write in our news book what we had done at the weekend. This is some of the most pointlessly detailed, most random, most stream of consciousness writing I have ever read.

On Saturday we played out and we played on the swings and my brother played with the hula hoop and on Sunday we went to our nanas and we watched Care Bears and Thomas The Tank Engine and Postman Pat and we played jumping.

Old school TV right there.

On Wednesday I took J and M to the pictures to see Danny The Champion Of The World and it was funny and pheasants like raisins.

What a review. Move over Roger Ebert.

On Christmas I opened my presents and when I opened my keyboard I said I got a cardboard box. And I got a jigsaw which takes one hour to do. I got Pop Up Pirate from a party but it didn't work so we got another one but that didn't work so we changed it for Ghost Castle.

That party was for E's mum's work - I wasn't even supposed to be there. But still came away with a gift. Result.

On Christmas Day I watched the BFG and I watched Grease 1 it was a story about the Pink Ladies and Thunderbirds and a boy called Danny and a girl called Sandy and I watched Grease 2 a new English boy had started the school and he did not speak American but he liked it and Sandy came to the Pink Ladies house. She drank white wine and loads of lemonade and she ate lots of chocolate biscuits and then Danny came and one of the Pink Ladies climbed out of the window!

Couldn't speak American! Haha! The Thunderbirds? I am getting my TV shows mixed up here. My Roald Dahl obsession is also clearly evident. This is before my mum ruined it for me by explaining her theory that the BFG was actually a paedophile, not a Big Friendly Giant. 'I mean a grown man, going through children's windows at night? You tell me that hasn't got sexual predator written all over it?' I don't even want to hear her thoughts on Willy Wonka.

All about me. My name is Jessica. My eyes are hazel my hair is golden brown I have got some freckles. I live in a house. I used to have a canary but he died on New Years Day 1990. I still have my rabbit. My lunch time club is bookclub. The things that I like to wear the most is a dark blue pinafore and a white blouse. My favourite work at school is Scottish maths. Dear God our father thank you for making me one of your special children. Amen.

The teacher has written 'Amen' underneath this in black pen.
What tha funk? Where did that last sentence come from? I think this was when I was in a class which was taught by someone who was a member of a 'breakaway' church - someone who is actually good friends with my mother to this day so I'd better shut up.

On Sunday I went to The Noggin and we had our dinner. I had mushroom soup and chips. The chips were fifty five pence for a bowl of them. I had some tomato ketchup and a drink of diet pepsi. And that is all I had.

And I breathed in 65 times and I scratched my face 15 times and I blinked 239 times. Seriously, 55p for chips? God damn you inflation! I love how I am just casually reporting the fact we were in a pub when I was about 6 years old. Incidentally, the last time I was in The Noggin was en route to Kelly Clarkson.

For Christmas I would like to get a computer. I would like as well 2 pet mice. I adore mice. I would like a Kylie video as well. I would like a Polly Pocket Disco Cassette Player and a girls world. I would like a cuddly Orville duck. Thats all I would like.

Underneath this the teacher has written 'I hope you get all your wishes' and I have written under that 'I didn't'!
I don't think I got a computer - I don't remember having one that young. Thankfully, I never got any mice. I now hate mice and can't believe I ever liked them. I never got a Polly Pocket tape player - I had tons of other Polly Pocket stuff though. And I SO got a Kylie video. And then for my birthday in Feb, I got a Jason Donovan video. Hell yeah.

Over Christmas I went ice skating with M. We went to Altrincham ice rink. On my first time round I held onto the rail then I did not hold on and I ice skated by myself. I went to the pictures to see Home Alone. C was there as well.

Back when Macauley Culkin had the world at his feet. Sigh.

On Sunday my nana and grandad came to our house. They walked because my grandad needed some exercise because he has got the shingles and just before they got there S came and we played on the go kart and we played hide and seek and then she went home and we went inside to have a game of Cluedo. We got the rabbit out and then we went to the chipshop.

I can provide you with my entire family's medical history if you'd like? And Phina, feel my pain, a documented reference to ST being round at my house. Story of my childhood.

Yesterday we played a game of badminton. I won it was great. Then we went to Texas in town to look for some tiles for the shower. Then it was tea time and we went to the chip shop and then we went home and I watched Watching and The Darling Buds Of May.

Texas? Oh my god! Remember when that store existed?! Now I think it is JJB Sports opposite what was Bar Tempo. The Darling Buds Of May, back when Catherine Zeta Jones was still Welsh. And seemingly, all I did at the weekend was eat chips. Old habits die hard.

On Sunday I went on a picnic with M. We saw chickens and geese and in the trees were some monkeys and chickens and there was two dogs circling around the picnic table. Then we went to an art gallery there were lots of Lowry paintings there.

I doubt there were monkeys in the trees. By the sounds of it we were in Salford, so if there were monkeys in the trees, I am sure they were soon stolen.

On Saturday we went to a pub for dinner. I had cheese sandwiches and chips. Then we went home and then we went to the park and played. On Sunday we played Monopoly and I won. Then I went to the shop and I bought a bar of chocolate. I went home after that.

Chips and chocolate and the pub. I had such a healthy childhood.

For Christmas I got a midi hifi system which plays CDs and tapes. I went to Catalyst which is a museum. It has got a smell machine it was good. I also went ice skating at Altrincham ice rink.

Ah, back when the CD player was cutting edge and only Patrick Bateman in American Psycho had one. I don't remember going ice skating nearly as much as my writing suggests.

On Monday my brother went to see Hook. I said to my mum 'that's not fair' so mum took me into town and bought me some new clothes. The next day E came to play and gave us Easter eggs. They were Cadbury's Creme Eggs. The next day was my piano lesson and the teacher was pleased with me. After we went to the train station to catch a train to town, the train was on time. On Friday I took M to see Hook. We enjoyed it.

Classic parenting, right there. Buy her something to shut her up. Why was I so desperate to see Hook? Though it is classic when that fat kid turns himself into a cannonball. And Rufio. Good to see that I took punctuality seriously back then. Preparing myself for the 2 year commute I endured, no doubt.

2 comments:

Nicola said...

This is brilliant - maybe everyone should have their old school books to hand in case they are in need of a giggle.

Anyway, hate to break it to you but your childhood self didn't come up with "Jessica Dreamer" - it's your own version of "Billy Dreamer's Fantastic Friends" from "Gargling with Jelly" by Brian Patten. I do appluad your imagination in choosing Take That as the subject though... (the original was about the Incredible Hulk coming to tea, if I recall correctly - I knew most of the book off by heart when I was a kid!)

Jessclub7 said...

Thank God I didn't come up with Jessica Dreamer! That makes me feel slightly more normal. Only slightly though.

And I had that book too! Though, clearly you have far superior knowledge of it.