Wiffle Lever To Full!

Daleks, Death Stars and Dreamy Sci-Fi Nostalgia…

Extracts from Bob’s 1984 Diary… Volume 258

Friday 14th September 1984

Woke up at 7.40 and got up at 8.15. At 8.30 Doug came and we went to school. First we had double PE, and played Basketball, then we had French. After that we had Geog, and I got a merit, then at 12.00 I had dinner.

Then we had maths and music. After that we had science, and I got a merit. At 3.40 I came home and did homework till tea at 5.00. Then we went to the library and when we came back I did some more homework.

At 7.00 I watched Blankety Blank, then I did homework till Babble at 9.00. Went to bed at 9.30.

CLOSURE AT LAST!!! For the last two decades, I’ve been regularly waking up in a cold sweat at 4.30am, tortured by the knowledge that I’d completely forgotten the date upon which I first learnt the word ‘Meniscus’. But now, at last, my torment is at an end!

I like my sinister cartoon all-seeing eye.

I’d forgotten that we spent much of this first term playing basketball as part of our PE lessons, our nasty outdoor activities being broken up by some, erm, equally nasty indoor activites. We sulkily changed into our gym whites and white sandshoes (NO OUTDOOR SHOES OR BLACK SOLES BEYOND THIS POINT) before trooping into Conyers’ cavernous ‘Sports Hall’… a windowless brick arena with a fifty-foot ceiling that increased every discreet squeaky fart and muffled obscenity by forty decibels, as well as dowsing them with a wash of early Elvis-style reverb. 

No basketball lesson was complete without some hapless sap breaking a big toe attempting to crack a four-tonne orange basketball with a spectacular right-footed volley, or without the same melon-sized ball being spun hopelessly around on half-a-dozen index fingers while a meandering version of ‘Sweet Georgia Brown’ was tunelessly whistled…

Needless to say, I was crap at basketball. My attempts at doing the essential ‘crouch and dribble’ movement never failed to resemble a rheumatic Groucho Marx, and my attempts at shooting for the net drove poor Mr Anderson to the brink of a nervous breakdown. ‘Don’t aim for the net, aim for the corner of the square… hit that, and the ball should drop in… just about finding the correct angle… that’s it… get your eye in… and shoot… and…. oh, bloody hell’.

Cows take note: Bob Fischer owns a banjo, but at no point are your arses about to be placed in serious danger.

I’ve had a good rummage through my schoolbooks, and can’t find any evidence of homework being done on this date, so I’m not entirely sure what I’m claiming to have worked on for nearly three hours during this particular evening. Whatever it was, it clearly still had to stop in time for Blankety Blank…

I’d love to see a modern TV game show that contains the line ‘This is for a Jesuit’s widow in Northampton who stands in hot Horlick’s every Christmas morning’. It would liven up Eggheads no end.


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