Monthly Archives: October 2008

January 15th 1973

“Found out that I’d got 26/60 right in multiple choice. Calculated that this was 48.3 recurring %”

Do you detect a certain element of irony in today’s diary entry regarding the results of my mock Maths O-Level?

Bloody smart-arse

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January 14th 1973

“Large amount of swotting done” / “Backs to TIBS, Val not there” / “Got letter about weekend at vicarage”

I think there’s a second part to the Maths mock coming, hence the “large amount of swotting

It’s becoming embarrassingly clear that “Val” may be the very reason I continued to go to the TIBS meetings?

With regards to the upcoming vicarage weekend, regular readers may remember what happened in May 1972.


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January 13th 1973

“City 3 Stoke 2” / “Actually got my berfday money from Dad – went into Eastleigh – bort shirt, pyjamas, socks” / “Gave ticket to Steve B to sell” / “Gonna put quid in Halifax”

I feel somewhat embarrassed about the comment “actually got my berfday money from Dad” as it suggests that I was somehow forced to wait for it. Maybe Dad had to wait until he got paid before he was able to treat me? Whatever the reason it does make me appear awfully ungrateful.

However, knee deep in funds I went on an “apparel spree” in Eastleigh.

Life so evidently ‘fascinating’ for this muppet-of-a-15-year-old that I felt it necessary to document the fact that I bought….. socks??!!!

quid in halifax” refers to my early habit – and a good one – of saving money in a Building Society account. I’m happy that Dad always tried to steer me right back in these times and am grateful for the fact that, years later, my savings and investments all stem from his very simple notion of NOT spending everything that I earned or was given. Over the years I have always maintained a healthy balance between consuming and savings, careful to only buy things that I feel I can afford.

I bet at 15 though, I also viewed that quid as “almost an album”

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January 12th 1972

“Stayed home again – boring all day stuck in bed with cold (Flu’s gone home – heh-heh)”

Good lord…. a smutty joke!

I bet Benny Hill was worried.

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January 11th 1973

“Didn’t go to school – stayed home in bed with flu” / “Wasn’t allowed to watch Monty Python” / “Arguverge”

Wow, that maths exam must have REALLY got to me?!

I’ve never suffered illness very well, and certainly not if it means I have to lay in bed feeling like crap.

I suppose this could have been a genuine illness rather than some kind of post-exam stress disorder?

Whatever it was, I was evidently not permitted to watch Python – probably as a result of creating an argument between Mum & Dad. *sigh*

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January 10th 1973

“1st Maths Mock O’level – multiple guess choice – VERY HARD!” / “Decided to buy Moving Waves by Focus by selling ticket” / “I think I have got the flu – have got very bad frote”

Ah, that was why I was doing all that swotting!

I think I have already said that I had been chosen as one of the BP pupils who was going to be permitted to take their maths O-level exam a year early.

In order to take the O-level proper in June, I first had to be pre-tested in the January “mock exams”. In these, we were given examples of previous tests, after which we were, presumably (but I can’t be certain) educated further in whatever areas we fell short.

Of course, it may also have been the case that anyone who failed the mocks were then NOT allowed to take the real thing. (You’ve guessed it, it can’t remember)

It would seem that the multiple choice paper was somewhat on the difficult side?

Maybe that’s why, later, my ‘fear of failure’ materialised into the flu?

In other news – potentially more important for the 15-year-old me – it looks like a new slab of 12″ vinyl was in my future?!

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January 9th 1973

“Hard amount of revision on maths done (phew!)” / “History book saga is still continuing” / “Found out that Focus concert don’t end until 1 o’clock – gonna flog ticket”

Q: What the difference between a boy of 15 and a man of 50 regarding not wanting to stay out at a rock concert until 1a.m.

A: Nothing

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January 8th 1972

“Bak to school!” / “Mystery of missing history book continues – saga still not solved. Had to fork out for another history book” / “Revision – Maths”

What an ugly diary entry.

Back to school indeed, and with a vengeance it would seem?

Maths revision and a missing history book. As I remember it, we were given most of our text books at the beginning of each school year, but that if we lost them we had to buy a new one from the supply office.

A fair enough compromise I suppose and much better than, as I understand it, the current US system where parents/pupils are responsible for not only buying their text books but ALL their school supplies (writing pads, pens, etc etc) every year. Given that even though we are childless, over 85% of our local property taxes go to pay for our school system here

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