Tag Archives: economics

March 11th 1975

“Got elected onto committee. Passed Economics O-Level. packed up Vivienne”

What a day……..

Barton Peveril had a Sixth Form society – colloquially known as the “Coffee Club” – responsible for arranging the entertainment aspects of the students.

With the year-end exams looming – well 3 months distant – I suppose it felt prudent for the college to induct the new organising committee in advance of the 2nd year 6th students hunkering down to their (supposedly more important) educational matters?

I originally ran for President of the society, drawing up ‘vote for me’ posters based on famous album sleeves (one was based on David Bowie’s “Aladdin Sane” cover, with the tagline “A Lad Insane Enough to be running for President“) and gave a speech on stage during which time I tried to bribe the audience (voters) by tossing blackjacks and fruit salads (popular 4-for-a-penny sweets of the time made by Bassetts) into the crowd.

My competitor was a certain John Sweeney, a name who media fanatics may recognise as someone who worked for the Guardian newspaper before becoming one of the BBC’s top investigative journalists.

Other people may recognise him as the unfortunate reporter who – somewhat fired up – went apeshit ballistic on Tommy Davis, a representative of the Church of Scientology during a BBC “Panorama” documentary about the odious religious cult.

A piece of television history that went ‘viral’ (as they say in internet speak) attracting squillions of online hits.

John Sweeney, trying to look happier

Anyway, back to the election…. John was blessed with an ‘actor’s voice’ and thus gave a pleasing oratory to the hundreds of students hanging on his every word. I then followed him in my ‘Ampshire ‘Og accent with a speech packed with jokes rather than any substance. (I was, if you like, the Palin to his Obama)

Votes were duly cast…. and as I state somewhere else on the internet, “John Sweeney prevailed. He went on to present programmes for the BBC, and I went on to watch them

By way of a runners-up prize I was offered a place on the organising committee. My good friends Nobby, Niles, Tony & Nigel all ended up with representative nods too, so it looked like a fun time was ahead…

However, it appears it’s all over for me and the illustrious Vivienne? I have “packed her up” apparently. Maybe it became the case that I got glandular fever from her, but precious little else? Ouch!!

Oh, and there’s confirmation that I nabbed another GCE O-Level.

Advertisement

Leave a comment

Filed under 1975 Diary Entries

January 20th 1975

“Economics ‘O’ level retake”

Regular EFA70sTRO readers will recall that I pretty much crashed and burned in my GCE O-Levels back in August 1974.

Amongst the subject I failed at was Economics.

Seems like I was allowed to retake it?

How would I fare this time?

I don’t think my diary ever reports it so I will ease your intense unrelenting curiosity to inform you that…

I passed!

(OK, with another infernal ‘E’ grade…. but hey, it was still a pass!)

Leave a comment

Filed under 1975 Diary Entries

August 20th 1974

“Got 5 ‘O’s including Spok. English”


Let’s review these results shall we?…..

Economics: Grade F FAIL
E.Lit. Syll.B: Grade E PASS (English Literature Syllabus B)
Physics: Grade F FAIL
Eng. Language: Grade E PASS (English Language)
Geography: Grade F FAIL
Rel.Studies: F FAIL (Religious Studies)
Spok. English: C PASS (Spoken English)
History: E PASS
Tech. Drawing: E PASS (Technical Drawing)

The back of the actual certificate (shown below) states “Attainment in an Ordinary level subject is indicated by a Grade A, B, C, D, or E of which Grade A is the highest and Grade E the lowest……. Grade E is the lowest level of attainment judged by the University to be of sufficient standard to be recorded

I think it’s fair to admit I was…. a somewhat less than an average student who somehow managed to barely SQUEAK by in some of these important examinations. It feels astonishing to me now that I could apply myself quite admirably the year earlier and take/pass Mathematics quite easily (albeit also with an “E PASS” grade) but then when the rest came around I was phenomenally sloppy and without any personal application.

I’m surprised in retrospect that I failed Economics (it being something I dealt with quite successfully later in my career) and amazed that I completely stumbled in Physics when, just 2 years earlier, I was flying high in the subject and was first in my class.

No surprises regarding Geography (my wife is nodding her head as I type) or Religious Studies. I don’t think the *ahem* things I was ‘studying’ during my church retreats were necessarily likely to turn up on the exam paper?

I’m afraid I can only be flippant about all of this 36 years after the event. I can’t be convinced that passing more of these O-Levels would have changed my life that much so there’s no point in being regretful after the event is there?

In a nutshell I seemed to adopt ‘slackerdom’ at an early age?!

2 Comments

Filed under 1974 Diary Entries

January 21st 1974

“Economics -> Hard” / “Geog (Europe World) -> Hard”

The mocks continue to mock me back!

Leave a comment

Filed under 1974 Diary Entries

June 20th 1973

“Economics <- Easy. T.D.1 <- Hard! – Went up Nigs + write stupid, idiotic, moronic letter to Sue”

Yes, I have usually found things to do with money – i.e. Economics – simple to understand. I’m pretty good with numbers and I’m a better ‘economist’ than I often give myself credit for these days, managing to strike the best balance of spend and thrift as well as hunting down the right bargains etc. I’ve always believed in the old adage that if you look after the pennies, the pounds/dollars will often look after themselves, and so I hate unnecessary costs, waste and/or the feeling of being ripped off.

TD – or Technical Drawing – was quite a hard subject to take but it felt related to my artistic side. There was a point in my life when I imagined being an architect or designer, but I suspect my aptitude for the subject told a different story.

My Tech Drawing lessons have however stayed with me – for life –  thanks to one simple day-to-day reason. Back then, we were taught to write any lettering with a ruler as a guide. This kept the text neat and tidy around the illustrations. As a result of that I find it VERY difficult to write anything completely freehand without it looking like a dog’s half-eaten dinner. I almost always have to write using a ruler or some kind of straight edge – even envelopes and fill-in forms etc. It’s now the only way my writing looks ‘grown-up’ (even if the process isn’t)

The downside to this is I unfortunately taught my wife the same skill after we met. She used to have nice flowing, easily readable, handwriting. Now, when you add a ruler to her mix, her it sometimes turns out pretty illegible. I have never forgiven myself.

I wonder if I used a ruler for the letter to Sue in the evening? If it was that stupid, idiotic and moronic, why didn’t I later sell it to the Farrelly brothers to turn into a hit Hollywood movie? Dashed opportunities again!

Leave a comment

Filed under 1973 Diary Entries

The 1973 Diary (II)

This shows how hard I worked as a 15-year-old schoolkid!

Here’s my school timetable, at least (presumably) for January – July 1973. (The diary makes no reference to a timetable from Sept 1973 onwards… maybe it was the same schedule?)

I had Economics (as in ‘world financials’, not ‘home economics’ and all that cookery nonsense) to kick off the week, followed by Religious Education (ha!) and English Composition after the break. Monday afternoon was History, French, Physics and Maths.

Tuesday morning consisted of a double period of Technical Drawing (TD), Geography and (the dreaded) Gym, whilst the afternoon offered up (more) Geography, French, English and History. (I have no idea why the two Geog lessons of the day weren’t twinned together)

Wednesday commenced with French (“quelle horreur”) followed by Grography (again??), SINGING (!!!???!!!) and Maths and after lunch I was subjected to English Drama, History and a double TD.

SINGING?????????????????

Thursday started off BAD for me with double Games (outdoor physical nonsense like football, hockey, basketball, running, cross-country leg tiring) with Physics and French after the morning break. The afternoon threatened double Maths and double English.

My Fridays were top and tailed with double Economics and double Physics with French, Maths, History and Geography in between.

The one thing I really CAN’T remember is that the timetable suggests we had preset evenings for specific homework. The nights don’t even seem to always line up with next day lessons, so what was the point I wonder?

SINGING?????????????????

2 Comments

Filed under 1973 Diary Entries, 1973 Diary Introduction