I thought that I would have a go at writing a monologue. What do you think?
“Come in, come in. Welcome to Hill View High, or as we like to call it, ‘Hell View High’. It’s Peter, isn’t it, how has your first morning been? No trouble I hope. The kids here can be hard work, especially that low set 5K. Don’t tell me they gave you that lot for your first lesson! Typical of the senior leadership in this school. They haven’t a clue about what happens at the chalk face. Anyway enough about all that, tell me about yourself. Do you know I can still remember my first day teaching, must be nearly thirty years ago now. Mind you in those days there was a lot more respect, both from the kids and the parents, the kids knew who was the boss and those that didn’t quickly learnt after a good whack round the ear. Nowadays they like to tell us what we can and cannot do to them, and as for the parents, well best you don’t get me started on that.
Any way, enough about me, tell me a bit about yourself. Joined the history department I hear. They’re not a bad lot really. Old Peter Smith, head of Department, is a bit past his sell by date, but harmless enough. A word to the wise, keep your eye on that Tomkins fellow. Thinks too much of himself if you ask me. I reckon he’s got his eye on old Peter’s job and a place on the senior management team. The way he licks their boots is undignified.
Any way, enough about that lot, tell me about yourself. I’m John, by the way, I used to teach geography, not that any of that shower out there are really interested. Seem to think that all you need nowadays is a sat nav and all your troubles are over. To be honest with you I’m just filling in time. Hoping to retire in two years and I can’t wait to get out.
Let’s get a drink and you can tell me all about yourself. No, not that mug! Normally it wouldn’t matter but that mug belongs to that Abbot woman. Charlene Abbott, part of the English department, nasty piece of work. She seems to think that we are all as common as muck around here. Should have been here the last time someone had the ‘audacity’ to use ‘her mug’. I didn’t think a woman, supposedly as cultured as she is, knew such words. Try that mug, that’s right, the one with the chips around the handle and the writing on saying, ‘My Favourite Teacher’, it’s OK to use that one. Nobody else does due to the fact that Percy Carruthers, dead now, used it for two years to keep his spare set of false teeth in. Don’t worry though, it’s been soaking in bleach for months now. It will be fine.
Anyway, now that you’ve got a drink, let’s find a seat and you can tell me all about yourself. Not that chair! Sorry, normally it doesn’t matter what chair you sit in but that one’s mine. I know it sounds silly but I’ve been sitting in that chair for 20 years now. I’d find anywhere else uncomfortable especially with my medical condition, you know what I mean. Here take this chair. Nobody really likes to sit in that one, they think it’s unlucky. It started when we found old Bill Turner dead in it one Monday morning. According to the autopsy results he died of a heart attack some time on the Friday morning. Everybody remembers seeing him there with a copy of the Telegraph across his face, a bit like most days. We all assumed he was asleep, as normal. It was only when young Anderson asked if he could borrow the paper Monday lunchtime to check the football results that we discovered anything was wrong. Nobody like to use the chair after that. Miss Peter’s was the last one to sit in it. Shortly afterwards she found herself pregnant. Apparently, so the story goes, she got drunk at the staff Christmas ‘do’ and had a wild, one-night fling with the caretaker. She’s on maternity leave at the moment. She was supposed to be getting married this month but that’s all been scuppered. As for the caretaker, old Fred, we didn’t know he had it in him. Any way he seems to have disappeared. No one has seen him since the news was announced. I did hear that his wife, a rather large and somewhat ferocious lady, was not very happy when she found out and set about him. Apparently he has only just got out of hospital and still needs crutches to get around. Doubt if we’ll ever see him back here.
Now tell me about yourself …… oh there’s the bell. These breaks seem to get shorter and shorter and you’ve not touched your tea. Where are you next? What did you say, 4M? Those evil senior staff certainly seem to have got it in for you. But don’t worry, I understand young Jenkins has calmed down a lot since that last incident. Daniel Peterson, teaches maths, wanted to involve the police but the school managed to persuade him that it would not be in his or the school’s interests to do so. What’s more we had heard on the grapevine that Mr Jenkins had recently been released from prison and we all remember what happened last time his son was in trouble at school, such an unpleasant scene. It took us days to clear up the mess and there are still spots of blood on the wall that we can’t shift.
Anyway, you’d better be off. I’ve enjoyed our chat, must do it again sometime. If you’ve got any questions or need any help then I’m probably the last person you will want to speak to. I’ve got enough problems of my own without taking on someone else’s. But if you fancy a quick pint after school, then I’m your man. You’ll need to be quick though, I try to get out of here as soon as I can each day. I’ve been known to be out of those school gates before the kids some days. If you miss me though I can always be found in the Flying Fox, just down the road, most days. I’d be more than happy to let you buy me a drink.
What’s that you say, have I got a class to go to? Oh no, don’t be silly, I don’t teach! I’m the Headteacher.”