Monday, October 29

Playground madness

Drama and excitement aplenty in East London today. I was sitting in the staff-room, merrily eating my pasta salad when I heard an enormous bang from the direction of the playground, accompanied by a few screams. 'Oh it's just some youth out in the street with an air rifle', I thought casually, and continued to consume my food with aplomb. None of the other teachers had even heard the noise, and if they had then they certainly weren't exhibiting outward concern. They have more experience of these things than I, so I deferred to their wisdom and ignored alongside them. Until another, much louder bang, accompanied by more frantic screaming. We all rushed to the window and pressed our faces against it like children eagerly witnessing the winter's first snowfall. What could possibly be the cause of all this noise?

No, it wasn't a gun (but I wouldn't blame you for guessing that). It was a couple of scallywags sat on a roof, chucking fireworks into the playground. Several teachers had run outside by now, and were behaving like a bunch of brooding chickens when they catch a whiff of a fox outside their pen. Their futile and panicked attempts at herding the children inside were laughable. Cluck-cluck-cluck. BANG! Cluck-cluck-cluck. Wheeeeeeeeeeee... BANG! What clever little criminals our pesky pyromaniacs were, climbing to a perfect vantage point enabling them to pick off children in the playground like tin cans at a shooting range, a vantage point that also offered the protection of a 10 foot high wire fence. I can see them early this morning (0600 hours), with scale models of the school buildings, pointing at possible obstacles with the aid of a stick. It was all just so fucking perfect. Who could possibly challenge their exploding missiles?

Poor, poor powerless teachers, who could do so little. All they could do was, slowly, get all the children inside the school amid a shower of rockets and call the police. I can imagine their blood burning, Yosemite Sam style, at the evil child genii that had defeated them. How could they? They probably haven't even got any GCSEs!!! Obviously it was extremely dangerous and irresponsible, but the whole episode had a simplistic beauty about it. The fact that a couple of kids in scruffy parkas could create such chaos among a school of over a thousand kids in just under five minutes was completely mesmerising.

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