'Also remembered was a John Bull printing set. Comprising of a small much prized tin containing: inkpad and two sets of rubber letters. The complete alphabet, one set being capitals, a small wooden block and a small pair of tweezers to handle the individual letters. Considering every word and sentence had to be set out backwards it was a wonder we persevered, though printing out rude words in private was an education few adults had reckoned on.
Concerning rude words I well remember discovering at school the word twat. Thus virtually every sentence was punctuated with the word, ‘twat this’ and ‘twat that’ until I made the mistake of uttering such ill chosen utterances in front of adults, in my case Aunty Mary. I was made to understand in no uncertain terms that such words had no place in God fearing households. Strangely enough no attempt was made as to why such words were taboo. The result, the words gained a new prominence, to be uttered now on away from adult ears. I must have been around eight years old at the time.'
This extract was taken from my e-book A Childhood Revisited. I was, as indicated a mere child of around eight at the time. Then I gradually grew up! I still swear at times, I am not particularly proud of it, it is generally selective and on occasion it can be effective I reckon. But I would not dream of swearing in front of a lady or children.
I used to teach English for a living in a large, very average comprehensive. IF a child swore in class I used to 'jump' on it quickly and point out that I didn't swear in class, so why should they. Even the most challenging of pupils, with very few exceptions accepted this 'rule' and we 'got by' quite well in a career lasting nearly twenty years.
I am reminded of those days in my distant past when I read of the trial of John Terry. Irrespective of a not guilty verdict concerning racial abuse, what a depressing scene; what desperately pathetic, uncouth, limited, ignorant people there are in the world. (The trial centered around the use of the terms a black c*** and f****** k***head.) No argument that the term was used, merely how it was used. And these people are adults, for goodness sake! How rich and self indulgent some modern sportsmen seem to be. And not just sportsmen, for there were loud cheers from the public gallery in court that clearly indicated the behaviour and presumably language of John Terry was acceptable to some. To what depths have we sunk. I am a football follower (of my beloved Derby County) but at times I question whether I am just encouraging sick and depraved people by spending my hard earnt cash so that they can lead a lifestyle devoid of any moral worth.
Not all footballers are bad of course. But when you have a footballer who admits he tried to break an opponents leg (Roy Keane) and another paragon of virtue who doesn't admit to adultery and then has the cheek to resort to law to prevent us knowing what a hypocrite he is (Ryan Giggs) all seems lost. No one seems to care, Keane is seldom off the television sports programmes; Giggs is captain of the Great Britain Olympic team. Remember, these people are heroes, role models to our children and grandchildren; is that right. And before I get too carried away, what would my attitude be, I wonder, if Derby County were to be offered a psychopathic, philandering centre half who happened to be the best prospect since the proverbial sliced bread.