Obligatory "ignore this space" : https://sacoronavirus.co.za

I didn't have a good school experience. Fortunately I am able to take the blame as, when I was given the opportunity to move up a grade I took it, so that the reader may file me just as I was filed thirty-five years ago, within the borderless education system.

People came to me after school telling me that I was being monitored; at school I knew I was being monitored. It would be irresponsible of an education system to refuse to accept reports of how a person is getting on after leaving school. Those who talk about judgmentalism might want to think about themselves standing around a cot wondering if the baby was going to try to climb out of it. Putting people in boxes is just a bit of fun until you find yourself in one.

Then, of course, those who are methodical are sought out.

This story is about me, not you.

I didn't want to go to school. I was learning to exercise my reasoning skills and might have asked what I would learn there that I couldn't learn at home. I have at times had to check my logic with a computer; but I've also had to, at other times, check it with a pencil. It is my opinion that an argument is a discussion which starts with a contradiction. A debate is a discussion which is weighted in favour of those who wield arbitrary power.

I was given insight into my own powers, in contrast to those of others, in my second year of school: we were shown cards, which they called flash cards, which required us to do quick mental calculations and shout out the answer. In this game I was seldom first. But it was recorded that when the whole class was shouting out the wrong answer, I had sufficient time to think, and therefore opportunity to make myself heard. The only reason to play copycat is in order to claim that you gave the answer first.

It has been clear to me that computers were being used for the purposes of education by making use of tools which undermine knowledge. If we are reliant on computer animations, we must dispense with the infinitessimal. Without them, numbers can indeed be big. Astronomically big numbers lead us to contemplating futility.

I too find that computer animations can guide me to obvious facts: sometimes just the obvious fact that I aught to eat vegetables every now and then.

Calling a nut a fruit, I need to make one more round of a place few people talk about without complaining that other people came and swept away a perfect Utopia. It was Utopia to me. But it starts with roads being public spaces, and licences only required for those operating machines on them.

There was once a requirement that bicycles had to be licenced, which seems to be a matter of pedantry on the aspect of what aught to be called a vehicle; the vehicle determines whether the driver needs a licence. I was glad my bicycle didn't need a licence, because licence disks are ugly. Bicycles are quiet: this is a good thing. But when we see someone on a motorbike, we know that the noise it makes is part of the enjoyment. Therefore we uglified our bicycles in order to make a racket. I'm not sure if we spoilt anyone's peaceful meditations, but we only did it during the day. And, generally speaking, we weren't just riding up and down the road: it was an added effect to something we already enjoyed.

The information had been shared with us, while we were talking about our bicycles and what kind of motorbike we might own one day, that girls and boys older than us, and sometimes younger than us, were doing something other than meditating together. These people, hearing us going down the road with our pieces of plastic pegged so as to be actuated by the spokes, might well have copied from their divorced parents and ejaculated, 'drat that kid!'

One of my friends at the time lived with his mother, and I occasionally went with him to visit his father. I'm not in a position to play judge, but it was clear to me which of his parents had chosen irresponsibility.

School was miserable because I didn't know how to make a fist. But it was only social outcasts who picked fights with me; thus, three or four years out of school I realized that they had had every reason to pick fights with me: I'm a misfit that nonetheless earned respect. In truth, a group of misfits who did respect me were living in the Utopia of my childhood, and, at the age of forty, I couldn't bear not having yet been able to say my final goodbye.

I met with a classmate many years after school, and he referred to the sharing of baby photos in the same way I talk of the plundering of boyhood memories. But I'm a hellish twilight boy: I hear of girls making men of boys and say, 'oh yeah? show her to me!'

My dad doesn't like speaking plainly to me about fuel additives. Hellish twilight boys are better off not speaking plainly to each other about such things. Dad did try to emigrate, but it may so be that the obvious place to emigrate, was, with more insight, obviously the worst place to be. When we think we're standing on our own two feet, it's not pleasant to have to realize that our struggle has been watched, by the one we sought independence from; perhaps the one who made the nest the most uncomfortable for us.

I have said that I had no girlfriends in primary school. However, I did manage to get a girl to punch a pencil into my arm. She and I didn't share common interests, so it might be said that our relationship was short, sharp, and to-the-point. Another girl who had garnered my attention when I first arrived at this school, was one whose looks were free. A difficulty which exists to this day is that I was punished for arriving at this conclusion myself; years later I was looked on by another with the same name, in the same way, which brings us into the worst kind of conflict, for the Ancient Mariner himself relies on renewable energy.

And our enthusiasm for noisy bicycles was comixed with that for cars which required no fuel but the sun. To make our own, all we needed to do was buy a little solar panel. But the messenger had to bear the bad news that the executive had ruled against it; we therefore ask a friend to manually, and quietly, actuate a piston in a box which is sealed but for where we may feed him peanuts.

Having therefore solved the problem which our generation was expected to solve, or be told that we were selling ourselves out to the doing of things for the feeling to be gained thereby, without thought of the future, I look again at a school market, but one, as I recall, that made use of tickets and not money. I kept what I had bought and won at that fair, right through to adulthood. Right through to when facing facts meant facing another single mother.

Another single mother telling me to keep up the good fight. Another one telling me that it is futile. Others singing about having found Utopia at last.

But, beware of the girls? Come on!