I Should Have Listened To The Honey Monster

Posted: May 3, 2011 in Chawn, Schooldays

It is 7:49. I am in bed, and may or may not have work today. I’m a supply teacher, and find out if I have work at about 7:30. Once it gets to about 7:48 I’m safe. I can sleep soundly. And that’s exactly what I’m doing.

As Dave Jones sings.

Hang on.

I shudder.

Dave’s a great singer, but he’s not in this dream! I sink into my sheets. Dave’s getting louder; which means The Boss knows I’m here!

I surrender, and pick up the phone. A day that starts this badly can only go well.

“Dan, Pedmore want you. Thanks.”

No time for conversation with The Boss. No ‘Hiya Dan! D’you like chips?’ None of that! I sigh. The kind of sigh where your lips wobble. I just don’t want to go to work. Especially now! Now I have eleven minutes to leave the house. I smell, but there’s no time to shower. I grab my nicest suit and try wearing a few extra t-shirts to stop the smell escaping.


NO! Not today! For I have eleven minutes! And no cereal. Hang on… Wait! I have Sugar Puffs! Several! And some forgotten-about milk! I whip up an emergency eggcup breakfast and set off for school. I’m hungry, and wish I’d bought more sugar puffs, but you are what you eat, and I’m hairy enough for my liking.

I get to the staff room on time. Dorren is there. On his mobile. Eternally. I’ve known Dorren for nearly a year, and until last week thought his name was Larry. A name he happily answered to. For nearly a year!

I am passed a note.

“Please take Year 7 to an emergency assembly. Thanks.”

The bell rings and I march some children to the hall. My job is to stand at the end of the row and watch out for noisy boys. Though, this is a good class. Except one.


Leo gives me hassle in every lesson. I can only, and do dream of getting my own back. He’s a rogue. Not like X-Men, or Wesley Wyndham-Price; but like one of Will Hunting’s mates.

The assembly’s serious. So serious that even Leo’s behaving. The head of year’s giving a stern-faced rollocking and has said the words ‘teaching and learning’ so many times that I’ve started counting. And I hope the kids have too.

I look around, and smile. I’m an amazing cover teacher. The Liam Neeson of educational staffing! I could cover a class from over a mile away!

5 times.

This is my first assembly as an adult and to be honest, I’m a little insecure in this surprise environment. – or ‘surprironment’ – I’m a Frenchman on a battlefield. Other than Zinedine. Or Eric. Or the guy out of Ocean’s Twelve. So I’m watching the teachers. Watching the teachers who are watching the kids. Who are watching the teachers.

And I’m hungry.

My distinctly different body shape means I need a lot of Strawberry Mini-Wheats. I get the kind of hungry that makes Leighton Baines eat elevenses. I’d love to see the Honey Monster playing for England. Or The Stig. Or Optimus Prime!

My stomach’s making the kind of ‘awwrgghhorrrghhh’ noise stomachs make when they’re a kettle boiling without water, and I’m becoming very aware that I am ridiculously hot.

I’m standing in front of a furnace.

In extra t-shirts!

I try to focus as my stomach stabs the word ‘STOMACH’ into my head like ‘GROND’ before the walls of Minás Tíríth. 8 times! Yes! Come on Head of Year! You can do it! You can do it! 9 times! Oh man. I feel woozy, and my legs are wobbly. Is there a chair? I need to sit down.

Darn! No chairs. Could I go and find one? No. For that would distract from teaching and learning! I’ll be alright. I’m fine. I’ll just lean back against the wall a bit. That should work.


Yep, here comes the light-headedness. And the funny colours. It’s fine. I’ve done this before! I just need to… close… my eyes… for… just a… a…


I open my eyes.

To pandemonium.

“EVERYBODY OUTSIDE!!!” screams a teacher as kids run up and down the wall screaming! I’m in the first scene of Lost!


Hang on.


Up and down the wall?


I’m on the floor. In the recovery position. World renowned (but not for his cooking skills) chef Dave is in my face. Well, in front of. “Dan, are you ok???” I don’t understand. And try to get up.

“Dan! Don’t get up!”

I breathe. It hurts. Well, it’s sensitive. Like when you have braces removed. I’m confused. And try to get up.


“Dan! Don’t get up! Just lie there!”

I rest my head on the floor. And breathe again. EEEE!! It’s weird! I don’t like it. Hang on… No!!! Oh, you have got to be kidding me! I lick my teeth. Ow! And cut my tongue! My left front tooth is sharp! I look in front of me and see three pieces of white enamel-y-looking stone.

Oh no!


Also, what? Hang on? Was I just asleep? Why am I waking up in school?

“Dan, you fainted!”

“Oh what!? For flip’s sake!”

It doesn’t look like they’re kidding me. The nurse arrives and finally allows me to sit up as she checks me over hilariously flirtatiously and books an emergency appointment at the dentist.

I sigh.

This is typical.


A few minutes later I am walking through the playground to grab my coat from the classroom. It is now break, and I am inundated with heart-warmingly worried kids. I’m shaken, and vulnerable; so decide to get the heck out of there. A kid runs up to me with panache. I decide to listen.

I like panache.

“Sir! Are you alright?”

He says something.

Something hilarious.

“Sir, do you know you landed on Leo?”

Apple Sauce! Dave Benson Phillips would be proud.

I walk to the dentist’s, and stop to buy some sugar puffs.



What Really Did Happen When The Honey Monster Played Professional Football


  1. Jen says:

    This made me laugh out loud – Well done Dan – perhaps I should sign up for this?

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s