Mr Keik

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In the first couple of years of senior school I did history as one of the subjects, since it was mandatory, and I remember our teacher was a Mr Keik. I suppose he was a young teacher, even if at that time all teachers seemed old for us kids. I remember he wore large thick lensed glasses and nylon striped shirts with tie, that seemed to make him warmer than comfortable. Presumably, thinking back now, it was probably his first teaching job after leaving university, and had been undoubtedly a fine scholar but was patently unprepared for such a debacle of a seat of learning as that of ours.
I was, for my part, a keen and passionate cartoonist, and honed my talents sat next to my best friend Mark Clatworthy in our history lessons, who also enthusiastically doodled by my side; Mark was however one of the few pupils of our school who went on to university, which was some achievement considering that in the brief 15 or so years of life of the school you could count the number of university students on your fingers and toes … easily!
I remember it was terrible in our over-crowded classroom, Mr Keik trying to read something from the book to the constant din of chatter, and the mocking tones of the β€˜hard-nuts’ at the back. When our teacher turned to write something on the board it would invariably be accompanied to a volley of sodden paper bullets splatting on the wall next to him, discharged form makeshift biro pea-shooters from the bullies at the back.
At the end of the lesson at the ring of the bell, he would lock the door in an attempt to quell the surge for the exit. We were though on ground floor, and so the windows were flung open and his charge would then make a dash for it, laughing hysterically as they jumped out saying their cheerful goodbyes.

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