The Law of the Playground
the letter s
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There was always someone who decided that their life would be vastly improved by adopting a cool nickname of their choosing. The idea was that news of your new moniker would spread through the halls of the school, and by lunchtime everyone would know you by your new, cool nickname. The problem was that most people chose something lame like 'mad max' or 'LL Cool J.' Sigh.
approved Oct 9 2003, submitted Jul 26 2003 by Alfonso Gauss
I know someone who still signs off text messages (a thing which tells you who the sender is anyway) with "JD". I think he's hoping it'll catch on, in a sexy, Jack Daniels, James Dean sort of way.
I hope he doesn't read this. Sorry James.
approved Oct 9 2003, submitted Oct 9 2003 by Susan Tobacco
Even sadder, and slightly worrying, is that a friend of mine took the idea of 'cool nickname' slightly too literally and decided that when he was introduced to people as 'Joel', he inform them that his name was 'Cool Guy'.
approved Sep 9 2007, submitted Oct 13 2003 by Louise Jenkins
In year seven, Phillip Anderson tried to spread the word that his new nickname was "Tomahawk". Yeah, right. This nickname lasted for the whole of thirty seconds, whereas the nickname that we assigned him, the far more accurate and descriptive "Penguin", lasted for years.
approved Apr 16 2005, submitted Dec 27 2003 by John Arnold
I know a senior academic at the British Museum who is still, at the age of 40-something, trying to convince people to call him JD in the hope that it will make him seem mean, moody and magnificent.
Rather than a spazz. Called Jeremy.
approved Sep 9 2007, submitted May 1 2006 by anonymous user
As a small child, my mum insisted on drying my hair with a hair-dryer, and if my hair was clean and puffed up I'd refer to myself as "Goggins", after Mrs Goggins from Postman Pat.

About ten years later, a kid called Matthew joined our class from another school. A friend and I were asked to take him under our wing, and we soon found that Matthew had problems. He had special springy shoelaces as he couldn't tie normal ones, and he would constantly blurt out facts like "the earth expands three centimetres every day".

We tried to be kind to Matthew, but in the end we gave up in light of his fact-puking and general spazziness. And when I realised his hair style was sufficiently puffy for him to take on the mantle of "Goggins", it came to pass that the whole year, and then the whole school, knew him as "Goggins".

I like to think that one day the new "Goggins" will, as I did, retire to anonymity and choose a successor.
approved Sep 9 2007, submitted Jun 28 2006 by Arnold Henry
My mate Rat and I went to school with a kid called Matthew Davies. Due to his fey mannerisms, girly hair and weedy physique we called him "Pune".
After several years of taunting he broke down and talked to his parents about it. They suggested that he should stick up for himself and tell us he didnt want to be called Pune any more. The conversation went like this:

Pune: I dont want to be called Pune any more.
Us: Oh?
Pune: From now on I want you to call me "the Hornet".

I believe thats when I threw a rock at his head.
approved Feb 4 2008, submitted Nov 13 2006 by Simon Edwards
We were subjected to school assemblies in which motivational speakers, usually fat, badly-dressed men, would badger us for an hour or two. One such speaker, this time a fat, badly-dressed woman, held up a piece of paper, and informed us that this was our self-esteem. She then proceeded to go through all the rotten things that were said to us (or, we suspected, her) in the course of the day.
"You're ugly."

"No, you can't sit with us."

"Jesus, you honk like a good'un, Cheryl."
With each insult, she would tear off a strip of paper. At the end of the day, evidently, one is left with a very small scrap of paper, or self-esteem.
It was common in the following week for children who had been insulted to pick up a piece of paper and rip it with a mock-sad face; that fat useless jabba had accidentally given children a decent defence to any insult.
approved Sep 29 2004, submitted Feb 21 2004 by Tom Gilboa
Both the user name and the password used to gain access the school's most important files, the Powerpoint presentations for assembly. A few swift alterations later, Jack Petchy had sprouted mysterious nose penises and the award receiver was replaced with a picture of Mr T.
approved Jun 4 2007, submitted Jan 8 2007 by Name Withheld
After the terrorist attacks, anyone who destroyed a paper aeroplane was referred to as a terrorist, and would be violently beaten. Also, hitting someone with a paper aeroplane became known as a 'September 11th' and if this happened, people would pretend to cry over the 'tragedy.'
approved Jun 25 2006, submitted Jun 5 2006 by Peter Lynch
This story contains the words "bucolic" and "boob-pinching" and caused the PL team to go for a little lie down. (Not with each other, dont get funny.)

Sergeant Major was a game played by a lot of girls behind a garden shed in our bucolic playground in primary school. My friend, who invented the game, would always be the Sergeant Major, and another girl would be her Second-in-Command. Mostly the Second-in-Command would be played by a nice, docile girl who was kind to us, but occasionally the School Bully would take that role, which would add an extra frisson to the proceedings. The game was very simple and involved the Sergeant Major lining up the other girls against the shed and giving out small but curiously disturbing punishments such as boob-pinching and chinese burns if we didnt stand up straight enough. It usually lasted all lunchtime because of our lax posture. Despite the oddness this was one of our favourite games. My friend who played the Sergeant Major also instigated Lesbian Day every other Friday.
approved Jul 10 2003, submitted Jul 7 2003 by F F
A more extreme version of kiss chase which never existed at my school, although at the age of about eight, I unsuccessfully tried to convince my cousins it did.
approved Feb 6 2003, submitted Jan 29 2003 by Bobs Meryll
In middle school we got to watch a tasteful and informative series of sex education videos with our pretty young teacher Mrs Wood. At the end of the first video, which we had sat and watched quietly without giggling or crying, she asked 'Now, are there any questions?'. One young boy stuck up his hand and in an earnest and fearful voice asked 'Miss, what's a rainbow kiss?'.
approved Nov 24 2002, submitted Nov 24 2002 by S. Hewitt
Advanced sex-ed some years later included the question to the normally benign Mr Slater (who was meant to be a physics teacher anyway), "Sir, what about gayness?" "We're not going to talk about that." "Why not?" "Because it's disgusting." Pre clause 28, as well. Still, at least now we knew for definite.
approved Nov 24 2002, submitted Nov 24 2002 by S. Hewitt
We'd got through our sex education class with a minimum of sniggering and embarrasment, and Mr Norton asked the class if anyone had any questions. Adrian May stuck his hand up and said, 'Sir, where's my sperms? I've been looking everywhere, but I don't seem to have any yet.' Mr Norton started to the rub the back of his neck (his own, not Adrian's) and managed to stutter something out about different rates of development.
approved Nov 24 2002, submitted Nov 24 2002 by Rob Adey
We had a teacher called Mr Roberts, who had a really gay voice. In our sex education lessons we were giggling at the word vagina. His response - "Well you wouldn't make very good doctors would you - what would you do if I came into your surgery and said 'Doctor, there's something wrong with my vagina'?". Sometimes people just ask for it.
approved Nov 24 2002, submitted Nov 24 2002 by Paddy
In our class, a boy called Adam Russell stood up and asked the teacher, "What if you pissed while you were having sex?" and was told that it was impossible. He dragged this on for about 5 whole minutes, saying "But what if you REALLY needed to go?" and "Would you make a pissy baby?"
approved Nov 24 2002, submitted Nov 24 2002 by Dan Wakely
During a Q & A session, someone asked about what was with being a big gay homosexual. We were treated to a fairly bizarre (and entirely with Clause 28) explanation that gays are really just boys who have never grown up and learned to fancy girls like proper men, and are thus retarded.
(I've met hundreds of these so-called "gays", and I can only agree with your teacher - Log)
approved Mar 14 2003, submitted Jan 21 2003 by Stuart Houghton
I had a fucked up sex education thanks to a junior school teacher called Mr. Beech. He jiggled a lot when talking to us and used to suck yoghurt off his little finger on the swimming bus. Sex was brought into every possible subject. Gems from his time teaching me include...
'Obviously Joseph was very annoyed with Mary because she had had sexual intercourse with someone else.'
'When you grow up are you going to marry Johnny and have lots of little Johnnies?'
'Would you rather live with me or marry Richard and live with him on an island forever?' (I chose Richard quite obviously.)
'Flowers pollinate each other, bit like sex.'
'Everyone choose an organ of the body to draw. Choose sexual organs if you like. Do you want to draw a penis, David? That's ok if you do.' (Predictably, every boy drew a huge cock. The classroom displays looked great for parents' evening.)
'I've noticed no-one in the class can draw peoples legs. Let me demonstrate.' (Here follows an hour long lesson on how to draw the bulge in a mans trousers.)

On one memorable occasion two people from the class were made to put on their PE kit, lie on the floor and be drawn around. Yes, one was me, and no, I don't know why we had to be in our PE kit. When we had satisfactory outlines we were told to draw all the 'outside bits' on and label with any slang words we could think of. What resulted was a scary mix of a young childs outline, huge tits (drawn by the lads)and pubic hair that was quite frankly out of control.
Shortly afterwards he was given a watch and 'asked' to retire.
approved May 22 2003, submitted Apr 4 2003 by Amy Lauren
One young woman of barely fifteen raised her hand during a Q&A session to clarify the sucrose qualities of sperm by asking, "So why does it taste so salty?"
A council flat and child benefit beckoned.
(A schoolma'amish anonymous user writes... Deary me, you've not been doing your homework properly have you? If you keep this up you'll never amount to anything. Thank you, anonymous user. We rely on your vigilance. - Log)
approved Oct 7 2003, submitted Jul 10 2003 by John Fellows
is it just me, or is this place turning into an online version of "call my bluff"?
approved Oct 23 2003, submitted Oct 9 2003 by dan upright
In the 7th grade, our provincial government decreed that even Catholic schoolkids should be taught about sex.
So as not to outrage our parents too deeply, our Principle explained what the format would be: boys and girls would be separated, and taught the bare minimum required to stick it in and make babies.
I never saw the girls' sessions, but our sex education was kicked off with and awkward female teacher coming out with this;
"Now, I don't want anyone to be embarrassed. If you have any questions, just come out with them. Say, for instance, you notice that I'm wearing a white dress, and there is a red stain below my stomach, you should ask me about it."
Thirteen 11-year-old boys were left wondering "what the HELL is she talking about?"
approved Oct 7 2004, submitted Mar 19 2004 by Matt Fortier
Unleashing the knowledge on one hundred twelve year old boys that girls bled out of their fannies was bad enough.
But to tell them it was meant to happen and that it would happen for the rest of their lives really fucked with the minds of boys just starting to want to faff around down there, and set boy/girl diplomacy back several years.
approved Oct 26 2004, submitted Oct 14 2004 by Jimbo B.
As a means of "getting the immaturity out of the way", on the first day of our sex education, all the boys were told to write every word they knew for 'vagina' on the black board. Out came bearded clam, hairy axe wound et al. Then all the girls were asked to write every word they knew for 'penis'. Unfortunately, they were all too shy.
So Mr. Scandrett, in his infinite wisdom, decided that the boys should just go ahead and write all the words they knew for 'penis'. Cue shrieks of embarrassment from the girls, culminating in one of the more sensitive ones suddenly running out of class, crying.
The name that set her off? - 'purple-headed custard chucker', which was then shouted at her at random moments throughout the rest of the year.
approved Apr 19 2005, submitted Oct 20 2004 by Pogglesnatch
During the sex education class in which all methods of contraception were explained and demonstrated, our MALE teacher squatted, knees apart, and held a diaphragm beneath his undercarriage to show all the girls just what laid in store for them. "I've never had to do it!" he joked, to which I replied "Yeah, right, sir!"

I regretted my heckle when he said "Come here, you, and be my vagina."

So, I was forced to stand before the class and make a ring with my hand, while the teacher inserted a coil between my fingers and explained its intricacies.

Sometimes I lie awake crying, just thinking about it.
approved Jul 7 2008, submitted Aug 16 2006 by Self MadeMan
A game that was played with the bladder of a deceased leather football. The bladder itself was known as "The Sex King Ball Bags", and was adorned with a superabundance of graffiti.
The actual rules of the game were vague, to say the least. It was played in the tennis courts, and involved kicking a half-deflated football bladder around, with a valve sticking out of one side.
approved Apr 17 2005, submitted Mar 12 2004 by Keith Burtons
In Primary, the boys and girls loos were next to each other, separated by a wall. Me and a friend worked out a rythm of banging on the walls to the girls with our fists which meant we wanted to have sex with them. If they answered back with the correct return code, it was on. They never did get the return code correct.
One is left with the enduring image of a bunch of girls, standing in a toilet, listening with marked bemusement to the sounds of excited banging emenating from the boy's bathroom - Jamie.
approved Sep 11 2006, submitted Jul 19 2006 by Woggy M
I got my first stirrings when Mrs Ramsay bent over to cut a large sheet of sugar paper I was holding, and I got an unencumbered view of her tits down her top. I was 8. Later that year, sex was explained to me when I asked Lee Davies what he was referring to when he sang a song containing the lyrics '...And the hairs of her Dicky-Dido went down to her knees'.
approved Feb 28 2006, submitted Jan 26 2006 by Andy Mansh
At the time of the Teenage Mutant "Hero" Turtles (Psst, the BBC - we all called them Ninja Turtles anyway, you dicks), a variant of tag where instead of being it, you were 'Sexy Splinter'.

This is a photo of Splinter. Sexy Splinter. Phwoar. Splinter.
approved Sep 30 2004, submitted Mar 15 2004 by anonymous user
The most gay child in the class is Sexy Sue. It is Sexy Sue's task to run around, trying to grab the penises of the other boys. However, you can defend yourself by beating Sexy Sue to a pulp.
approved Nov 24 2002, submitted Nov 24 2002 by Zob
Game based around a tree.
One person would be elected the 'puller' and the rest of us would grab hold of the tree trunk for dear lives. The puller would attempt to remove pupils one by one from holding onto the tree by sheer force and if you were removed you then became a second puller and were then employed in removing others from the tree. The winner was the last one to be left clinging onto the tree.
This game, however, died a rapid death after some of the older boys said we all looked like we were trying to shag the tree. It did too.
approved May 5 2003, submitted Dec 19 2002 by Nick H
The inability of English teachers to explain how Shakespeare or Chaucer could possibly be useful reading material is matched only by the pupils' inability to explain, in terms that English teachers accept, why it isn't. An impossible situation that will continue as long as there is oil in the earth.
approved Nov 24 2002, submitted Nov 24 2002 by Anon
So, you've been taken to see some Shakespeare play, and whilst you're trying to be polite and enjoy the thing as best you can, given that it's all in Stupidish. But there's your fucking English Teacher next to you, guffawing too fucking loud at every damn joke and pun.
Watch the actors closely - you can see the spear carriers mouthing 'wanker' at each other.
approved Jul 9 2004, submitted Apr 18 2004 by anonymous user
From New Zealand. Mock any embarrassing situation with the word shaaaaaaame, following by a stroking of the chin between thumb and forefinger.
Regional variations; Shamola!, where you rub the forefingers of either hand together, and oddly enough, in Wellington, of saying TAAAAAAAAY! and pulling a lower eyelid down.
(Shame in England can be accompanied by licking the finger and holding it to the shamed person's face. The heat of their embarrassment will cause the spit to "sizzle". Well, it won't, of course - that's why you have to shout "sizzle".

approved May 7 2003, submitted Feb 19 2003 by Jen Ferguson, Jon Blyth
1) Find unpopular/poor/ginger kid and approach him, smiling in unthreatening manner.
2) Ask victim to tell a joke; watch his face light up at this unexpected act of social acceptance.
3) No matter how funny the punchline, DO NOT LAUGH, instead remain silent, look him in eye and hold chin in hand in quizzical manner.
4) Wait until victim shows signs of confusion or discomfort, then begin pointing at him and chanting: "Shame! Shame! Shame!"
5) Watch as crowd gathers, all pointing and shouting "SHAME! SHAME! SHAME!"; becoming a seething mob, creating a bayying and increasingly hysterical VORTEX of shame, until victim cries and/or pisses pants.
approved Aug 9 2007, submitted Apr 21 2006 by Malibu Doghonkey
Lunchtime entertainment based as loosely as possible on the classic 80s arcade game Arkanoid.
Arkanoid was a posh version of Breakout, and involved moving a bat around to bounce a ball against some blocks.
Arkanoid didn't involve our class headcase chasing us around school trying to whack us around our shorts-trousered legs with a large ruler. This was known, unlike the game Arkanoid, which this doesn't resemble at all, as "crisping".
You were briefly immune from crisping when you stood on a desk. Arkanoid had no such safety zone. However, to maintain this safety, you had to jump from desk to desk, like in Donkey Kong. Not Arkanoid.
approved Jul 13 2004, submitted Aug 14 2003 by Name Withheld, Jon Blyth
Pre-Feargal solo, but possibly not pre-Undertones. On Charity No-Tie day - freedom of expression for 50p - anyone not undoing their top shirt button was said to be Sharky. I do not know to this day whether this was an insult or not.
approved Nov 24 2002, submitted Nov 24 2002 by Matthew Petty
Original played by screwing up a piece of paper in Mr. Sharpe's lesson and throwing it around until he noticed. Later , in the abscence of Mr. Sharpe's class, drawing pins were pushed through the paper before it was launched, causing some pain to the catcher. The lengths we went to, just so that we could play Sharpe Ball without the name seeming inapt.
approved Nov 24 2002, submitted Nov 24 2002 by The Butler
Someone getting a brand new Helix plastic ruler was generally acknowledged as the opening gambit of a game of Shat Poo. Similar to Speednob, the brand new ruler would carefully be passed to owner of the sharpest compass, who would then scratch away the crazily jagged 'Shatter Proof' logo until only 'Shat Poo' remained. The modified ruler would then be replaced carefully into the victim's pencil case and hilarity would ensue (as it so often does) on discovery.
approved May 13 2003, submitted Dec 16 2002 by Propellerhed
A variant of the game shat poo for owners of new Shatterproof rulers who were suspected of being gay.
approved Feb 3 2003, submitted Dec 16 2002 by Propellerhed