David Thompson


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August 17, 2021



Also, I was introduced to beer by my music teacher who took a few of us to the pub.

I recall my first pint of Guinness - aged fifteen, I think - when our English teacher invited a handful of his ‘star’ pupils to a backstreet pub. This was the same chap, incidentally, who was shagging the teenage girl who’d left school only a year earlier. He seemed to very much enjoy the frisson of scandal and being seen to push boundaries.

A Guardian reader, since you ask.

Like I said, a different world.

I’m pretty sure no lasting harm was done by a pint of Guinness, though it took me forever to drink it and I still don’t like the stuff. But if you’re a man in his thirties and getting your jollies by trying to impress fifteen-year-olds with your edginess, and doing it year after year, with the same well-worn routine, I think one eyebrow should probably be raised.


Several friends independently mentioned this and now I look back to various in-class incidents and hints from other teachers it makes sense. Also, she once asked me and I was clueless so didn't go. Still not sure if I'm grateful for my ignorance.

Yes. For quite some time I had positive memories of my former high school swimming coach. But since he organized a reunion about five years ago and all of us have been in touch with each other, I learned that he had married (and at some point divorced) one of the girls a few years ahead of me. Now I don't have direct knowledge that he was fooling around with this girl when she was in school but that is how they knew each other. I also was a couple of friend-groups away from actually knowing her. Some of those mutual older friends hinted over drinks that the affair began while she was in school. That said, additionally since the reunion Coach has acknowledged, quite proudly now, that through the popular 23-And-Me thing he unknowingly fathered a child during a one-night stand shortly before he was our coach. Not the most terrible thing to have happened but a very, very odd thing to be so proud about. The way he presented it was very off-putting. Especially to many of the girls on the team who looked up to him. Then just yesterday, an ex-teammate who has been anti-vax, related that her husband (another classmate of mine) and mother-in-law were in the hospital with Covid. Amongst the supportive replies, good ole Coach could not resist, in the pretend prefacing of not being judgmental, making a rather judgmental post. Well his ex-wife, the one from school, really let him have it. F-bombs etc. Normally I would sympathize with the man against a woman scorned but I was wanting to reach through the post and beat his short little old bastard ass myself. Did I mention he's a leftist "family" lawyer? I suppose my point in mentioning this is, contrary to my upbringing and previous convictions, perhaps ignorance is bliss.


@ David: "By my estimate, at least 5% of the teaching staff were nonces – and known as such by many of the kids, ..."

An older French and Latin teacher at my English-style private school in the 1960s, a man who loved ballroom dancing and often pirouetted around the room like a poor man's Fred Astaire, was known to all the lads as 'Pansy' though many of the younger and naïve lads [including me], did wonder why he was named after a flower. He had a habit of squeezing our buttocks firmly when we stood by his desk as he corrected our work.

Nowadays any school boys groped in such a way would be told they were seriously psychologically damaged, given counseling and schools would pay $millions in hush money. I doubt that any of us who were groped considered we were SEXUALLY ABUSED!!!!, but simply laughed it off and got on with the business of being active lads.


but simply laughed it off and got on with the business of being active lads.

Guessing from the wording that this was in a teenager context? Young children, young boys, subjected to such behavior, too young to understand what is going on, are seriously emotionally harmed by such behavior. I've seen what such a thing did to friends from the early 1970's and at least one child of the late 1980s.


"Guessing from the wording that this was in a teenager context?"

Yes, you're correct. It was opportunistic behaviour by the teacher in class and we were all too young and naïve - ages 12-14 - in the early 1960s in very conservative Australia to understand what was going on.

Sam Duncan

“I very much doubt my school was some outlier in this regard.”

The teacher parents of a childhood friend of mine were unshakeable in their opinion that the staff of independent schools were only there because they couldn't get jobs at “proper” indoctrination centres schools. And it's certainly true that the British “public school” (a status to which my own alma mater certainly aspired, if it didn't quite reach it) has a certain unsavoury reputation of its own. But I can honestly say that I never once saw or heard of any of That Kind of Thing.

Maybe I was naïve (not impossible by any means, although I don't think so; there were certainly a few teachers who — boys being boys — we believed were Not As Other Men, but I really can't recall any Unpleasantness), or we were extraordinarily lucky.

Now I come to think of it, there were several strong rumours of (heterosexual) dalliances between some of the staff, though. And the reason I come to think of that is that some of us would have given our eye teeth to have been approached by the female half of one of these alleged affairs in particular; she eventually ended up affianced to a certain prominent public figure, and a sort of minor “it-girl” of the day.

“Anyone want to bet against?”

Not at all.


The behavior of the teachers described in the above posts is a grave moral offense. We would I think be a lot better off if we planted our feet and called it by that name. Too many of us have shied off for decades now, and why? for fear of being tee-hee'd at by sophisticates, who are mostly pseudo anyway. So instead of a firm moral stance, we try to build a case by up-crying the harm done to victims; but that kind of case brings in the quantifying social scientists, who as easily minimize harm as exaggerate it -- a twist of the knobs either way -- and so the outcome is rigged in favor of moral relativism.

So here we are, but never too late to say enough already.


And this is the Party of Science. Believe in Science! Follow The Science! It's only "Science" when it suits them.

From the preamble to the constitution of the Communist Party of the USA, circa 1944:

...the establishment of socialism, according to the scientific principles enunciated by the greatest teachers of mankind, Marx, Engels, Lenin, and Stalin, embodied in the Communist International...

second-generation queerspawn

Appropriate language, because "spawn" has traditionally been a dehumanizing epithet.


The final conversation I had with an acquaintance who was heavily into the SFcon/kink/poly/BDSM community...

That reminds me: There is a significant population of Heinlein worshippers in the poly community. Don't ever suggest to them that Heinlein might have been wrong about sex.

Richard Cranium
There is a significant population of Heinlein worshippers in the poly community.

Mainly due to The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress.


Mainly due to The Moon Is A Harsh Mistress.

Many other stories, too, including the Lazarus Long stories, although I forget many details. Never mind what psychotherapists have learned, just worship Heinlein with an unending rah rah rah. There is much good in Heinlein's stories, but this tendency for fans to worship writers as infallible oracles and as fonts of perfect art is tiresome and sometimes harmful.

Daniel Ream

one of the most striking things to me about Creation / Jacobson-Smith and her self-congratulatory "squeeee"-ing is how conformist and pleasing to the establishment it is [...] her squeal of excitement is because she and her similarly "neurodivergent queer" colleague won the praise of an older and more experienced colleague.

It's almost like women are herd animals preoccupied with currying favour with the queen bee.

some of us would have given our eye teeth to have been approached by the female half of one of these alleged affairs

Talk to some of the boys who have been on the receiving end of such predation and you'll change your mind.

this tendency for fans to worship writers as infallible oracles and as fonts of perfect art

The kinds of people who become fans - as opposed to "I like a ripping good yarn with rayguns and bug-eyed monsters" are using their fandom as a security blanket, a way of avoiding a real world that they can't cope with. These kinds of people can't deal with nuance very well; they see things in stark black and white. Any weakness in the security blanket means the whole thing must be discarded. Hence why you get things like fans still defending Marion Zimmer Bradley, or China Mieville, or Arthur C. Clarke.

All while pearl-clutching over H. P. Lovecraft's cat.

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