I get as excited about the first night of these classes as I used to about the first day of school. I love seeing what type of people I'm going to be sharing the classroom with and what the tutor is going to be like, but most of all, it's the idea of learning something new and trying my hardest to be good at it that makes me want to write "I love you" on my eye lids and turn up at class with an apple for my teacher.
I was never this excited about learning as a child. I just couldn't wait to show everyone my new shoes in the morning and play Charlie's Angels with the girls at lunch time.
The laws of the classroom don't seem to have changed that much. It doesn't matter how old we get there is always going to be the class geek, the shy one, the loud mouth, the pretty one and the one that no one wants to sit next to.
The only difference is, in a class full of adults, the one whom no one wants to sit next to shouldn't really stink of piss. . . and they should always be able to afford their lunch.
I remember getting my legs slapped for refusing to hold the hand of a girl in my primary school because she had an incontinence problem. I had tucked my arm inside my sweater and instead gave her the sleeve to hold onto. I was only found out because it was a country dancing class and she had stretched my sleeve to twice it's length.
I can normally tell by the end of the first class who is going to drop out, who's going to have a classroom meltdown and who's going to last the distance.
I'm now a veteran of "adult education" so have learned that the initial class will have around 28 pupils, the second week I'll be sharing with around 20, the 3rd will only be about 12 (plus stragglers) and three months in it may as well be last call at a singles bar with the tutor behaving like he's got a fast car, a bag full of cocaine and a humongous dick.
I'm always early for class and it makes me furious when anyone turns up late. I hate lateness anyway but you best believe that if I'm paying to be taught a lesson, I'm going to damn well teach you one if you come loafing into my learning time and start disrupting it. You can't say you've over slept when the class starts at 7.30pm on a Monday evening. I don't care what your excuse is, I'm forty now and my brain cells are dying fast enough without having to wait for you to drag your tardy arse into the classroom.
We had to do the oddest thing this evening as an "ice breaker". We had to introduce ourselves and say three fascinating things about ourselves but one had to be a lie. This is not the sort of thing you would want to teach a classroom full of children, how to be a convincing liar, but for adults, I'm all for it.
As usual, some people are so dull that their fascinating lie was " I have a cat called Monty" or "my husband has brown hair".
I made all three of my things up.
"My real name is Brenda" "I am the plaything of the Libyan President" and "I've shit my pants". It turned out that I am so adept at lying they actually believed all three and no one wanted to hold my hand at break time.
My tutor has had "success" as a screen writer "allegedly". I've googled him and he wrote a couple of episodes of "The Bill" and something else that never made it to a terrestrial channel. I like him though. Every one of my tutors has been slightly eccentric. I absolutely loved my creative writing teacher, he had a shock of white hair and looked like he wore a nappy. I spent mostly every class slumped down in my chair and looking directly between his legs. I'd only sit up straight when it was my time to read.
I think this is why I love going back to school as well. I get to show off. I am always the first to volunteer to read, to start a group, to venture an opinion and to tell someone their story sounds like they copied it from a trashy magazine. I like to be helpful in class.
My homework this week is to watch something from my DVD collection and then write a scene from it as a script, whomever has their work identified correctly the most times gets a gold star.
Now it doesn't take a genius to work out a popular film so we have to make it as brief as possible:
There's a big ship
There's a bit of ice
There's a big gash
Glug, Glug, Glug
Some really withered feet with what look like clippity claws on them
"Oops, I've dropped it to the bottom of the ocean"
And the gold star is mine.