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When I were a lad we had this brand new subject called PSE (personal and social education) which nobody cared a toss about. Not least because it was entirely taught by the school numpties that we knew the head would never entrust with an exam class. Kids pick up on such things very quickly. Quite rapidly after I wrote doggerel into speech balloons involving the use of condoms PSE upgraded itself to PSHE (the “H” being for health). I think it still amounted to don’t shag Leanne because she’s a right slag and you’ll get Chlamydia. Well we didn’t need lessons to know that a girl who was aright slag and could manage 64 farts in 60 seconds in a tech drawing class was a slapper (I timed it – God help me!). Anyway, they are still on about (BBC News yesterday morning) the need for more sex education in what is now PSHEE – Personnel, social, health and economic eructation and “citizenship” is lurking round the block with menaces. Why?

Never did any good that I saw. Nobody took a non-exam class seriously. No teenager needs to be taught about sex. From what I recall we were very keen amateurs. A little known fact is that Americans are more likely to lose their virginity on the back seat of a car but amongst us Brits it’s a graveyard – well you guys have bigger cars and we have more dead folks. And more to the point (though there is a graveyard spitting distance from here and I’m 5’11″ so the Corsa is out) what is this nonsense about “more” sex ed? It is typical statist drivel hurling more and more shit at the wall and seeing how much sticks. Note they never say “better” just “more”. Well Mr and Mrs Ugg the cave-folks figured it out. We know this or I for for one wouldn’t be typing this tripe. Unless of course that moustachioed fanny mechanic Lord Robert Winston is on monkey glands and is 6453 years old or something.

Anyway, more sex education is merely more sinecures for PSHEE-ers. It will not make the blindest bit of difference (this is a feature not a bug to them) because of course it means even more shit can be thrown at the wall when all that needs to be said is what we all know anyway. Leanne might be hot and tight (just like prom night) but she won’t be quite so beguiling when she’s whelped a few pups and has a vulva like the top of a Wellington boot.

The great irony here is that I found sex very interesting in the context of the biology that I studied to university level. Fascinating branch of science. PSHEE – fail. I also found the practical elements of sex quite amusing.

Once, as a 16 year old, me and my mates were waiting for a bus. A siren call came from the bushes, “Eh lads you’re missing a reet treat coz me mate is having a piss round here”. Well Nick looks at Barney and Barney looks at Paul and Paul looks at Scott and no words are passed but we just leg it. I grew up in the North East and The Fat Slags are documentary and not cartoon. I have seen things you people would not believe and I am not talking about attack ships on fire off the shoulder of Orion. I have seen a bird fisted on the hood of a 1.6l Ford Capri. Not the V6 model – that would have had some form of class.

So, yeah, more utterly ignored sex-ed will do the trick. Absolutely.


  1. Ross says:

    At my school PSE became known as “Penis Stretching Exercises” for some reason.

  2. JuliaM says:

    “I grew up in the North East and The Fat Slags are documentary and not cartoon.”


  3. RAB says:

    Well in the voice of the Monty python sketch…

    PSE classes? You were lucky, we didn’t even know how we were born!

    Anecdote alert.

    So I’m 13 and have been in Grammar school for two years now, when in 1965 our teachers gave us a letter to take home to our parents. This asked them to come to the school and watch a film about sex education that they were planning on showing us pupils. Those were the days eh? parental consultation over such delicate matters!

    Well like I said, I’m 13. We have already done Reproduction in Biology, albeit in relation to rabbits, and the textbook had diagrams of the human male and female anatomy with the dangly bits A, and slot B included. Insert A into B and shake well for 10 minutes and hey presto new life occurs! And that was our total sex education.

    Of course we all knew about sex and how to do it by then, it was getting a chance to do it was the thing, and a place too. Hence Nicks Cars and tombstones analogy.

    We also had this old fashioned thing called morality that said that if you got a girl into “trouble” you would have to do the “right ” thing , but this would very likely ruin your life. So we were very mindful and self informed of contraception.

    So my parents duely went to the screening and when they came back, they were sat in the car in our driveway for what seemed like ages.

    Eventually my mum got out and came in the house and said to me, “Your father wishes to talk to you in the car young man” Dad had drawn the short straw.

    Well my dad was incredibly straight laced. Many of his generation who had fought in the war still were, despite the “I may get killed tomorrow! how about a shag then?” antics that were going on around them.

    I could see he was nervous when I got in. He was bright purple and he had two fags on the go at once.

    “Well Richard there’s something that your mother and I feel we should tell you, you see when a man loves a woman and she loves him, and they get married, well then…”

    I cut him off short with a smirk and said “Forget it Dad, we all already know!”

    “You do??” he was visibly relieved and that’s the first and last time my father and I ever discussed sex. Sport and politics all the time, but sex never again.

    They never did show us pupils the film by the way. We learnt about sex the old fashioned way, behind the bike sheds.

    And the moral of this tale is that my generation had virtually no teenage pregnancies or single mother problems. Not because we were ignorant of the mechanics of sex, because we wern’t, but because we lived in a more moral and careful, and yes judgemental society. We didn’t want to ruin our lives over a quick bit of jiggery pokery.

    And of course the ultimate Moral here is that the more time and money Govt spends on trying to solve a problem, the worse the problem gets.

    But it all makes jobs for a working sexpert to do, doesn’t it?

  4. Don’t talk to me about PHSE. Mrs P has been livid about it for a few years now.

    It’s not the sex-ed that is the problem with it though. The rest of it is pure, unadulterated government conditioning of kids. The syllabus can be dictated by whichever party is in charge … and you can’t refuse it to be taught unless you send your kids private.

  5. NickM says:

    Julia, you are from East London / Essex. You seen nothing yet. RAB has it nailed. Your Dad smoked in the car with you whilst you were a minor. He ought to have gone to jail!

    The ultimate moral issue here is of course that it only gets learned behind the bike sheds.

  6. Furor Teutonicus says:

    My Brother-in-law was the best. He took my Sisters two lads aside, “You know all that you hear in the play ground about men and women? Well it’s true, O.K, carry on”.

    Beat that.

  7. Lynne says:

    RAB paints a familiar picture – I was behind him by some five years by my reckoning (passed the 11 plus in ’68). I never went to school with anyone who achieved the underage pregnancy thing or even bragged about doing “it”. Snogging, on the other hand, was an acceptable pursuit. Many would say it was compulsory. It’s what the rear of bike sheds was for other than catching a quiet smoke. Schoolgirl pregnancy created an incredible scandal and although it did happen it was usually at a sec. mod. school and to a girl who “should have known better” and “not the sort you want your kids to mix with”. Strangely, it always seemed to be the unfortunate girl’s fault even if she was incredibly naive and she would carry that stigma for the rest of her life. Stories like that proved to be an effective deterrent for the rest of us.

    The very notion of schoolkids being routinely treated for clap and other STDs or being taught how to put on a Frenchie (or even being told what a Frenchie was for) was simply unheard of back then although you ran the gamut of playground rumours. If anyone had suggested teaching oral or anal sex to kids there would have been a lynching courtesy of the outraged public. Moral constraints and social responsibility were in place and I think we were better for it.

    I was more concerned with getting through the mountain of homework I was given every night. You really knew what education was all about in those days. There was none of this dumbing down bullshit. These were the days when biology, chemistry and physics were separate subjects and were free of anti-technology greenie biased idiocy. Remember when English had things like correct spelling, puntuation, comprehension and grammar before it mutated into an entry vehicle for diversity, yoof culcha and political correctness? Today we have social engineering in place of education. How very fucking depressing.

    Nick, I’ve never heard the term fanny mechanic before. I’ll have to remember that one when I go for my next boob and lube job. :D

  8. mehere says:

    Ah, the joys of youngsters learning about sex. At my school it came in three stages: dirty jokes to help explain it was fun even if it turned out the descriptions were not entirely accurate; twanging a girl’s bra straps a few times to see that females had reactions and, well, prove they were different; trying to work out how studying the reproduction cycle of rabbits related to what we young males were all desperate to do.

    There were a number of variations, such as leafing through dirty black and white pictures that were stored in an older brother’s chimney (behind the gas fire, IIRC), trips to Soho to look at the Prossys, or creeping up on people in woods who were busy doing it to watch what they did.

    So one way or another sex was foisted on us youngsters whether we liked it or not, and it turned out most of us liked it.

  9. NickM says:

    mehere, You fail. You are almost perfect but you fail to appreciate that Frankie Vaughn is an endangered species due to the destruction of traditional hedgerows. From my youth (and well into my 20s) left-handed reading matter was always self-generated under hedges. God alone knows why.

    More to the point, if sex hadn’t been “foisted” on you or any of us on this planet then I think I couldn’t site nigh on 7 billion reasons to counter that.

  10. Endivio R says:

    I went to a boys’ Grammar School in the seventies. As you say, the biology textbook had all you needed to know as regards the basic mechanics and hydraulics. But I did appreciate the one “sex ed” class we ever had, which was in Biology and consisted of going to another room to watch a video which had been made for squaddies sometime in the 50s I think and was basically saying “if you are posted in some hot country and feel like shagging the locals, know that this is what you may end up with”, followed by lots of technicolor shots of pus, pustules, chancres, swollen gonads, crawly insects, cracked flesh, dripping blood and slime in full close-up. This was quite a treat when you considered that the alternative that day would have been preparing worms for dissection by using them as football rattles.

  11. mehere says:

    NickM: ah, but the failure is all yours. While Frankie Vaughan rarely entered my consciousness (I blame my desires on wanting to have a relationship with Lulu and/or June Palmer, rather than a male singer) I do know the difference between site and cite.

  12. Woman on a Raft says:

    moustachioed fanny mechanic

    Had an attack of hiccups at that. You win a prize.

  13. Lynne says:

    Frankie Vaughan is a wonderful example of rhyming slang. It’s quite versatile too. Jazz mags can be renamed hankie Frankie and BDSM mags can be described as spanky Frankie.

    You can tell I’ve had too much spare time on my hands today…

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