Saturday, September 3, 2016

The Messenger Boy

New Zealand Herald
1 September 2016

A daily look at life's oddities by Ana Samways

"This was told to me by a former teacher at Gisborne Boys High," writes David Howard, of Pakuranga. "A quiet boy who was glad to leave school on the day he turned 15, took a job with the post office delivering telegrams. Apart from being an unassertive boy, Tomkins (not his real name) had had continual issues with wearing school uniform. Soon after starting his new job, he delivered a telegram to his old school. He was spotted by the Deputy Principal. 'Ah, Tomkins! Out of uniform again, I see. Go and wait outside my office door!' ... 'But, Sir ...' 'No 'buts', Tomkins. I've warned you several times. Get to my office!' ... The Deputy Principal gave him three of the best. 'And don't let me catch you out of uniform again!' he said."

[See also Jan Brunvand, The Baby Train (1993), 169-170.]