Though I certainly consider myself too cool for school, I also consider myself too old for school. Social practices are flaunted in dreams, however, so it was with confusion that I returned to my old secondary school while I slept.
In the logic of the dream, I was a pupil at school in real time – I was my current age, and I witnessed the sort of building refurbishments that were so cruelly mis-treated by my peers during my teenage years.
On the way to a Science lesson, I loudly shouted down the corridor that I had ‘no fucking timetable’, which brought chuckles from Mr. Farrell, and I enjoyed the anarchy that my 23 years of age seemingly afforded as I went unpunished. I wondered what other japery capery I could get up to, before being ushered into a Science lab along with other pupils, all my age.
Prospective new students from junior schools followed us in, viewing the establishment to see if it was right for their sons and daughters. No doubt they would’ve been impressed by Mr. Farrell’s needless xenophobia when he said that the lesson wouldn’t start until his ‘bloody useless Lithuanian assistant’ arrived.
Due to the throng of families blocking the door, there was a notable scuffle as another visitor tried to squeeze his way into the room. I then glance over to be greeted with a winning smile from formerly the greatest football player in the world, and the greatest proponent of the pre-match seizure, Ronaldo.
Refusing to kow-tow to educational etiquette, I slide out of the room in pursuit of the buck-toothed wonder, to audible gasps of jealousy from my peers. In the corridor I bother him for an autograph and ask him if he can make it out to ‘Luke’. He pronounced it ‘Lyuuke’. What a maverick! What a moment!
To my disappointment, his handwriting, by some quirk of fate, is precisely the same as mine. Immediately I worry that this will make the autograph look false. Surely his actual signature will be irrefutable proof that I’ve met the man? Not so. Due to, I can only assume, a mixture of jingoism and extreme arrogance, he signs his name as ‘Brazil’, as if he is some kind of national envoy sent on an ambassadorial mission to Sidcup.
I question the signature, and remind him that his name is not Brazil. This upsets him, and I instantly feel remorse. I know he is a sensitive soul, so I drop it with our respecitve dignities and my bogus-looking signature intact. I leave him by saying “Good luck in getting into the Brazil squad for the World Cup. I think you can do it”. He looks at me with a steely blend of admiration and self-belief that confirms me as one of the most influential orators of this, or any other, century.
I return to the class room and somebody asks me if I got his autograph. I say yes. They do not ask to see it. I awake at this point, thinking that, as long as nobody else asks me to see it, then no-one will doubt it’s authenticity.