DWJ sans frontiers

Dorian E. Gray israfel at eircom.net
Fri Jun 10 13:43:21 EDT 2005

Minnow said...
> Well, there *was* anaesthetic, though it tasted absolutely vile and wore
> off very fast and the needle used to insert it was huge and painful.  I
> reckoned I had been deserving, but the reward was unexpected.  Usually it
> was 6d per tooth, and at that I was a lot better off than Pete in *The Big
> Six* who got thruppence a tooth.

You got anaesthetic?  Wow!  Mother tells horror stories about fillings and 
extractions involving an upright chair and no anaesthetic and having to be 
sat upon.  (This would be probably mid-1950s, in Northern Ireland.)
>>> and I was staggered by the enormous wealth I
>>> suddenly possessed.  I remember that I bought a really good penknife for
>>> 4/6d and then spent about a month wondering what to get with the rest: 
>>> it
>>> was too much to spend on sweets, and I didn't have any really important
>>> yearnings for anything but a good penknife.  (I've still got it.)
>>What *did* you finally spend the last sixpence on?  Or can you remember?
> 15/6, not a mere 6d,

Ugh, sorry, yeah, brainfart there.  Five shillings per tooth, not five 
shillings total.  Silly me.

> Still got that, too, in spite of everyone's best endeavours to lose it in
> the lawn according to Pratchett's Theory of Lawn Composition.

Poo.  All of our Lego got given to our younger cousins.
>>I'm trying to think what I would have spent a Whole Ten Pounds on (which 
>>what my equivalent at that age would have been) when I was 9 or 10.
>>Probably books. :-)
> Ah, books were provided by the Management, thousands of them and no holds
> barred (though I think my mother hid the Rabelais at one point because
> she'd seen me watching my father laughing over it -- I certainly couldn't
> find it when I went and looked; it was probably in the original French so
> I'm not sure why she would have bothered, though) and the local library 
> had
> lots too.  I didn't really need to own books, because once I'd read them a
> couple of times I had them anyway.

Oh, I was never short of books.  Books for Xmas, books for birthdays, books 
bought randomly because Books Are Good, books from the library, books from 
the school library, books from my parents' shelves...but I have always been 
firmly convinced that there is No Such Thing As Too Many Books.  So a sudden 
windfall would probably have been spent on yet more books.  Or perhaps, if 
it had been a year or two later (i.e. when I was 11 or so), I might have 
gone for boot-skates, which all my friends had and which I desperately 
wanted instead of the strap-over-the-shoes variety I had.


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