Since I’ve been subbing in Australian High Schools for a little while, I thought I might share some observations. This is about the lovely animals themselves….the adolescents. I hesitate to call them students as many clearly don’t deserve or desire that label. This is what I’ve gathered from studying and interacting with the local fauna.
Cursing is normal. I don’t think I’ve ever heard d*&%head and C*&t uttered so many times consecutively in my life. I mean, I know that all teenagers/people curse- but my god. Also, they are quick to point out my language deficiencies. Once they have figured out that I’m from North America, they are quick to point out that they a) can’t understand me because they are Australian or b) are at the ready to point out any difference in terminology. I have gotten particularly strong laughter/taunting for my use of the words: backpack and drinking fountain. “Miss, OMG do you mean bag and bubbler?” guffaw guffaw. Conversely, some of their terms crack me up. For example:
- Rubber- It’s an eraser, but hearing year 7 students ask each other for a rubber never ceases to amuse me
- Rub Out- To Erase…but c’mon
Despite the fact that it has been winter, I can count on one hand the number of girls I’ve seen who wear pants rather than skirts. It is clearly not cool to be warm in a pair of pants. Instead, the cool kids wear skirts that have been hemmed to skanky perfection, and subsequently freeze their asses off. As for boys, it’s the hair that’s an issue. Rat tails bleached orange are a hot look.
Most students cannot drive. Year 12’s contentedly blab away about drinking themselves to regurgitation–and it’s all legal. Which reminds me, no topic is off limits for them. Students are not fazed at all to describe all sorts of debauchery within earshot of other classmates, and me-standing one foot away.
God forbid you let sip that you are American. The boys and girls will pause the Justin Bieber and Eminem blasting away on their ipods to show their disgust for you. They will then return to their friends, and excitedly discuss Glee and Twilight. Love the contradictions.
No fear. no respect. no motivation. Most kids are lovely, but the shockers… yikes. Anyways, I’ll revisit this topic in detail at a later date. But before I leave it, I must share some malicious thoughts. While they are yelling at me I often think, “listen kid, you are not smart, not attractive and your personality is crap- life will be rough for you-enjoy that” Seriously, they need to know this.