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BOTD 3-16-15: Wallis and Tiddles - A Pi Beta Production

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Jack


Admin
Wallis And Tiddles
A PiBeta Production

You are the Housemaster of a boarding house in a UK independent school in the late 1950s. The boys are subject to corporal punishment for any misdemeanours with either gymshoe or cane. The dormitories are unheated and the boys are required to sleep with the windows open unless there is driving rain or snow.

Three of the boys:  David Wallis, Peter Henderson, and James Chadwick - All 13
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It is early January and very cold. Five of the six boys in the dormitory have managed to equip themselves with makeshift hot water bottles (pop bottles filled under the hot tap in the washroom). The sixth boy, David Wallis, instead has cajoled the House cat, Tiddles, into his bed and is cuddling up to it.

Tiddles
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You enter the dormitory to find that the window is closed and order the boy nearest to the window, who happens to be David, to get out of bed to open it. Once out of the bed, you notice movement under the bedclothes as the cat, your cat, moves further under the covers.

How do you react?


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David M. Katz


Marshall
What I should have done:

1. Tell the boys to keep the window closed.
2. Send the matron for hot teas all around
3. Find some portable electric heaters
4. Send matron for some woolen socks and heavier pajamas
5. After every one is warming up I will then take Tiddles back to my study

-------------

Since I am the type who makes boys freeze while they sleep then I will actually do this:

1. All the boys except Wallis get four with the gym shoe for having the window closed
2. Wallis gets six of the best with the cane for taking my cat
3. Tiddles and I will retire to my warm study


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Kat


Editor Extraordinaire
I think this thing about open windows was some sort of weird 1950s idea about needing fresh air. If I'm a person of my time, I probably believe I'm looking after the boys' health, while at the same time developing their character. I hope I have enough compassion, however, to open the window only the tiniest crack.

Tiddles is an independent agent, as all cats must be. If Tiddles has chosen to sleep with Wallis, I must respect his decision. I do think it would be a good idea to make sure that the boys' beds have adequate blankets and that all the boys have proper hot water bottles. I'll ask the matron to see to that. I don't think even in the 1950s a boarding school should unite the unfriendlier qualities of HMS Bounty and a concentration camp.

Kat

StevieWeeks


Trailboss
Um... let's see if I've got this straight...

I'm the housemaster...

David Wallis is in his bed and tiddling my cat...

Surely that was illegal in 1950...

I think I'll beat the boy for practicing bestiality upon my cat and all...

He's just lucky the cat hasn't clawed his tiddler and all...

Stevie...

David M. Katz


Marshall
StevieWeeks wrote:Um... let's see if I've got this straight...

I'm the housemaster...

David Wallis is in his bed and tiddling my cat...

Surely that was illegal in 1950...

I think I'll beat the boy for practicing bestiality upon my cat and all...

He's just lucky the cat hasn't clawed his tiddler and all...

Stevie...

Shocked Shocked

ROTFLMAO! Laughing

Embarassed Embarassed


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Stone Man


Marshall
David M. Katz wrote:
Since I am the type who makes boys freeze while they sleep then I will actually do this:

1. All the boys except Wallis get four with the gym shoe for having the window closed
2. Wallis gets six of the best with the cane for taking my cat
3. Tiddles and I will retire to my warm study

If I'm to keep with the times, I have to go with this version of DMK's way of handling things.

I do prefer his first suggestion, but think it unlikely.



Stevie lol! lol!

ivor


Marshall
I'm inclined to go with Katz's answer, although I'm not entirely convinced that some of the boys wouldn't have complained to their parents about the sleeping conditions.

On the other hand there is a young family living opposite me where the bedroom windows of both the parents and children are always open to some extent at night, Although as they do have thick curtains I'm not sure how much air actually gets in. They also have their living room windows open very frequently even on cold days, so it would seem there are still some believers in the benefits of fresh air.

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squarecutter


Sherrif
n real life I was at boarding school in the 1970s and one winter term the heating failed on the top fllor. It was horrible even with the windows closed . We were in a big tudor manor house with a Victorian extension and I have never been so cold for so long.The school bursar leant her fan heater which got shared around some of us an I wore several layers in bed. Don't think it would be allowed now.


I am clearly an unfeeling brute so yes I agree with Katz on what I must do except

I think I should also take Tiddles to my study and give him 4 with the slipper for wandering into a boys bed like that and clearly being a homosexual cat... 

Oh alright scratch that part.

Pi Beta


Deputy
An explanation. This is a real life episode in the life of the school I attended reported to me by one of the other boys in that small dormitory. It was in 1959 and there was no heating in most of the dormitories at the school at that time. After the war, and with materials in short supply, most building work concentrated on repairing and replacing the housing lost during the bombing. Few homes would have then had heated bedrooms, so parens would be likely to be less than sympathetic to their son's moans about being cold. In another of the boarding houses, the top floor dormitories' roofs consisted purely of the roof tiles - now those really were cold and that Housemaster did ensure boys had hot water bottles (and ensured all visiting school Governors were taken up to see the situation!). The first of the Houses built with central heating throughout was completed in 1959 and was built for the Junior School (Age 8-13). Now much of the boarding accommodation is single room and some is en-suite. How times change!

Open windows were reckoned to help reduce the spread of disease. When in 1953 or '54 I contracted TB in my neck glands, my treatment consisted mainly of rest in the open air at home (unless it was raining) and a diet that, to me, seemed to consist of egg custard - the thought of which, even now, makes me gag.

I'll not tell yet what happened to the lad in real life. That can wait a day or two.

StevieWeeks


Trailboss
Although my father was normally a day boy at his school during the war, there were occasions over the years upon which he was temporarily boarded - I know that is contrary to what my stories say -anyway, he did recall instances in which the pee froze in the potty under his bed and all... let alone the water in the jugs and ewers for washing. That is, they had to break up the ice in their washing water before they could use it...

And no, I am not exaggerating.

If you read the descriptions of Joey's house carefully, you will see that the bedroom shared by the boys is also unheated - which was normally the case in two up, two down houses... and in fact, unheated bedrooms were found in much larger, middle class homes as well...

Many of the rooms in Glossop Manor would also have been unheated as well...

Stevie.

Emlyn Morgan


Trailboss
Old Berber saying: Only close the tent flaps in a sandstorm.

Anyway I'm going to whack them.

Padraig


Trailboss
It depends if a closed window usually earns a whacking. If so, they are toast.

But it should bring me to senses when even a cat crawls deeper under a blanket because of the cold.

Pi Beta


Deputy
As I explained, this was a real life situation. According to my informant, the Housemaster took no disciplinary action - leaving the cat where it had chosen to crawl while he tried to hide a wry smile at the lad's "enterpriise".

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