Blockmania – A 6th Form Sketch

I was rummaging around in my box the other day, you know the way you do, when I found this little ‘gem’. It’s a script I wrote in 1989 for the 6th Form Review at Biddenham Upper School. It was never performed, because the directors thought it was ‘too long’. Hmm, reading it just now tells me it would last about 3 minutes, but never mind eh? It is now available for your reading pleasure here, unedited, but with annotation in green, to try and explain some basic concepts. It’s supposed to be biting satire, but was only relevant at that school at that time.

[scrippet]

BLOCKMANIA

a sketch

(c) Matthew Petty, 1989

[[original text, with annotations]]

INT: RECEPTION DESK, BIDDENHAM UPPER SCHOOL, BRICKHILL SITE, BEDFORD, BEDFORDSHIRE, UK

a PUPIL approaches the RECEPTION DESK

PUPIL
Hello?

the RECEPTIONIST appears from below the RECEPTION DESK

RECEPTIONIST
YES?! WHADDYA WANT?!
(sweetly)
Er I mean, can I be of assistance?

PUPIL
Yes, I was wondering if it would be possible to speak to Mr Fitzcooperaurence about subjectidoodle. Could you tell me where –

[[Mr Fitzcoopaurence – a very poor contraction of Mr Fitzhugh, the invisible school headmaster, Mrs (Ms?) Cooper, Anne Widdecombe’s evil twin and head of year, and Mr Laurence, a cross between Sir Les Patterson and John Prescott.]]

RECEPTIONIST
(interrupts)
Yes I’ll just send someone to look for him.

PUPIL
Wouldn’t it be easier to for you to tell me where he is so I could go and see him myself?

RECEPTIONIST
Well that depends on where he is, doesn’t it?

PUPIL
Does it?

RECEPTIONIST
Of course it does! I’ll check where he is.

PUPIL
I think he’s in E Block teaching Advanced Taxidermy

RECEPTIONIST
Yes, yes, we are quite capable of knowing where everybody is, we are organised you know.

PUPIL
(to himself)
Really?
(to receptionist)
Why did you say you’d send someone to look for him then?

RECEPTIONIST
(pause – awkward)
Figure of speech

PUPIL
(not convinced)
Mmm.

RECEPTIONIST
(grabs pupil by throat)
Look sonny-boy, you don’t give me lip, and nothing occurs, know what I mean?

PUPIL
(now he’s convinced)
OK!

RECEPTIONIST
Anyway, Mr Fitzcoopaurence is apparently in E Block teaching Advanced Taxidermy.

PUPIL
(sarcastic)
Oh thanks!
(begins to leave)

RECEPTIONIST
Hang on! Where do you think you’re going?

PUPIL
I’m going to see him.

RECEPTIONIST
Not in E Block you’re not – it’s out of bounds.

PUPIL
Oh … why?

RECEPTIONIST
Er … never you mind. Suffice it to say that the main entrance to E Block is a restricted access area with a 200-mile exclusion zone around it.

PUPIL
How am I going to see him then?

RECEPTIONIST
Well, I said the main entrance to E Block is restricted. You could get in the side entrance if you’re lucky. What time is it?

PUPIL
(checks watch)
Half past two in the morning – just about breaktime.
(thumbs up to audience)
Right kids?

[[Because of the school being on two sites, the opposite ends of the town, with some pupils travelling across town first thing in the morning, and staff having to catch an unreliable minibus shuttle between sites between class periods, the school day started at 8am, or 8.30 or something stupid. And there was a 15 minute break between every period, to allow the required travelling. Except it didn’t. It wasn’t enough time. Stupid fucks. This was due to that loathsome piece of Tory shit Kenneth ‘Invertebrate’ Baker forcing the schools to merge.]]

[[OK. A bit of an homage to The Young Ones there.]]

RECEPTIONIST
Ah well you’re not lucky then.They’ll just be turning the fence on.

PUPIL
Fence?

RECEPTIONIST
Electric.

PUPIL
Isn’t there any way I can get into E Block?

RECEPTIONIST
Well you could try and get through D Block.

PUPIL
Try?

RECEPTIONIST
Well, the security measures may stop you.

PUPIL
Measures? What measures?

RECEPTIONIST
Measures, you know, security measures, well alright, Rottweilers. They’re only there as a backup to stop the people who get through the minefield. you’d be surprised how many people walk out the other side. Well, as well as they can with one leg.

PUPIL
How about the roof? I could climb onto the roof and then abseil down.

RECEPTIONIST
I suppose that might be alright, as long as you don’t get in the way of the snipers. You see, they need a clear line of fire down to the quad.

PUPIL
(getting angry)
Look, why can’t I get into E Block the normal way?

RECEPTIONIST
Oh, for Jason’s sake, we can’t just have you swanning around any old place, spreading your social disease, corruption and pop music like the scum you are!

[[Jason Donovan, teen pop sensation and soap star]]

PUPIL
(pause)
Well so long as there’s a good reason.

RECEPTIONIST
Alright, alright, I do have a special service for very eager pupils. I could furnish you with a, erm, permit to get you into any block you choose with suitable discretion. But only if you make it worth my while.

PUPIL
How? Or should I say, “How much?”

RECEPTIONIST
£10

PUPIL
Oh, that’s OK

RECEPTIONIST
AND your Dennis the Menace ring binder.

PUPIL
NO WAY!

[[A lot of people had ring binders with the UK comics here Dennis the Menace and his dog, Gnasher. Not the crappy US one. It was either that or ‘Fido Dido’.]]

RECEPTIONIST
You’ll ruin me, you know. Alright make it £10.

PUPIL
OK here you go
(hands over money)

RECEPTIONIST
And here you go
(brings out crowbar and hands it over.)

PUPIL
Oh great, thanks. Well, I’ll be off to E Block.
(exits)

RECEPTIONIST
(waits for PUPIL to exit, then calls off)
That’s E Block on the other site, by the way.

FIN

[[Ah ha ha ha ha ha]]

[/scrippet]