Never mind Cha Cha Changes Emily, what about Pas de Puberty? By Trevor Plumbly
Okay Em: I read it and whilst I realised the importance of the event to you and indeed to all of the fair sex, I couldn’t help thinking that you’ve had 40 years to ready yourself for the biological time-bomb while I only had about 13 to prepare for nature’s wake-up call to teenage boys. It’s not like ageing you know, you can’t just roll with the flow, it’s as swift and painful as a kick in the privates, if you’ll pardon the analogy.
One day I was reasonably normal with more interest in my mates and cricket than the opposite sex; then it hit! Overnight my vocal range floated and I could do Tiny Tim to John Wayne in one sentence; my complexion erupted like boiling porridge and I developed a stutter trying to talk to girls.
In short, I was a physical and emotional bombsight, with testosterone to spare, lead in my pencil so to speak, but no paper to write on. Netball became far more interesting to watch than soccer and even Spotty Simpson’s sister started to look a bit tasty (desperate days indeed).
Looking back Em, I feel righteously short-changed: you had make-up, I had acne, you had fashions, I had a 1950s school uniform. With coiffed and highlighted hair and stylish gear, you probably cut quite a figure; I had rodent-coloured, basin-cut hair, knobbly knees and overall looked about as sexually attractive as a giant pencil with a skin complaint. So come off it Em, your Cha Cha Change was pretty private and personal whereas my Pas de Puberty was a piece of public entertainment enjoyed by groups of your mob, clad in gym slips and navy blue school knickers, whispering and giggling at every social fumble. Nature, I suggest, doesn’t just target women of a certain age for a bit of aggro, it makes bloody sure teenage boys cop a bit too.
I think you have the wrong person. She didn’t do stylish anything – not hair, clothes and as for a figure…… who?
Reassuring to know, that even when my father is in Addenbrooke’s ICU, my mother still retains a sense of humour!