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Diary - Drop-kicked into touch

Himself and I went to the Rugby Club Hallowe'en Ball. He said I had been ignoring him recently. I was apparently too busy with Education to notice him. I had noticed him enough in the preceding 20 years and I hadn't always liked what I had noticed.

It was an evening made in hell. To compound matters, some of the guests were teachers and - worse still - secondary heads. I cannot stand one of them in particular, and I know the feeling is mutual. The table plan confirmed my worst nightmare. The man himself was at our table, and almost within earshot.

As the wine flowed, his voice got louder and louder. His sneer got sneakier and his entire demeanour was one of contemptuous disdain. I caught the odd word wafting over the table - "clueless", "vague" and "weak" were some of the more audible epithets, and I guessed he was providing an assessment of my first few months in office.

The final straw came with the comment "anyway, what do you expect from a primary heidie", as he guffawed into his port. Where was my Champion when I needed him? Slumped at the bar. Almost lights out time.

My tormentor was now in overdrive and I knew I needed a shining knight. Enter Gregor. Gregor was my sister's boy and a rising star of the first 15, who happened to have a crush on Auntie Bridget. Remember Anne Bancroft's approach to Dustin Hoffman in The Graduate? Gregor and his pals were all for rugby club juvenile japes and quickly agreed to sort my little problem out.

I waited until the Secondary Smarmy Swine staggered to the loo. Gregor's mobile buzzed. Mrs Swine was concerned over the length of her husband's absence. "Hope nothing's wrong?" I asked sarcastically. Mrs Swine asked the guy sitting next to her to check the toilets. He returned roaring with laughter and shouted on all "the lads" to come and see what had happened.

There, suspended from one of the cubicle doors was the man himself. They had dressed him in nappies and he had a giant lollipop stuck to his lips. His hands were tied and he had an Iggle Piggle dolly tucked under his arm. Tied round his neck was a placard and on it, written in lipstick not a million shades away from my own, were the words "Happy Hallowe'en".

Why Gregor and his pals had picked on Mr Swine, we'll never know; but, after all, boys will be boys, especially in a rugby club.

Mr Swine never darkened the door of the rugby club again. At the next secondary heads meeting, he was quite subdued and withdrawn. I may be female, fifty, feisty and frumpy, as he thought, but forgiving I am not.

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