FICTION UPDATE: BOSWELL FIGGIS IS BACK

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Peter Rolls has generously allowed this blog to carry more stories about Boswell Figgis who was last seen under the kitchen sink.  It is not clear how Boswell’s mother fared at the parents’ evening but Boswell is not one for sitting still.  Weekly installments will follow from the collection of stories entitled Could Do Better.  Under ‘Acknowledgements’ (see slideshow above) Peter writes:  “Acerbic comments in Figgis’s School Report have been lifted shamelessly from my own Reports circa 1943.”

COULD DO BETTER                

Written by Peter Rolls

INTRODUCTION

Boswell Figgis is a 13-year old who is on the edge.  On the edge of growing up, of getting a Grade B in English, and (he hopes) making progress with Melissa Hardiman.

Nobody understands him:  not parents, not sisters, not teachers.  Why should they?  He doesn’t understand himself.  Why should he?  Being 13 is incomprehensible.  The only plus point, he suspects, is that 13 is better than 14.

This week, there were two good things: saving a penalty at football and getting to level 6 on Zorgmeister.  Make it three things, because Spurs won.  A super-good thing was sitting two rows behind MH in the school bus on Monday:  good for a semi-rear profile.

At home (22, Martlesham Drive), things are reasonably OK.  His father is an engineer, his mother works part-time in an art shop.  His sisters, Claire (16) and Lizzie (12) ignore him or scream at him.  Either way is fine by him:  he is an island of calm in a sea of emotional crisis.

At school (Crimpsfield Comprehensive), things are up and down.  Top sets (struggling) in English and Maths.  Might make decent grades in Science, IT and Geography – maybe even in History.  Elsewhere, he has his occasional moments.  Except in French.

In matters of the heart, things are down, down and further down.  Though there have been blissful moments, such as with Jilly Martin (a week of ‘up’) and Elly van Oost (three days) and Boffie O’Toole (three hours) and Vicky Kershaw (never really started).  Plus the girl at the wedding, who he would probably never see again (could last a lifetime).

Figgis is by no means a loser, it’s just that things rarely go according to plan … Dot, dot, dot … Come to think of it, that’s what life is – a series of dots … He is still working out whether it’s worth while trying to join them up.

(Next week:  Seeing the Light)  

 

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