The other day a chum and myself were discussing days of the old schoolyard and life lessons learnt from undertaken subjects.

“Well I know the ins and outs of Irish history,” I supposed. “And all about John Donne’s metaphysical poetry.

“But – even though the extreme nerd in me found it hella interesting – I feel I would’ve been so much better off if I’d had classes instructing how to undertake adult life actions like change light bulbs and pay power bills, along with subjects dedicated to explaining how the government works and lark like that.”

And the more I’ve thought about it since, the stronger I feel that the curriculum needs a massive overhaul.

I think every high school should have compulsory classes on money for one (as in first off, not a single student situation). Teaching teenagers how to budget, what a future life filled with bills and responsibilities will entail, explaining about mortgages and rates and being a homeowner (I’m still in the dark about all that lark). There should be classes teaching one how to drive a manual, check your vehicle’s water and oil gage (ditto) and how to take out insurance policies and what all the lingo translates to. Every day life necessities and skills that all need to know.

I mean I’m 24 and have no inkling at all about a good range of things an adult probably should. Sure, I may be able to drone on for a good hour or so (extremely enthusiastically) about the perils of reality TV and the hegemonic structure of Watties tomato sauce, but ask me my view on a political standpoint that isn’t mainstream media mutilated (though to be fair, I still would probably give a, “Yes, well,” answer, smile vaguely then pop off in the pretence of fetching some object – probably a wine) and I’dbe blank as Westpac with an “L” in it (apologies: horrendous attempt at humour there).

Being awarded dux at Uni three years in a row (sorry to breathe into my own sax) seems to have people under the illusion I am rather intelligent. Ok, I concede in the face of uses and gratification analysis or the class system in New Zealand (because there totally is an undercurrent, don’t try and dispute me) I may be able to hustle out some sound facts and figures. But ask me what the middle buttons on my dashboard do? Fucked if I know (though I actually do now; pressing them all at once is not at all encouraged).

Yes, I think one period a week at the very least titled “Life Lessons” should be on every 15 year old plus’ timetable. Just to make known the parts of life hay can be confusing, sometimes tedious, but downright necessary for adult life.

Maybe if CHS or good old Bara had offered the like I wouldn’t be needing to run to Henio every time an “adult” occurrence occurs and I don’t have a clue what to do or how to deal.

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