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Friday, June 25, 2010

Writer's Journal (exercise): The Getting of Wisdom

Boring book, I thought. Didm’t see why it was such an Australian classic. And the movie wasn’t much better. The only intersting thing about it was when my stepsister told me it was based on PLC in Melbourne, where she went to school. She was another boarding school child like my own Mum. Anway, she didn’t seem to have got much wisdom from going to PLC. My stepmother later sent her to a finishing school with a domestic emphasis, called Invergowrie. There Merrie learned how to drink and smoke, and how to wear thick tights under your long evening gown in winter (they had to dress for dinner, you see).

Not much wisdom to be got there either. Mind you, I wasn't much wiser with my State School education. I was unwise enought to ask Merrie to teach me how to smoke so that I could be sophisticated. Took me 30 years to kick that habit. I don't suppose it made me look sophisticated anyway. It's very hard to bring that off the way they did in the old movies — even when I used a long  cigarette holder and smoked Black Russian Sobranies. I now rather think I probably only looked silly.

The getting of wisdom, I think, has to come with time and experience. If I’ve got any, it arrived by dint of growing older and having stuff happen to me, and having to figure out ways to deal with it. 

I doubt if school is the place where you find it. You get information, some if it useful.

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