I have mentioned before that I went to Catholic school for 13 years. I'm not sure that anyone, other than those of us who attended Catholic school for that long *actually* understands what that means. Well, here's your little journey into my world….
-We went to religion class every single day and chapel once a week. And we generally memorized the Ten Commandments once a year and prayed the rosary like, a lot. But we never had a nun for a religion teacher…isn't that odd? We did, however, have a nun for a principal in elementary school and while I never saw her hit anyone with a ruler, I did witness her crushing a few kids' self-esteems now and again. Her big punishment for kids like me who talked and laughed in class when we weren't supposed to was to make us write pages of multiplication tables. And let me tell you—I have that shit down. I can recite my multiplication tables like nobody's business (the Ten Commandments is a whole 'nother story). We used to just write pages of them in our spare time and that way we'd have them stocked up when we got in trouble (no…it wasn't "if", it was "when", trust me…it made sense to keep some on back-up).
-We wore school uniforms. And not cute, hot uniforms like Britney Spears in the "Kiss Me Baby One More Time" video….ugly, walking shorts and oxford cloth shirt uniforms. Our elementary uniforms were white shirts with a sailor collar and a plaid tie and navy shorts. Didja get that?? A FLIPPIN' SAILOR COLLAR!!! Who the hell's idea was that nonsense?!! AND we had the option of wearing culottes…..do they even make culottes anymore?!?! Probably not. It was just us stupid Catholic school kids wearing 'em, so who cares? We seriously wore uniforms until we graduated from high school. Yep…nothing says "All grown up and ready to move away to college" like plaid walking shorts and oxford cloth shirts! On the plus side, you never really had to decide what to wear in the mornings…
-Yes, everything you've ever heard about Catholic school kids being crazy is pretty much true. We got hammered at our 8th grade graduation party off the Old Charter somebody's dad kept in the liquor cabinet. And we refilled it with apple juice and never got caught. Hey—I said "crazy", not "stupid". To this day, I cannot smell Old Charter without being blasted back to junior high…good times. Again, we were in Louisiana, birthplace of that modern miracle known as the "drive-thru daiquiri factory". And everybody's older brother or sister or cousin or third cousin's best friend worked there, so we totally got the hook-up at the drive thru. Cruising the strip in town = pack of Marlboro Lights, family-sized frozen Tom Collins and "Gimme That Nut" jamming on the CD player.
So now I have a friend that's considering putting her oldest daughter (who's in high school) in a Catholic school. Her reasoning? She's struggling with peer pressure issues and she's afraid she's getting in with the wrong crowd.
Um….Catholic school may not be your best option, here….unless she really likes Old Charter? Or Tom Collins?