Quantock School Alumni

Skip to content

Main Menu

The Unique Language of Quantock School

Quantock School Colloquialisms L-Z

Lush - Nice, lovely, beautiful, tasty, etc. A word used to describe anything from an attractive female (until 1986 a creature seen by Quantock pupils only on television or on the pages of an improper publication) to food (that is, everything edible from outside Wally's kitchen). Usually pronounced 'Leurrsh' for added emphasis. Of course, no-one had ever told us that telling a girl that she is "lush" may well earn one a slap in some circles - especially when one might happen to be in a pub and said female has had one too many. It is indeed no wonder that Quantock pupils could never fathom the female mind.

Peanut - An irritating attack involving a swift tug of the victim's necktie. The intention was not to strangle the victim, but to cause intense annoyance. In the main, victims of this attack were those who had a variant of the Granger (qv.) knot, as its rather simple construcution allowed it to be tightened immeasurably by applying a swift yank. The term "peanut" was derived from the shape of the knot after a successful attack. Of course, the only way of combatting a peanut attack successfully - bar grabbing your prospective assailant in time and applying a spam (qv.) or a crusty (qv.) - was to learn how to tie a traditional double-Windsor. Thanks to Blakey for reminding me of this - although I was one of the few who could actually tie a double-Windsor.

Posting - This has nothing to do with mail, but with the rather gruesome practice of holding an individual spreadeagled and squeezing his sensitive parts against a post, usually a rugby post or more than usually one of the posts on the goal in the sports hall. Guaranteed to make one sound like Aled Jones for the rest of their lives.

Prep - Short for Preparation, evening study akin to what in the ordinary world would have been called 'homework'.

Rats tail - A towel carefully folded and rolled for the purposes of delivering a Caddywhacks (qv.) A good rats tail didn't come apart affording a disinct advantage over someone using the 'twirled towel' method of delivery. (Credits: WW-W)

Scramble - this was often heard being chanted as a few fizzy cola bottles or a biscuit were thrown into the air so the individual can watch his frenzied dorm mates make fools of themselves as they 'scramble' around the floor for the pieces of foodstuffs that had been thrown - or what remained of them. (Thanks to Darren Weeks for reminding me of this bizarre practice). I myself remember that this trick worked rather well with Maltesers which, if thrown correctly, would end up under the bed. The bed would suddenly be looking like a struggling centipede, and after a few frantic seconds the "winner" would emerge with his prize - a Malteser covered in God-knows-what.

Scuds - Underpants. I myself am not sure what approach was taken to the use of this word during the Gulf Crisis, and Saddam Hussein's use of crappy ex-Soviet 'Scud' missiles.

Shoulder tap This irritating practice involved reaching around the person sitting next to you and tapping them on the shoulder situated diametrically opposed to the shoulder situated closest to you. This more often than not resulted in the victim looking over the upper arm in the direction in which the tap was received - only to find the space suspiciously unoccupied. After many years of this a veteran of the School would always, upon being taped on the shoulder, look over the "counter-intuitive shoulder" (as it were) so as to disappoint the would be perpetrator. However as all things did at Quantock, it evolved into the situation were people started to tap you on the "correct shoulder" to create a double bluff situation. (Thanks to Blakey again for being sad enough to remember this in detail...)

Sock - A truly irritating and timeless jape applied to those who had just picked up their weekly laundry, usually applied to jubs in order to avoid the beating you would have got had you tried it on someone older or bigger than you. One would shout "you've dropped a sock" or simply "sock", and watch the the victim scanning the area around him like a madman, while at the same time trying to hold onto his pile of laundry. Of course, the ultimate goal was to see the pile of laundry fall to the floor, and so the trick was best employed on those who had a pile so high that they could hardly see over it. Thanks to Mike Blake and Jim Bugler for reminding me of this one.

Spamming - The act of striking someones forehead with the aim of maximising the surface area of hand to forehead contact, ie by trying to use the greatest part of your palm and fingers. Logically, those most obvious targets for spamming were those individuals with large foreheads, who more often than not were also abused by cries of "Spam", or a peculiar and somewhat repetitive little ditty that went "spam, spam, spam". This all of course had nothing to do with cans of processed meat, and the term was in existence long before the concept of chain e-mail advertising.

Spud - Thickhead, fool, idiot. A term of insult derived from the colloquial term for potato, and usually directed at members of the 'C' form and anyone else considered serially stupid. The premier bearer of this label in my time at the school was Mark Williams, who was known to most as "Spuddy". Calling someone a "spud" was not as offensive as calling them a 'flid' (qv.)

Suck - an individual who made it their life's mission to cosy up to the teachers, prefects or both.

Wedgie - The act of someone grabbing the top of the victims scuds (qv.) and yanking them upwards in a swift, single movement. The results were either (a) botched completely or (b) extremely painful. Of course, success was dependent on the element of surprise.