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The Secret Diary of Sherlock Holmes, Aged 14 (Genius)

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Wednesday, March 8
Did a spot of ‘O’ level revising after gross dinner. I’ve got the lousy stinking mocks to do when I get back to school. I’m doing Geography, Chemistry, Physics, and Biology at ‘O’ level and Woodwork and English at CSE. It’s all a bit waste of time though, because intellectuals like me don’t need qualifications to get jobs or worldly success: it just comes automatically to us. It is because of our rarity value. The only problem is getting influential people to recognize that you are an intellectual. So far nobody has recognized it in me, yet I have been using long words like “multi-structured” in my daily intercourse for ages.

Tuesday, March 14
Must up my intellectual game if I expect to be recognized. Have purchased a jumbo-sized poster of the Periodical Table of the Elements and tacked it up to my bedroom wall. Bloody Mycroft came in and looked all superior. “Really, Sherlock,” he sneered fatly, “don’t you have the trifling thing memorized yet?” I just glowered at him from my bed. All geniuses are persecuted in our youth – it’s what makes us so mendacious later in life.

Thursday, March 23
Went to Irene’s to watch the evening news on her family’s satellite television since her parents are away in Algeria or Austria or similar. We often have intellectual discussions about World Events while we lie in her parents’ bed and smoke cigarettes. We intellectuals must band together. Irene is very dedicated to using her genius to help the common people. Our friendship is based on my admiration of her political beliefs, and not at all on her access to satellite television and cigarettes.

Sunday, March 26
Have decided that I am an existentialist nihilist. I told mother and explained that she would have to buy me some new clothes to accommodate my new philosophical leanings, but she just laughed and said “You’ll grow out of it.” It is hell living in this Stalinist Oppression.

Monday, March 27
I asked my mother if she would go to town and buy me three tee-shirts. One black, one white and one grey. When she came back I set about the tee-shirts with a pair of scissors. Father took this to be a symptom of escalating madness. I tried to explain that it was how we in the teenage sub-culture are dressing now. But he couldn’t take it in. When mother saw the rags she went pale and almost said something before her Stalinist Oppression kicked in and she shut her mouth. I think I am an anarchist now.

Tuesday, April 11
This morning I spent half an hour in the bathroom studying my nose after the new boy at school, John Watson, asked me if I realized I was a Dustin Hoffman look-alike. I hadn’t realized that my nose had grown to such an abnormal size. But the more I looked at it the more I could see that it is huge. Mycroft bashed on the door and shouted something snarky and elitist. But I am a man of the people, and paid him no mind. When I got downstairs I asked my mother if I reminded her of Dustin Hoffman. She said, “You should be so lucky, dear.”

Friday, April 14
Went round to John’s and was astounded to hear that his parents are trying to immigrate to Italy! Do they never stop moving? They’ve only just arrived! Perhaps they are secretly members of the criminal class. Anyway, how could any English person want to live abroad? Foreigners can’t help living abroad because they were born here, but for an English person to go is ridiculous, especially now that sun-tan lamps are so readily available. John agrees with me. He asked me if he could stay behind and live at our house. I agreed, of course, but warned him about the poor standard of living due to the Monster Brother Who Lives Upstairs. He said he would bring headphones with him and wear them around the house to avoid having to acknowledge his presence.

Wednesday, April 19
Mother has purchased a Family Health Encyclopaedia and left it “casually” around the place. She is so pathetically transparent. I started reading a section called ‘Testes and Sperm’ and was astonished to discover that my personal testes make several hundred million sperm a day. A DAY! Where do they all go? I know some leak out in the night and some I help to leak out occasionally, but what happens to the countless billions that are left swarming around? It makes the mind boggle, not to mention the testes.

Thursday, April 20
Read the whole of ‘Sex and Reproduction’ in bed last night and spent a bit of time thinking about the new boy, John, for some reason. I find that my brain sometimes works in such complicated intellectual ways that even I do not know what it is doing. Woke up to find a few hundred million sperm had leaked out. Still, it will give the remaining sperm room to wag their tails a bit.

Friday, April 21
By a massive stroke of luck we did the storage of human semen in Biology today. I was able to give a full and frank account of the life cycle of the sperm. Mr. Stamford the Biology teacher was dead impressed. After the lesson he said, “Holmes, I don’t know if you’ve got a natural genius for biology or an obsessive interest in things sexual. If the former, I suggest you pursue it. If the latter perhaps a chat with the school psychology service may be of use.” He called me a genius! I did not smile at my long-sought recognition, but assumed my usual air of intellectual superiority. I assured Mr. Stamford that my interest was purely scientific.

Tuesday, May 1
I keep getting anxiety attacks every time I think about ‘O’ levels. I know I’m going to fail. My overriding problem is that I’m too intellectual; I am constantly thinking about things, like: was God married? And: if Hell is other people, is Heaven empty? These thoughts overload my brain, causing me to forget facts. Such as: the average rainfall in the average Equatorial Forrest and other pointless stuff.

Saturday, May 6
Spent the day in bed revising for ‘O’ levels. My father ordered three (three!) separate salesmen out of the front garden this morning. He said, “My son is upstairs studying for a better future, and your constant clamouring for attention is distracting him!” Actually, I was measuring my thing at the time, but their noise was distracting. I kept losing my place on the tape-measure.

Sunday, May 7
I’ve just realized that I have never seen a dead body or a real female nipple. This is what comes of living in a cul-de-sac.

Monday, May 8
I asked Irene to show me one of her nipples but she refused. I tried to explain that it was in the interests of widening my life experience and not at all the sordid type of masculinist exploitation her radical feminist mind must be thinking, but she buttoned her cardigan up to her neck and went home.

Tuesday, May 9
Received the following letter from Irene this morning:
I am writing to terminate our friendship. We were once united in our appreciation for scientific principles and our shared passion for cataloguing historical knots of seafaring cultures, but you have changed. You have become morbidly fixated with the physical, and our previously transcendent mental communing has been degraded. Your request to look at my left nipple last night finally convinced me that our friendship must end, for it is quite against my feminist principles to exhibit my body.
Do not contact me,
Why oh why did I ask Irene to show me her nipple? Anybody’s nipple would have done.

Wednesday, May 10
I have written Irene a short note:
Irene Darling,
What can I say? I was crude and clumsy and should have known you would run from me like a startled faun. Please, at least grant me an audience and let me apologize in person.
Yours in feminist solidarity,
I think it hits the right note. I got the “startled faun” bit from one of Mycroft’s pornographic novels.

Thursday, May 11
Rained solidly all day. How can it rain “solidly”? What a strange mistress is the English language.

Saturday, May 20
It is 11 days since Irene spoke to me. I am floundering at sea in a desert of ignoramuses. I miss her! I miss her! I miss her! Molly is, frankly, a poor substitute. She is very kind but will never understand the intellectual torment I suffer on a daily basis. Word around school is that Irene is taking comfort in the arms of a sixth-former named Kate and has become a lesbian. I can’t say I am surprised as her lack of sexual interest in me during our friendship always seemed suspicious. Molly says they spend all their time together talking about higher mathematics.

Monday, May 22
John has started a Gay Club at school. He claims he’s not gay, but is in it for the principle of the thing. He has lovely principles. He is the only member so far, but it will be interesting to see who else joins. I noticed his sister Harriet hovering around the poster looking worried.

Wednesday, May 24
The headmaster Mr. Scruton has ordered the closure of the Gay Club, saying that he and the school governors couldn’t sanction the use of the school gym for “immoral purposes.” John pretended to be innocent. He said, “But sir, the Gay Club is for pupils who want to be frisky, frolicsome, lively, playful, sportive, vivacious or gamesome during the dinner break. What is immoral about gaiety?” Mr. Scruton said, “John, the word gay has changed its meaning over the past years. It now means something quite different.” John said, “What does it mean, sir?” Scruton started swearing and messing about with his pipe, and not answering, so John let him off the hook by saying: “Sorry, sir! I can see that I will have to get an up-to-date dictionary.” I think I might love him.

Monday, June 12
Mycroft put on his new straight-legged jeans today. He looks dead stupid in them. Talk about mutton dressed as lamb. He looks like a stewing steak dressed as “flash fry.”

Tuesday, June 20
John has taken up roller-skating. He has asked me to meet him at the roller-skating rink on Saturday. Molly says that he has asked me on a date. I am dead nervous. I don’t know how to roller-skate – let alone make love.

Thursday, June 22
Borrowed Molly’s disco-skates and practiced skating on the pavement in our cul-de-sac. I was okay so long as I had a privet hedge to grab at, but I dreaded skating past the open-plan gardens where there is nothing to hold on to. I wanted to wear the skates in the house so I could develop confidence, but my father moaned about the marks the wheels made on the floor in the kitchen. The Stalinist Oppression continues. Don’t they know what impact this could have on my future love life?

Friday, June 23
Got up at 6am for more roller-skating practice. Mrs. Hudson shouted abuse from next door because of the early morning noise, so I went to the kids’ park and practiced there, but I had to give up. There was so much broken glass and dog muck lying about that I feared for the ball-bearings of Molly’s skates. I went home, had a bath, washed my hair and cut my toe nails, etc. Then I put my entire wardrobe of clothes on to the bed and tried to decide what to wear. At 10:30 I rang Molly and asked her what youths wore at roller-skating rinks. She said, “They wear red satin side-vent running shorts, sleeveless satin vests, white knee socks, Sony Walkman earphones and one gold earring.” I thanked her, put the phone down, and went to have a look at my clothes. The nearest I could get were my black PE shorts, my white string vest and my grey knee socks. I am too intellectual to have a Sony Walkman and I don’t have my ears pierced so I couldn’t manage the last two items, but I hope that John doesn’t mind too much. Must stop, it’s time to go.

Saturday, June 24
That’s the first and last time I go roller-skating. John is an expert. He went whizzing off at 40 mph, only stopping now and then to do the splits in mid-air. He did slow down sometimes to say “Let go of the barrier, Sherlock,” but he didn’t stay long enough for me to divert him into having a longer conversation. I had hoped my mental superiority would seduce him sexually, but I see now that this may not be a workable strategy at a roller-rink.

Sunday, June 25
John came round this morning to apologize for something – I wasn’t altogether clear what, since I was busy looking at his lips at the time. They are as beautiful as supple raspberries but in a manly sort of way that makes my stomach feel funny. I hope I am not coming down with something. We had a dead good half-French, half-English kiss, then John whispered “Sherlock, teach me about human biology.” It was the most romantic sentence I have ever heard.