One rainy afternoon my nine year old classmates and I huddled around a boxy television set and waited eagerly as our teacher loaded a VHS into the player and fumbled around for the play button.
The video, we were told, was to be the first in a series of sex education videos that would educate us about female and male "parts", personal hygiene and how babies are really made.
I don't know about you, but when I think about sex ed, I imagine educative materials sensitively designed to help kids understand what all their "parts" are for and when to use them. Wisely. And with confidence.
But clearly, I had nothing to do with the making of the video we watched that day.
The one introducing me, aged nine, to the basics of one's sexual reproductive parts.
The one that was going to leave me feeling not at all freaked out.
You mean the one called:
"Some of your bits ain't nice."
North Americans don't know about this, and are currently gasping and exclaiming what the hell kind of education system exposes nine year old kids to that kind of message?
But I'll bet every English person reading this is nodding their head and thinking oh yeah! I remember that weird little cartoon with the teenagers pointing at each others "bits". Because the thing is, I'm pretty sure any person in England that attended school in 1984 was subjected to this delight.
We sat - me and my little friends who barely knew what a penis was, let alone what it was for - open mouthed and aghast by perhaps the most cringeworthy and fascinating thing a nine year old had ever seen.
School girl is seen running screaming home to her mother... Muuuum! Waaaahahaha! They said my bits aren't nice! I'm so ashamed! I don't want anyone to ever see my bits! I think I may need therapy for the rest of my life to recover from this! Waaaah!
The thing is, I'm sure the video contained some very useful information about personal hygiene, or whatever it was about. But all I remember is the freaking title: Some of your bits ain't nice.
And the voice of an annoying gangly teenage cartoon character singing the words, still, like I just saw it yesterday.
Oh the trauma. It will be with me forever.
And, in case you think I'm making all this up for the sake of titillating blog material, here's the proof it does in fact exist.
It's a miracle I'm so well adjusted today. Twitching and telling husband to get off bits that are not nice.