Tag Archives: leaving cert

On The Brink

The Leaving Certificate is the final, state-run examination which marks the end of our school cycle. After this students, depending on their results and upon their wishes, can go on to university or some other college, or out into the world of work, or, as it is known now in Ireland, unemployment.

Tinson2 starts his Leaving Certificate exams tomorrow.

He is eighteen now, and stands almost at a door between two worlds, one foot still in childhood, the other stepping towards the door into adulthood. After tomorrow that foot will be through the door and th other foot will have lifted from the ground to follow it. He will still be a teenager, wonderful and bewildering, daft and then brilliant, filling you with frustration and then with joy.

The ultra-laid-back manner which makes him such a lovely person has not been a great advantage when it came to studying and preparing for these exams, and I worry for him and for how he might get on.

But whatever happens he is still our magnificent, maddening, charming, baffling, super son, and we love him for that, for the amazing person that he is.

All the best tomorrow, my son and my friend.

About A Boy

Yesterday was Leaving Cert results day, so my post should have been about Tinson1 and how he got on, but hey, I had mental issues to write about, and I don’t have a whole category called “It’s All About Me” for nothing.

Anyway, he did fine, he got 470 points. I got 26, which gives the impression that he’s 18 times cleverer than I was, but of course the system has changed.  Back when I did it (in quill and ink, on parchment) there were simple A’s, B’s and C’s, and you got 5 points for an A, 4 for a B, etc. Now there is A1, A2, A3, etc, and the whole thing is much more complicated. Funnily, if you use the simplified version then he got exactly the same number of each grade as I did all those years ago, though in very different subjects.

Anyway, he has enough points for Trinity (just down the road from my office. “Hey, we’ll be able to do lunch”, I said yesterday, just to see his attempts at hiding the flash of horror that shot across his face), though not for the Theoretical Physics course he was thinking of. This means that my recurring nightmare, where the world explodes in a fiery molten ball while he stands in his lab going “Mwa-ha-ha-ha-ha!!!” (he’s not laughing specifically at you there, Mwa), will not now take place.

He is planning now on taking General Science. As a scientist there are many directions in which his career might go – he might invent a small device which will make cars run on baby-sick (a never-dwindling resource), or he might become one of those No-Shit-Sherlock scientists who, after two years of research, produce a report stating that men spend more time than women thinking about boobs.

Either way, that’s all in the future. As for today, he’s delighted with himself, and we’re as proud of him as usual.