Public gobstew.

Technology shapes and changes the world we live in – this is fact.

But I can guarantee that nobody on earth is more grateful for the invention of the mobile phone and the iPod, than bus and coach drivers.

Back in the day, school trips used to be bizarre and unpredictable things that seemed to loom out of the banal normality of school life, like ridiculous tw@tshadows forming on the edge of a crap forest.

Inevitably, there would be a massive stupid scuffle for the back seat.

The Back Seat.

Where children with older brothers and Dr. Marten boots would kick the massive sh!t out of the kids who got free school meals or irrelevantly wore a sticking plaster over one lens of their National Heath specs.

Someone was always sick.

Someone always needed, or occasionally did, a big piss.

Once on a terrible school trip to Morwellham Quay , some of the bigger boys put a dog sh!t into the rucksack of a boy called Paul. Somehow, despite wearing his own personal turd, just inches from his face, he didn’t notice the smell until he was back on the bus and rooting about for his sandwiches.

He found it, he froze momentarily, then he threw up on into and all over his bag and self – magnificently – like an involuntary piping hot PUBLIC GOBSTEW.

And got immediately bollocked by the teachers for causing a fuss.

QED: Someone was always sick.

But anyway, I digress…

The defining point of all school trips was, once you got past the piss, the vomit and the smell of bus, the fact that the last half an hour of every f*cking journey was always accompanied by the Godawful howling auditory apocalypse of repeated verses of one utterly stupid busw@nker of a song, or another.

And the driver was never a “jolly good fellow” – not in the slightest; he was a miserable old man with a biro and a box of Benson & Hedges in his top pocket and disturbing slip on shoes.

At least nowadays, the last half an hour of a school trip pans out much like the rest, with schoolkids reclining zombie-esque into their static-inducing seats, lost in a glassy eyed world of earphones, texting and Facebook.

Thank f*ck for iPods.