The crushing of childhood dreams

Gareth and I were talking about formative experiences the other day and he told me about the moment he feels is responsible for his, “constant feeling of being slightly disappointed by life” ๐Ÿ˜‰

He was about twelve years old, at a Boys Brigade camp on the west coast. One day the lads had to sign up for an activity. The sign up sheets offered a choice of Fishing, Swimming or Visit To BMX Factory.

Visit To BMX Factory! Hell yeah! Gareth and his bike-obsessed pals signed up in a flash.

Imagine their heartbreak when they arrived at the BMX Factory only to discover there had been a terrible misunderstanding caused by messy handwriting on the sign-up sheet. BMX Factory was actually BMK Factory… makers of quality carpets.

“It was a tragedy of the pre-word processing days,” said Gareth, a trace of anguish still in his voice almost thirty years later. “If Microsoft Word had been invented back then it would never have happened.”

Not manufactured in Scotland
Not manufactured in Scotland


About Shauna Reid

Ahoy there! Iโ€™m Shauna, an author, copywriter and content mentor. I love telling stories about life and helping others to tell theirs.

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22 thoughts on “The crushing of childhood dreams

  1. This seems to be the inverse of an experience my older brother had. When he was a kid he asked Mom for money to buy a raffle ticket because he wanted to win a cool, yellow bike in the school raffle. She gave him the money, prepared herself to comfort him when he didn’t win, and the next day he brought home a new bike! Childhood dreams come true…in AMERICA! ๐Ÿ™‚

  2. My husband and I believe this was a ploy arranged by someone that wanted to keep their job promoting the carpet factory….I mean seriously? Fishing and Swimming and…..Carpets??? Yep it was rigged and messily written on purpose!

  3. I’m fairly uncomfortable with you making me want to go back in time and hug your husband as a child (says the Kirkcaldian who went to the Lino factory A LOT on Brownie trips… I feel the pain!)

  4. Poor wee boy but great story now. Wonder whether the Boys Brigade leader was getting it on with the secretary. My childhood visit to a local carpet factory (-my friend’s father’s) entailed sliding down chutes quite fun but definitely not BMXs.

  5. He had a choice! Oh lucky boy! We only ever got to visit the neighbouring dairy farm on my school camps – and only because it was the home of one of my classmates ๐Ÿ™‚

    Hmmm perhaps that is why I have difficult making decisions ๐Ÿ™‚

  6. I read this while having a sneaky skive at my desk but ended up guffawing with laughter into my keyboard. Stealth is definitely not my middle name.

  7. The Boys Brigade must have a underlying agenda to encourage the aspirations of not so bright, hard working lads. Not going on to Uni, you could have a bright career in… dum, dum, dum, CARPET MAKING!

  8. Carpets! What cruelty!

    When I was in primary school, it was announced one day that the class was going on a trip to the Flying Circus. In my mind, this circus was perched at the top of a very long pole, miles and miles in the sky, and that’s why they called it the Flying Circus.

    Imagine my disappoint when we arrived at an entirely earthbound location, called the Shrine Circus.

  9. I was about three when my parents took me (and probably my brothers) to some place or other, maybe a petting zoo, that offered a donkey ride. It is one of my earliest memories.

    Years later I asked my parents about it. They said, “Oh yes, you rode the donkey but you cried the whole time.”

    They didn’t know I was crying from annoyance because I had been looking forward to a REAL donkey ride, perhaps trotting or galloping – not being led slowly around a fenced-in ring by the donkey’s handler. (How did I even know about donkey rides, or any kind of saddle-animal rides? We lived in the city and I’d never been up close to a donkey or horse before.)

    I completely understand now why this would not have been possible, but I still remember how disappointed I was.

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