I just got my hand slapped! Have any of you gotten a call like this?

Ireland
June 13, 2007 11:08am CST
The headmistress of my son's school just called concerning a t shirt he wore to school today. It isn't the first time he has worn it, but today 'Someone' complained. It's from the London Dungeon, and on further consideration I suppose it is in poor taste, although there are no graphics. It's a Jack the Ripper shirt, and on the back it say, "White Chapel Tour" with the dates of his various crimes. I always thought it was a bit of clever marketing by the London Dungeon. It looks like a T Shirt that you would buy for a band's tour, with places and dates. The headmistress said she hadn't even seen it as she was in meetings all day, but, "Someone had thought it might have listed...murders on the back." Well, fair enough, it does. For those of you who haven't been, the London Dungeon is a reenactment museum type place. They have parts about the Ripper, the Plague, and the Great Fire. You go there for a laugh and a scare and it is a hugely popular London tourist attraction. All that shirt signifies to me is a really fun trip we had together several years ago. So, I told her, "Yes, it is a souvenir from the London Dungeon and I'll tell him not to wear it to school anymore." The school has no dress code. She was embarassed and said, "It is just a matter of ignorance on someone's part." I would love to know who complained but there is no way to ask, of course. The funniest/worst, whichever way you want to look at it is that it is MY shirt, and he has sort of taken it over. Okay, I am off to bed to pull the covers over my head now!
13 people like this
16 responses
• United States
14 Jun 07
Well, i don't think that shirt is a big deal, myself. It is a sounvenire fo gosh sakes! Whoever complained is being overly sensitive and ridiculous. Don't let it get to you.
2 people like this
• Ireland
14 Jun 07
Thanks. I think it was just someone being nasty.
• Philippines
14 Jun 07
I think the best thing you can do is sit down, and secretely laugh at the person for being too petty. Don't lost sleep over it I'm sure that person have too much time in their hand with nothing to occupy it.
2 people like this
• Ireland
14 Jun 07
I would like to find out who it was. There is a contingent that complains about everything, but even this doesn't seem like their style.
• Canada
13 Jun 07
Seems to me that whoever complained went WAY overboard. If there's no dress code for school then it seems to me that School shouldn't really have complained. I guess they just had to be seen to do SOMETHING, but being politically correct over a shirt is kinda crazy.
• Ireland
14 Jun 07
The silly thing is, he has had that thing out of my drawer for a couple of years without incident. Now, there are only 3 more days of school and we get this call. As he poined, out, he isn't even going to have a chance to wear it again.
@KarenO52 (2950)
• United States
13 Jun 07
The shirt sounds pretty cool, and an interesting way to note an event in history, even if it was the reign of Jack the Ripper. There's always going to be some busy-body around to spoil the fun.
2 people like this
• Ireland
14 Jun 07
Thanks, that is kind of the way I looked at it, and I think the Head did, too. I wouldn't want her job.
@makingpots (11915)
• United States
13 Jun 07
Could have been much worse. You live an learn. Lol
2 people like this
• Ireland
14 Jun 07
I am glad I started this discussion, we have gotten a real kick out of the answers and I'm glad to see the majority of people didn't assume he is a serial killer in training!
• United States
13 Jun 07
I kind of understand the headmistresses point of view but give me a break, if anyone knows what the London Dungeon is then they should not be offended. You never know what is going to offend somepeople. I guess your son will have to wear a plain white teeshirt to school from now on and when he spills on it someone will be offened because it will look like a "wet teeshit contest" LOL
• Ireland
14 Jun 07
Holy cow, that is too funny! I agree, somebody is going to be upset unless it is plain white.
@patgalca (18135)
• Orangeville, Ontario
13 Jun 07
One of my daughters told me a kid was sent home from wearing a t-shirt from a restaurant called Jack Astor's. I knew the name of the restaurant was not the best, and some of their radio commercials are a little out there, but that t-shirt seemed harmless. When I was in grade school, oh so many years ago, one of the boys was sent home for wearing a t-shirt that read "F C K The only thing missing is U". It was a Catholic school and our teacher was a religious Brother. A few weeks ago one of my daughter's classmates was sent home for wearing a spaghetti strap shirt. The girls are not to bear their shoulders or mid-drifts in our school and I applaud that.
1 person likes this
• Ireland
13 Jun 07
It is really strange what is acceptale some places, but not at others, and it is even harder to know when there is nothing written down about any sort of dress code. Yesterday there were two girls that came in in matching playboy bunny track suits complete with bunny ears, kid you not. If I got a call over a souvenir from a popular tourist attraction suitable for at least as low as 5 year olds, I wonder if their parents were called? Anyhoo, I am washing the shirt and plan on wearing it myself every day when I pick him up from school between now and when we go on holiday. Maybe by expressions I will be able to figure out who it was. I will refrain from borrowing the bunny ears from the girls, though.
@Modestah (11179)
• United States
15 Jun 07
no, can't say as I have ever received such a call. my eldest went to parochial kindergarten and then was home educated until this last year when he went to a private school. so it was uniforms when away and "whatever" when at home, but his principal had already pre-approved his wardrobe when she purchased it. :) I would agree that the shirt is a bit in poor taste for a public school. Of course, the school has no dress code, then it is a bit hypocrite of them to enforce one. Perhaps the school should enforce a code of no writing on shirts worn to school. then there will be no hurt feelings or offenses taken and given - by way of political statements or political correctness.
1 person likes this
@Modestah (11179)
• United States
16 Jun 07
very valid points you make, woodpigeon, to which I am inclined to agree.
1 person likes this
• Ireland
16 Jun 07
Hey Modestah, I don't mean to be nasty if I came off that way. The episdoe has upset him and he feels picked upon at this point, so I guess it is Mama Pigeon annoyed for her fledgling. The policy is flimsy and vague at best, and it was an offense that hadn't been an offense before, so it got my back up. I by no means meant to take it out on you. Ironically, we don't live near London but I have a suspicion if we did, the school's upper classmen may have visited. They have been to Dublinia, which shows the Plague and its victims with life sized statues, they sing in Christchurch which is full of tombs and even has things like mummified cats in display cases, they've been on the Viking Splash where the guides dress as marauding Vikings and encourage them to scream about pillage and rape at passerbyes as they drive through he city...it's a matter of context, I suppose ;-)
• Ireland
15 Jun 07
I don't think they will bother with a code under this headmistress, especially trying to enforce one that requires no emblems or writing. I could complain about the jocks in the Addidas shirts or the bunnies in their ears, or the little girls with things like 'Juicy' written across the seat of their pants. The headmistress would be driven insane with all of the violations and complaining and notes and I don't blame her. I don't even care about taste at this point. He whas worn the shirt for two years to the school. It's my shirt, from a place that provides school tours, and if there was problem it could have been mentioned the first oe second or 20th time he wore it if it is so offensive. There is no dress code and it'd be nice if the head stood up for herself and the choice she has made not to have one.
@whyaskq (7523)
• Singapore
15 Jun 07
Perhaps the particular student who complained is frightened or have some unpleasant experience? I personally do not like like it for it signifies something negative. No, I am not the one who complained. lol. If I remember that is the same place, I think I have been to the London Dungeon. My friends and I went there out of curiosity. However, I do not like it the minute I walked in. My friends wanted to have a round, I just have to follow along. I certainly do not want any momentos from there.
1 person likes this
• Ireland
15 Jun 07
It wasn't a student who raised the issue, the kids thought it was a band. In fact, some of them even thought they had heard of it. Although the shirt aknowledges a negative series of events, it wasn't overt. I'd like the girls to quit dressing like playboy bunnies, but I'm not going to complain. To each our own. Maybe whoever complained was someone who went to the Dungeon and didn't want to be reminded of the scary experience of plagues and fires and rats. I know when that one ran across my foot I screamed louder than my mom, who had taken me along for her 65th birthday.
@Modestah (11179)
• United States
15 Jun 07
you kind of touched on why I would consider it inappropriate to wear to school. Not actually knowing the place or the shirt - my knee jerk reaction when hearing the story is that the shirt makes light of a serious situation. kind of flippantly.
1 person likes this
• Ireland
15 Jun 07
You are correct that it makes light of the murders committed by he Ripper. The London Dungeon is not for everyone. Neither are the other branches of it, or the Edinburgh Ghost Tours or any of the rest. I love history, even the negative events, and am interested in all of them. If the school ever decides to study the history of these events, or take a tour there, I am syre they will not be allowed to purchase shirts.
@mummymo (23706)
13 Jun 07
Oh dear , my dear friend, have you been naughty and called to the headmistress's office? Lucky they no longer have the cane! lol It is not as if the t-shirt had any grisly pictures or descriptions - it might even have came in handy if they were studying history! Our schools have uniform policies - saves a lot of hassle! My boss brought Niall a t-shirt back from holiday that had a picture of Calvin (of Calvin and Hobbes) and reads " every day I am forced to add another name to the list of people who piss me off" His daughter thought I would go mad, but i thought it was really funny and it is his favourite t-shirt! Mind you I am probably uptight as I wouldn't let him wear it to school! lol xxx
1 person likes this
@mummymo (23706)
13 Jun 07
Do you think she will send you home a punishment exercise or drag you into school for detention? lol xxx
1 person likes this
• Ireland
13 Jun 07
I think she was so embarassed she will pay the dry cleaning bill!
@whywiki (6066)
• Canada
13 Jun 07
Political correctness run amok. I think the school and whoever complained went a bit overboard, it isn't like he was the one who committed the murders. I try to be as unpolitically correct as I can be in life because it all annoys me so.
• Ireland
13 Jun 07
Thanks, whywiki. I half think, because I tend to do as I like in terms of how I dress, somebody took that out on my son. The more I think about it the more annoyed I get!
1 person likes this
@wachit14 (3595)
• United States
13 Jun 07
I suppose given all the anxiety over violence in schools, someone thought that the shirt which may have been portraying murderers should be brought to the attention of the head mistress. I'm not so sure thought that she needed to call you about it though. If she knows your son and there's no dress code, then why take it further than that? Perhaps she just wanted to cover herself and make the phone call. Either way I wouldn't worry about it.
• Ireland
13 Jun 07
I think that is why she called, because she was put under pressure by someone. She has been put in this position before, and I think it is the way to make her job easier. I don't envy her because she just wants things to go smoothly and I think sometimes she gets it from all sides. She does indeed know my son and me and that there is no dress code. Thanks to this discussion I think I have narrowed down the one or two people who would have had the ability to put enough pressure on her to make the call.
14 Jun 07
It wasn't your son's fault anyway if the school has no rule about what to wear I imagine our children can wear everything. My child is too little to go to school so till now I 've not gott a call like this
1 person likes this
• Ireland
14 Jun 07
I think it is even sillier because the London Dungeon offers school tours!
@castleghost (1304)
• United States
13 Jun 07
I would love to have a t-shirt like that. I guess I am foolish because I just don't see anything wrong with that t-shirt. All it is doing is stating historical facts. No, we haven't been taken to task by the school about the childrens clothing. My fiancee keeps a close eye one what the children wear and follows their guidelines. Like you if this were to happen to me I would like to know who complained about the t-shirt as well.
2 people like this
• Ireland
13 Jun 07
You might want to check out the link to the Dungeon itself. http://www.thedungeons.com/en/london-dungeon/dungeon-guide/jack-the-ripper.html There are a number of them and they are very well done. It is a cool shirt. They don't have any specific guidelines, so it is totally subjective. I could complain about the Playboy Bunny gear, but I am more of a mind to let people do their own thing if they aren't hurting anyone.
1 person likes this
• United States
16 Jun 07
We just got a letter from our homeowners association about an unregistered car parked in front of our house. My daughter was given a Suburban that is large enough to hold all the grandkids (so we don't have to take two vehicle everywhere.) It has a temporary 30 day registration on it. I suspected the neighbors filed the complaint because they always parked in front of my house until we started using the spot. And sure enough, as soon as we moved our car, they started parking their cars there.
1 person likes this
@bowtieguy (5915)
• United States
3 Jul 07
My boys wear a unifor to school, so i don't think I would ever have to worry about this happing to me. I have always instilled the importance of proper dress in my boyus and i know they will always make the right decision when it comes to matters of style.