Okay, here’s me standing on Karthik’s shoulders.
He is talking about the (un?)grammatical excesses committed by one Mr. L, who asked us to “Look your own eye.” Let me put Karthik out of his misery(?) – what he actually said (or was trying to say) was “Look your own height,” which meant look straight ahead, not up or down 🙂
Of course, cutting one’s haircut is still a standing joke among old schoolmates.
“Take up front,” I think, was a warning Mr. L gave before whacking one on the backside with his cane. The reason for this, I now think, is not because of concern for the damage the cane might cause to the hands, but rather for the damage that might be caused to the cane if it came into contact with the bones of the wrist. A splintered cane meant it had to be replaced, and more importantly, no more caning that day. Of course, if you wore baggy trousers and bent backward as the blow (or “cut” as the teachers used to call it) was administered, you could take a great deal of the sting off it.
But then, Mr. L wasn’t the typical games master for you – he talked about the cricketing “ex-eye” (his version of the school eleven, written XI) and mistook Ooty for Coimbatore!