CONFESSION time and it’s very embarrassing. Yes, I’ve been watching Love Island.

I don’t know how it got a grip of me, but alcoholics and drug addicts probably say the same. One minute I was vowing I’d never watch “that garbage”, and the next I was checking the TV listings to see what time it was on.

In my defence, I was at a loose end after the World Cup. Suddenly, there was a vacuum in my life. My wife and youngest son were always hogging the TV in the lounge and I started feeling lonely watching the telly on my own in the kitchen.

I got sucked in and, before I knew what was happening, I’m ashamed to say I began talking about Dani and Jack, Megan and Wes, Josh and Kaz, and the other islanders like I knew them intimately.

For those who may not understand what I’m on about, I should explain that Love Island is a reality TV show in which young single people are brought to a villa on Majorca in search of romance.

From what I can gather, it appears to be compulsory for the girls to wear bikinis made from dental floss. It can’t be comfortable living with a constant “wedgie” but they honestly don’t seem to mind.

The islanders also speak a different language, so I have to keep asking my son to translate. For example, the word “grafting” is in common usage. Apparently, it now means “striving to attract a member of the opposite sex”.

“What word did you use in your day?” asked my son.

“Courting,” I explained. “Or wooing – but I’ve been grafting ever since.”

Bear in mind that this is a boy who had the audacity to describe Laura as “way too old” to be on Love Island. She’s 28!

Anyway, other new terms I’ve learned include the following: “Pied” (being dumped by someone); “Melt” (idiot); “Peng sort” (handsome chap); “Mugged off” (deceived); “Salty” (being unfriendly); and “Bantz” (fun or banter).

They’ve all been on “amazing journeys” and I think it must be a rule for the words “literally” and “like” to be used in every sentence. For example: “I’m literally going to explode into a million tiny pieces if I get pied again, like.”

“PDA” was another new one on me. After a discussion about Brexit, in which Hayley asked if it would mean cutting down trees and make it harder to go on holidays to “Spain and stuff”, I guessed it was an acronym for “Politically Deficient, Apparently”. When the islanders were asked where Vienna was, and accepted someone’s declaration that it’s “in Italy innit?”, I decided it must be “Particularly Daft Answer”.

However, thanks to my son, I can now confirm that PDA means “Public Display of Affection”.

What a melt I am, not knowing that. Anyway, it’s been an amazing journey, a welcome bit of bantz after the World Cup, and I’m literally going to be at a loose end until the next series, like.


DEREK Grocott, who taught at Norton Comprehensive School, near Stockton, was marking a geography paper at home and began to chuckle when he got to a passage about mountain ranges.

A boy had written the immortal line: “The Penis is the backbone of England.”

MEANWHILE, a little girl at George Dent Nursery School in Darlington, was asked if she’d like some rice pudding for dessert.

“No,” she replied.

“No what?” asked the teacher, hoping for better manners.

“No fear,” came the reply.