A Short Guide to Writing Incident Reports – Mr Terry

I am afraid that in economics we tend to abuse the English language. For example, in economics, ‘normal’ means nothing to do with something that is ordinary, standard or expected but instead a good or service with a positive income elasticity of demand – where did that come from!
This is not helped by the fact that economics is a subject which is mainly grey in colour, by that I mean that nobody can agree what is right or wrong. Therefore, we economists like to make up for that by writing really complicated statements to explain really simple things in the hope that people will not question us about it.

Putting that together with the fact that at times I need to sit with boys while they explain their actions on the dreaded incident report form, I thought I would write you a few tips for when you next have to write an incident report. My little bit for literacy!!!

You have done something wrong, you are about to be caught and have done a runner:

Mr Dixon, I am sorry I ran but I did so because everyone else was absquatulating themselves from the situation as well. My neural receptors were uncontrollably stimulated and my brain actioned a reflex flight response.

You are banged to rights but you are trying to persuade Mr Dixon that there are other things that need to be considered:

Mr Dixon, I assure you that although my behaviour has been undesirable there are adscititious circumstances that need to be considered and that the accusations are a complex interplay of extrinsic motivators.

You know that someone has dobbed you in but want to indicate that you feel that the other person is saying a lot without making any sense whatsoever.

Mr Dixon I am afraid that I must say this is unjust, Miggins is a complete blatherskite and he is indulging in obscurantism!

You are in trouble but very much feel that a great deal of fuss and strife is being made over nothing:

Mr Dixon this is a case of unjust bobsy-die, certain unfairly prejudiced stakeholders are unduly inflating the magnitude of the circumstantial evidence based on asymmetrical information.

You are trying to persuade Mr Dixon that all this trouble has been blown way out of proportion:

Mr Dixon, I assure you that this is something born of nothing and this has been exaggerated to brobdingnagian proportions.

You have been accused of being rowdy in the corridors:

Mr Dixon, I apologise but I was only a small part of the callithumpian behaviour of others. I am in general of a reserved and taciturn nature and have been unduly coerced into actions of this repugnant nature.

You have done wrong but you want Mr Dixon to know that you were forced into that action because of the threatening behaviour of others:

I am sorry Mr Dixon but their behaviour was totally comminatory, they were being minacious towards me and they are superbious and vomitous.

An overzealous prefect has reported you to Mr Dixon in the DH at first mess because you are sitting around chatting and there is no room for anyone else to sit and eat:

Sorry Sir, I am very appreciative of the efforts of the catering staff, I just wanted to make sure that I degust, and it is was very difficult to tear myself away from the table as I was sitting with a number of deipnosophists, plus of course I am rather edacious.

You are trying to convince Mr Dixon that the other boy was lying:

Sir but surely you can tell he was lying, he was erubescent when he was speaking to you, it is clear that he was dissembling and portraying a masquerade.

You want to convince Mr Dixon to let you off lightly because it will lead to a happy ending and you have learnt your lesson:

Mr Dixon, I understand the unenviable nature of my actions, but leniency in these circumstances will I am sure lead to an eucatastrophe!

You have retaliated because another pupil has basically said that you are a completely worthless something something something:

Mr Dixon I am very sorry about my actions but Miggins is totally in the habit of floccinaucinihilipilification.

Mr Dixon has been hearing some nasty (but untrue) rumours about you from other students:

I am afraid Mr Dixon that those that have been spreading this around are gobemouche and what they say is fallacious.

You have been called into Mr Dixons office for unpleasant behaviour but you are looking for a way of saying that everyone else is doing it:

I am sorry sir, it isn’t just me my actions are mumpsimus it is a tradition, it isn’t my fault.

You have been caught on a device after lights out again:

I am very sorry sir but I am a netizen, I do try, but I am somewhat a screenager, it is not my fault.

You are trying to convince Mr Dixon that what others are saying about you is incorrect:

I am afraid Mr Dixon that the other’s assertions are a pantagruelian lie and in every way, and in every respect erroneous.

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