Sunday night – the end of Freshers’ week. I’ve survived!
Friday was the Freshers’ Ball, the culmination, or so I thought. of a week packed with activities for the arriving first years. The Welcome Guide Events 2016 is a THIRTY SIX page booklet to all that was ‘on’. And it wasn’t all just drinking and debauchery at the Union. There were Quiz Nights, Film Nights, trips to Alton Towers (possibly not the best attended event given the £5 million fine for the Smiler crash dished out this week) and IKEA (honest!), coffee mornings and Keele chapel events
Nevertheless it was the Freshers’ Ball that dominated the weekend. I was invited to a birthday ‘party’ by one of the football club to start the evening. This is known here as ‘pre-drinks’, at other places as ‘pre-lashing’ or ‘pre-loading’. I had a good inkling of what it was all about as on Wednesday, before another Union event, I’d been invited to a football club ‘social’. This took place in Lindsey T block and consisted of about 20 players sitting in a circle playing drinking games and getting hammered. This is evidently what happens nowadays – students (all young people?) only really drink to get drunk and the best way to do that is to start off with a couple of hours of drinking at ‘home’
The party was in Horwood L block and about 40 students milled around on stairs, corridors and kitchens ‘getting it down’. In the interests of research (!) I had a couple of beers and then, at around 10, headed down to the Union. I’ve become something of a ‘celebrity’ already (or is that ‘curiosity’ – ed?) and was on the guest list so got in free instead of having to fork out £20. I have to report that I had a good time. I talked to a lot of students about everything and nothing. I’m glad to say that Keele students are as friendly and approachable as I hope they were back in the seventies. I even went to see the headline act, Professor Green, for about 30 seconds
On Saturday I went to see Burton beat Cardiff with the family, but got back in time for the Headphone Disco. To quote the aforementioned booklet,: “head down to this surreal event which involves arming clubbers with their own two-channel wireless headphones, switching off the sound system and and having two DJs spin two completely different sets side by side. Join Keele SU in this immense and unique silent party sensation and embrace one of the most talked about and freshest of dance party experiences”
Let me tell you – silent it was not! But it was fun and something that would have gone down a storm in the seventies. Imagine half the students belting out ‘Wide Eyed and Legless’ and the other half ‘Maggie May’ and you’ll get the idea
Quiet day today with cricket nets followed by several hours in the library. First classes tomorrow. Wish me luck!