Saturday, November 04, 2006

Ah, Those Witty, Witty Cambridge People II

Outside a Cambridge student hall of residence:
Abandon Hope All Ye Who Enter Here

With all the seriousness I've seen in the medical blogosphere recently, I sometimes forget I'm just a puny medical student, and that saving the world is not my responsibility yet. Thank goodness this week has never been short of reminders of life's silly side. Leafing through the local newspaper, Varsity, I am confronted by headlines like Cambridge Meat Cleaver Attack, Noisy Brothel Neighbours: Resident disturbed by prostitutes whipping customers, and Caius Superhall Carnage: Vomit and excrement on toilet floor.

Who said university was boring?

And so it is that on Halloween night, I am walking down the road to college when out of the Great Gate appear a couple of vampires. Yes, vampires, complete with pasty faces, fangs, and blood dribbling down their lips. The whole kaboodle. I blink, but they walk past me rather hurriedly, one even managing a "you alright mate?" and I think, what friendly vampires.

Then the Gate bursts open and the Head Porter runs into me at full tilt.

"Geddoutatheway!" he yells, nearly amputating my head with his huge porter-issue boots (I swear the Army supplies them) whilst behind me the two vampires take off into the night. Rambo runs screaming after them. It is only later, from Varsity, that I learn a fresher was assaulted that night after a Halloween bop. A group of boys had picked on a fresher using some wildly imaginative tactics demonstrating the superior intellect that got them into Cambridge:
A member of the group attempted to run into the fresher, failed, and instead ended up in a hedge. The assailant has also been sent to the Dean after "urinating on a table and then on a kissing couple" at the same bop.
Such genius! Such tactical brilliance! No wonder Cambridge is again top of the league tables this year.

As I was walking down King's Parade the other day, smack dab in front of King's College Chapel, I looked down at the tiles on the street and saw this:

High Maintenance Life
Legend has it that long ago, in the early days of the University, the first ever Provost of King's College, Lord Duke Baron Earl Master Provost Professor Emeritus Dr B. Wigg looked over the lands at Oxford, and saw that their students were outperforming his. So he made the decision to pressure his students harder than ever, and introduced personal tutors, just like in Oxford. Only this time, in an effort to show the other place his obvious superiority, he equipped his tutors with motivational tools (read: whips), and gave them the more ominous title of 'supervisor'.

The first Cambridge supervisor

And this is why Oxford has 'tutors' whilst Cambridge has 'supervisors'.

But the kindly Dean of King's College Chapel at the time, the Rev Dr S.A. Maritan, took pity on the students' plight, and decided to create a warning to all future students and applicants of the life they would face here. And thus one night, when the Provost was snoring in his coffin in the Crypt and his supervisors were hanging upside-down in their belfries, the good Dean stole out and laid this tile in front of his chapel, so that it may serve to warn generations to come.

Sadly, the Dean didn't anticipate that the students of the future would be complete masochists, and that his tile would conveniently be left out of the University prospectus. Thus his thoughtful message, sadly, has been relegated to the status of local curiosity. It might have helped the poor student who scrawled this right outside the Department of Pharmacology:

HELP(Before you even begin to ask, no, it wasn't me.)

I'm off to Nottingham tomorrow for the Nottingham Games, and as such this week's Cambridge Round-up will be slightly delayed. But it'll be worth waiting's been a VERY eventful week filled with asses, fireworks, more protests, and more supervisors worth slamming your head repeatedly on your desk for. Stay tuned!


Bal said...

You Cambridge people are all nutcases! ALL OF YOU! And poor Quark didn't deserve that photoshop treatment. Or is that some random Ferenghi? I can never tell...

Dan said...

angry medic is just being a drama king... cambridge is actually quite fun.. yes. waking up at 4 am at some mornings and sleeping at 4 am at some other mornings to finish up my report on the feasibility of a reactor is really fun!

Kungfukitten said...

One of my strangest memories of college life was walking to a party on campus and having two guys race by on bicycles completely naked except for condoms. They were trying to make some sort of political statement, but we were much more impressed with the mechanics of riding a bike and keeping the condoms on.

ash said...

S.A. Maritan? sounds like a fake story to me...

The Angry Medic said...

Bal: nope, some random Ferengi. and I didn't do it!

Dan: SEE?!

KungfuKitten: ...that is an impressive feat indeed. we had one old dude cycling past on King's Parade in the nude too. I wish I could say he was making a heartfelt political statement, but I think he was just plain nuts.

Ash: uhm, really? can't think why you'd think that. completely true, I assure you.

random lawyer whom I'm sure is reading my reply to Ash: see disclaimer.

duchesssof said...

I admit it...I was the American who painted the word HELP on your building. I flew over there, did that, then flew back. I had to buy window cleaner and paint thinner there at Cambridge since the aiport peeps took my liquids! Those bastards!

Spirit of 1976 said...

A member of the group attempted to run into the fresher, failed, and instead ended up in a hedge. The assailant has also been sent to the Dean after "urinating on a table and then on a kissing couple" at the same bop.


They refer to their parties as a BOP???

The Angry Medic said...

DuchesssOf: it was YOU? I'm NOT the only student who crawls out of pharmacology dazed and confused?

Spirit of 1976: I'm afraid so. Just like there is no coming DOWN to Cambridge, only coming UP, no matter where you live, and tutors are called 'supervisors', and quads 'courts', and tea parties 'squashes'...