Wednesday 7 September 2005

no more pencils, no more books

Wow. There I was moaning that nothing much was going on, and suddenly you're all busy asking each other questions and generally getting better acquainted. It's like we're all first years in our first week at University and we've been shyly introducing ourselves to our room-mates and next-door neighbours. I reckon we've got to the stage where we are all kind of gathered together in the TV room and we're trying to break the ice.

It's quite sweet. I think some of you are even flirting.

I don't want to put a downer on things, but I think I can guarantee you that within 3 months:

--> you will be unable to stand the sight of the person you first made friends with

--> Someone will be foolishly trying to grow a moustache / goatee

--> There will have been a lot of drunken snogging

--> You still won't have cooked anything more ambitious than a baked potato

--> you will have an amazing capacity to drink watered down beer

Obviously, my role in all this is that of the dispassionate observer. It is, after all, the role I played when I actually was at University.

Best days of your life, apparently.

I graduated 10 years ago and I haven't ever had cause to look back at my time in University with any great fondness (and what fondness I have tends to fade every time they ring me up and ask me if I'd care to make a donation).

Of course I had some fun when I was there: I drank a lot, I went to Glastonbury for the first time, I messed around on the University Radio Station, I discovered email and the internet, I spent 4 months living and studying in Venice.... Yes, some good times. On the whole though, I would say that the time I spent at school has proven to have a much more lasting impact on my life. Many of the things that seemed to make University so exciting to others were not really a big deal to me. I had been at boarding school since the age of seven, and so living away from my parents was nothing new to me. For better and for worse, it was at school that most of my attitudes to life were shaped. University gave me some excellent intellectual training, but I'm not sure what else it taught me. Not much about life, anyway.

I think it speaks volumes that I am in touch with only one person I met at University, and I'm in daily contact with lots of the people I went to school with.

Still, you enjoy yourselves eh? Don't mind me.

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