How To Be Something You’re Not In Cambridge

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Upgrade from Lout to Lord, or deteriorate from Duke to Devvo, with 10 top tips from The Tab's resident lads.

Cambridge is predominantly bourgeois. Faced with the burden of being decidedly middle class, and thoroughly boring, you are now at a cross-roads in your life where you have two choices: poshing it up, or roughing it down. For those 36% of freshers who thought they wouldn’t be posh enough for Cambridge, follow The Tab’s 5 easy steps to social improvement, and pretend you always felt as accustomed to discussing Kant over some Darjeeling in an oak-paneled set of rooms. Alternatively, dig out a little niche for yourself as the resident working class hero, replete with all the spite and insecurity that a state education instils in you about coming to Cambridge.



1. The clothing

The true aristocracy only shop at tailors. Jack Wills is to tailors what Greggs is to Patisserie Valerie. Scour Jermyn Street in London and take a trip to “Welsh and Schweffries” or “New and Blingwood”. Immediately purchase two pairs of brown suede loafers. Trash one pair, and name these your ‘lash boots’, which you will now happily vomit on regardless of their hundred pound price tag. Always wear beige chinos or cords (keep a ‘snazzy’ crimson pair in reserve). Jumpers must be cashmere, and carefully sewn-in name tapes are obligatory if you really want to maintain the air of boarding school bliss. A Barbour with spent shotgun cartridges and pheasant feathers in its pockets can be added. Purchase a gold signet ring. Guffaw.

2. The company

Only speak to people of higher social standing – they are particularly easy to spot, as they will be wearing pretty much the same outfit as you, flopping their hair around, toting a double-barrelled surname, and pouting at regular intervals. By no means associate with anyone of ethnic origin, unless they happen to be an exiled prince of a rebellious African state. Obviously leave your crass regional accent behind you.

3. The PSC (Public School Circuit)

All posh people know each other, hence the Pitt club exists. This is so they can get together and talk about buggery, bashing gypsies and generally have some bloody good larks. When two posh people meet they embark on the ‘name game’. Just keep spouting names of people who went to public school and pretend you ‘adore’ them. The more people you are mutually acquainted with, the better. Always keep a bottle of Moet in your fridge, get a table at Hidden Rooms and take up rugby at John’s.

Let Tatler guide thee on thy lofty quest…

4. The complete disrespect for other people’s property

Given that money is no object, a properly educated lad or lady will borrow their friend’s items without even thinking about asking. And then sew a name tape in it.

5. The icing on the patisserie:

Immediately change course to History of Art (because you want to work out just how much the family collection is worth) or Land Economy (need to know the basics to run the estate yah). And don’t forget GY ’08, mate.



1. The clothing

Trackie bottoms are de rigueur. But steer clear of stash, and ‘joggers’ from Jack Wills. Stick to the Lonsdale and you won’t go far wrong. If someone does make you take off the trackies, and you have to wear a suit for some up itself Cambridge event, accessorise appropriately so that you look like a footballer in court. Breeches, big pink tie, coupled with an air of guilty unease. Display insane levels of raw, seething hatred for anyone wearing chinos.

2. The company

Make sure you have at least one fight in Fresher’s week. Begin by shouting ‘cunt’ at someone as they walk past, and then go mental when they dare to look back. Spend the rest of the walk home berating whoever you’re with for not backing you up, and reiterate that back on the streets at home, the only way your crew survived was by sticking together. Make friends with any black people you meet; most people in Cambridge are a bit scared of them, guaranteeing you an instant rep.

3. The State School Circuit (SSC)

Talk about your ‘state school in South Manchester’ a lot, and go on about the nutters at your old school as if they were your best mates, even though you were probably inside working when they were sitting on top of the science block throwing tiles at the teacher’s car park. Constantly suggest going to Spoons, for breakfast, dinner and a night out. A can of lager is compulsory for social events; matriculation, formal hall, drinks with the master. STOP PLAYING RUGBY.

From now on, Devvo is your homeboy.

4. The complete disrespect for other people’s personal property

This stems not from a lack of respect, but out of proper working class anger. Even if the only job your dad has ever lost was his paper round, go on about it like it tore the family apart, and pushed you all into abject poverty.

5. The icing on the pasty:

Have a grossly overstated bike lock. A real fuck-off steel chain thing. It is a very subtle tool for making you seem more working class. The size of the lock equates to how valuable the bike is to you; so stick a massive lock on a ridiculously shit bike. In addition, appear to be able to handle the bike lock as a weapon, wrapping it menacingly around your fist.

  • Chrissy


  • I heart Jason

    How can I be more like Jason Derulo?

    • j-dog


      • ur a pleb

        whoever wrote this is a pleb.. 'scared of black people'?!? i'm scared of the asians

        • Jason Derulo

          Hi can I help? xx

          • Agnus

            I would like to think that indeed there is a third way – by way of example I would like to use myself: Angus. I efortlessly bridge the gap between lout and lord in my charity-shop brogues.

            By Angus.

      • ivan the actual cunt

        how can i be more like jase the fit barman?

        • Magdalene Angus

          Camel is the colour of this winter. All the fashion blogs are saying it. Chino's are therefore a must, not a status symbol.

          • Matt Damon

            so too, are bobble hats and some kind of retro jumper

  • nav dogs

    i am a big name!

    • Jason Derulo

      your nothing on me

  • Droggles

    These arbitrary divisions are only holding us back. 'Louts' and 'Lords' are united by the fact that they both have cold, dead, soulless eyes.

  • Reinvented

    Really great article.

  • rudiger

    I know it's meant to be a joke but I suspect you're still a twat.

    • Rudiger the Cunt

      Rudiger, I don't suspect. I know you're a twat.

  • Debastian Sunnett

    I don't need to read this article because I'm already a LAD.

  • The Earl of Bothwell

    I object to the comment regarding a change to the Land Economy Tripos.

  • Dom Macklin

    Whys there not a section on how to act like Chesney Hawkes?

  • clance-dog


    • schhhhhhwefffiiiing


      • Autoeroticist

        They start like that. Then I fuck loads of them.

  • Gaz the Barman

    If anyone really wants to know how to change from lout to lord, or indeed from charming to chav, this guy explains it best…

  • Tom


  • Joe

    I will give you a response.

    To begin with, I was a mature student for 7 years and I don’t personally think that council tax should be charged to students. That said, there are ways in which I think this article is highly misleading.

    It alleges that “…the local council voted in favour of making Bath students pay thousands of pounds in council tax…” This claim is utterly false. The final motion passed was to review whether landlords should pay business rates. See here:

    Although Councillor Player suggested looking at the possibility of students paying Council Tax, there was NO mention of “…thousands of pounds…”. Indeed, it could be conceived that a new council tax band might be legislated, involving students who rent a single room paying just a nominal fee in return for the services they receive such as refuse collection.

    There are streets in Councillor Player’s ward that are 80% occupied by students. The rest of the residents pay for the services that students receive. So the argument is that if you are in receipt of something, you should make a contribution toward it – even if that contribution is a small one. As I say, I am against such a move myself but there are some in the community who consider it fair.

    Councillor Player is not the ogre that your article depicts. For example, she has fought to try to stop landlords being granted licences if the accommodation they provide does not meet a certain standard. In other words, students have complained to her about terrible living conditions such as broken floorboards and damp, and she has tried to fight their cause.

  • Darling is a cunt

    Agreed that you're a cunt

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