‘Why does everyone hate me?’ A John’s fresher speaks out

You hate SAM WATTS. And he wants to know why

johns Sam Watts

As a John’s fresher, the first thing I learnt wasn’t how to get to Sidgwick, or where to find my DoS, but that I should expect widespread animosity when venturing out into Cambridge.

This struck me as rather unfair as I tried my hardest not to piss anyone off in my first five hours at university.

But, try as  I might, I did encounter some less than amicable students during my first expedition to Cindies.

From reading The Tab, in the long lonely weeks after my friends had gone to their much more exciting freshers, I had gathered that John’s had a bit of a reputation for being the dicks of Cambridge.

I didn’t realise how popular this view would be, or how unfair it is.

Prince William, there is more to Cambridge than Johns

Just your average Johnian taking a stroll…

Granted, I did hear a fresher lamenting ‘Daddy’s’ threats of selling her fourth pony; there was the guy who queued up at HSBC for half an hour to take out £20, because he didn’t know how to use a cash point; and there is the constant presence of the huge hulking herculean figures of the John’s rugby team.

But these are just a handful of people in a college of almost 570 undergrads.

From talking to people at other colleges there seem to be two main sources of antipathy: money and sports.

I don’t really understand how Trinity manages to stay under the radar of this abuse given it actually is the wealthiest college in Cambridge.

One could suggest that perhaps they spend so much time studying in college that they haven’t, as of yet, found time to piss off any colleges.

Others say that the difference is John’s dominance on the playing field.

But it seems even stranger to label an entire college nobs, just because it contains 15 men who are very good at getting a ball to one end of a pitch in 80 minutes of intense, sweaty, homoerotic sport.


Who even are they?

So this leads me to one conclusion; like all communities Cambridge needs a scapegoat.

Frustrated students need to vent in a way that getting drunk and listening to the Lion King in a sticky club won’t cover, and John’s fills that function.

And it serves this roles silently, stoically, proudly.

Because it’s the hero Cambridge deserves, but not the one it needs right now. So we’ll hunt him. Because it can take it. Because it’s not our hero. It’s a silent guardian, a watchful protector. A dark knight.

So the next time you’d rather be at Oxford, think about what you’re really saying…