Which manhole cover is your college?
Week 7 and we’re scraping the bottom of the scrapings from the bottom of the barrel of scrapings
A hush falls over the Tab boardroom.
The last minions scuttle to their black leather seats. At the head of the long, dark mahogany table, a figure wreathed in shadow clears their throat.
“One Features article a day. That’s all I ask. And yet you fail to deliver.”
“But your Highness –”
“Don’t even think about giving me excuses!” The voice of authority from the head of the table booms around the lair’s candlelit dimness. “Give me results!” Silence. “What? You mean to say you’re out of ideas?”
“Well, you see… yes…” the underling squeaks pathetically. “We’ve done all we can: ‘how bored are you right now?’, a piece about the Cambridge river patrol, and multiple samey articles about procrastination! Oh woe is me :(” Their sobs reverberate, gradually fading into silence once more.
The leader ponders for a while. “What about another college article? People love those! You know, like ‘which debilitating tropical illness is your college?’ or ‘which type of semi-synthetic organic polymer is your college?’ where you recycle those same unfunny college stereotypes over and over. Ha! Cracks me up every time. What do you think?” The mood in the cave seems to tangibly lift. Someone pre-emptively pops a champagne bottle.
“Your Highness, you’ve done it again! That’s an astonishingly original and creative idea! I’ll get our most mediocre Features writer to work on that right now!” Claps and cheers ring out around the swamp, and tears of joy flow freely.
“High five, team! We can stave off irrelevant redundancy for another day! Huzzah!”
Homerton/Corpus/Hughes Hall/etc – a manhole cover
I’m afraid that your colleges simply don’t have any established stereotypes. I’m genuinely really sorry about this and I wish I was creative and witty enough to invent some stereotypes, but unfortunately I write for The Tab. Instead of being upset that you’re viewing yet another colleges article where your hoods don’t make the cut, try to treat this as a positive: at least your colleges are a blank slate, baby, where you can write your name (and invent some clichés along the way). Opportunity knocks.
Pembroke – a man don’t care ‘bout all that cover
How could a man with a uni degree be bussing up mic? Pembroke is, of course, the best college. This is because I go there. On the outside, it looks a bit like a fortress – the only chink in the defence is the gate on Trumpington Street, but this is a weakness I failed to find on the open day so I never actually visited. On the inside, though, I’m told you’ll find a whirring beehive of industrious academic activity, as shown by high Tompkins Table performance. I’ve never actually located said beehive, but this may be because I’m still searching for the entrance. Nonetheless, Pembroke don’t care ‘bout all that outside world – it just gets quietly on achieving its Grade As and metaphorically spitting steel beam meltingly hot fire Grime tracks.
Fitzwilliam – a dankhole cover
Whilst doing my extensive 34 hours of research for this piece, I read another colleges article that suggests that all anyone at Fitz does is stare mournfully at your awful architecture and get stoned. I’ve never been to Fitz, but I imagine it as a kind of perpetually rainy evil citadel constructed entirely out of crude iron, wavey garms, mud, and printouts of winter pool notification emails from city colleges, all welded together in some kind of shambolic Frankenstein’s monster of a college. The very building itself screams ‘just treat me like King’s! I can do architecture! I’m part of the university too, you guys! Guys?’
Jesus – a manGOALLLLL cover
The Cambridge University Sports Camp – or Jesus College, as it’s come to be colloquially known – takes gifted youngsters and pretends to give them degrees whilst actually just charging them £9000 a year (plus maintenance) to frolic in nice fields all day, have barbecues (their college crest bears striking resemblance to a certain Peri-Peri chicken eatery’s logo- I’m not saying it’s plagiarism, but Jesus plagiarised Nando’s), and row. Essentially, Jesus students are victims of the university’s largest organised fraud scheme. At least they’re having a nice time.
King’s – a seize the means of production of manhole covers manhole cover
If you believe the stereotype (which, naturally, we all do), King’s students march non-stop around Red Square Front Court chanting the Soviet national anthem, worshipping effigies of Corbyn, and blissfully ignoring the staggeringly opulent temple of Capitalism in which they live. I can say what I want about King’s because this is The Tab and the only newspaper they get behind the Iron Curtain King’s Gatehouse is Pravda, but if you are at King’s and these misleading generalisations upset you, then I advise you to suck it up harder than you sucked up the shock and shame of being annihilated yet again by the nasty Tories in last year’s election.
Peterhouse – a ye olde manholee covere
Harkinge backe to dayes gone by whene manholes weren’t invented and moste wordes included the lettere ‘e’ at the ende, Peterhousee is an olde college. Rumoure has it that Chaucere stille liveth there. Hee cannot cometh oute of hidinge, fore he has a fucking massive librarye finee from 1357e and attemptinge to payeth it would causeth the globale banking systeme to collapsee for lacke of fundes.
Trinity – a #bankroll cover
Trinity has both dolla bills and academic success. It is the manhole cover that we all aspire to be when we grow up. On the other hand it’s also much like the Godfather, in that I’m told it has some dubious investments in some dubious places, and whenever a lesser college has a problem, Trinity is the one who can sort it out.
Trinity Hall – a manhole cover
This can be summed up by typing ‘Trin’ on Google and it expectantly autofills ‘Trinity’, only to emit a metaphorical sigh of disappointment as you – somewhat regretfully – finish ‘Trinity Hall’. It tries hard but lacks the sheen of its namesake and will sadly be forever confined to the rank of mere manhole cover. Don’t lose sleep over it, Tit Hallers.
Queens’ – a fishbowl cover
I’m sure you’ve all noticed the plight that Queens’ College is in. Over millennia, the tumultuous tempests and enormous storm surges of the Cam have relentlessly pounded the brave banks shoring up Queens’ and now the college is slowly becoming Atlantis. Some of those with basement rooms have already evolved to develop gills and webbed feet. It’s only a matter of time before it gets full-on Godzilla and the freshers mutate into massive submarine dinosaurs that go on a destructive rampage around the metropolis of Cambridge. Stay tuned for Tab live-blogging.
Girton – a… hang on, I can’t actually see… nah, it’s too far away
In the most timelessly HILARIOUS stereotype of them all, Girton is a LONG WAY AWAY. Not sure if you’re aware of this, readers, but GIRTON IS A LONG WAY FROM TOWN. HAHA. They pointed SETI at Girton and it couldn’t detect anything (is that because it’s too far away or is that because there’s no intelligence at Girton??? LOL SO FUNNY RIGHT GUYS). You have to, like, ah fuck there’s a joke here somewhere, go on, like, er, a 15 minute bike ride to get there.
Shit. I ballsed that one up.