College Life Complications

Got a problem? Shearme has your answer.

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College life is back in full swing, and some of us have remembered the small things that annoy us here which were forgotten over the Mich Vac. Here’s how to deal with them.

Many of you have been mulling over your problems, and sent them in for some advice that your DOS or Senior Tutor wouldn’t dare (probably for good reason) give you. You can join in on the fun by emailing your problems to [email protected]

Dear Agony Aunt Shearme,
I’ve come back up and I’m in my second year now so I kind of am trying the whole cooking for yourself thing. It’s not too unpopular with the ladies either.

My only problem is that I forgot my gyp doesn’t have an aga?! It doesn’t feel very homely without it, and I’m not sure I can do with some boiled water, and a heat as my college has only given us a kettle, and the microwave. What can I even cook?
Yours,        Creature Comforts-Craver

Dear Mx Comforts-Craver,
It’s understandable to miss the comforts of your parent’s house. Unfortunately, even if you’re at John’s, daddy saying he’ll pay for it probably won’t get things changed so you’re going to have to learn how to make do without an Aga. Life must be tough for you.

Vis-a-vis cooking in poorly-furnished student accommodation, the most important resource you have is creativity. A carefully balanced iron can serve as a make-shift hob. A kettle is like a pot and a stove all-in-one – poached eggs anyone?

Obviously, don’t actually do any of the above unless you fancy cleaning up or paying a college fine. I personally don’t understand why anyone wouldn’t eat in hall. Waking up knowing that there is bacon waiting in the servery always starts my day positively. In terms of cooking in order to be popular with the ladies, the only advice I could give would be to stop cooking and eat out instead.

Will this S-Aga ever end?

Dear Agony Aunt Shearme,
My college wife has become way too clingy! We were married quite early on in Michaelmas and I have grown increasingly tired of my choice. At first it was good fun, yet, now it is getting WAY too intense to the point where I think she thinks we are actually married.

I want to remain good friends but need a bit of space to breathe (loveless malaise is for the middle-ages not the young). What should I do?
Yours,    Desperate Spouse

Dear Mx Spouse,
College marriages can be hard. They share a lot of similarities with real marriages. You do it because everyone else does, thinking it will last forever but end up growing apart and “hanging out” with “new friends” more often.

Unfortunately, college marriages must also be ended like real marriages. You’ve essentially got three options: Shag, Unmarry, Kill.
The Shag: You can either proposition her for a booty-call, with the intention of scaring her off, or sleep with one of her close friends. Beware, this can backfire if she accepts your offer.
The Unmarry: You might have to outright say it to her face that you need to go your separate ways. As this is (probably) her first divorce, you can use all of the cliche phrases in the book: “We were too young when we met”, “you’re not the fresher I married”, and “I only married you for your May Ball ticket” are all good. Make sure you have another partner lined up though or you’ll have to choose whether to marry a mathmo, or become Cambridge’s Miss Havisham.
The Kill: You’ll need to get creative with this one to not get caught. Perhaps arrange for a rowing outing to end disastrously, or take them into the Townie part of town wearing college stash. Alternatively, the less-harming version is to send in incriminating evidence of rule-breaking to your Dean and have them sent down.

Don’t have Great Expectations of finding a New ton of eligible college wives.

Dear Agony Aunt Shearme,
I ended up sleeping with a Girton rower halfway through last term. What was meant to just be a one-night stand has now become somewhat of a more frequent thing. 

It seems I really know how to pick them as he now keeps staying over for about 4 nights of the week because he has rowing in the morning and doesn’t want to trek from Girton. He started just bringing his lecture notes for the next day and expecting to stay over. The worst bit is he gets up at some stupid time in the morning and is so noisy about it.

My problem is that the sex is really good – is it worth it though? Or how can I get him to give me more personal space?
Yours,        Centrally Accomodated

Dear Mx Accomodated,
It seems you’re rather unlucky. What could have been an easy booty call situation with your partner not only being a busy rower, but also living far away (and therefore unable to bother you outside of your sexual liaison) has revealed itself to be a poisoned chalice.

We’ve just entered 2k-one-seven and if you’re still bandying the #NewYearNewMe lie around then you could use it as an excuse to set up a new paradigm in your relationship and redefine your interaction through constructive discussion. Make sure to ask him him about he feels about it first and say “I feel that” rather than accusing.

Alternatively, you could do what most emotionally-closeted English people would do and just slowly irritate him with your habits until he stops doing it. Insist on listening to recordings of your lectures whilst you sleep, make him fetch you Van of Life every hour and then decide you’re not hungry, or buy so many cuddly toys he can’t fit comfortably in your bed thanks to Mr. Snuggles.

If at the end of all of that he still wants to spend the nights with you he either really loves you, or his boat cub.

At least if it ends badly he lives far away from you.

Remember, if you, or your loved ones suffer from a Cambridge problem, ask for advice by emailing [email protected]: