Week one news column: Zombies, Bernie-mania and Comic Sans

I don’t think it can get any crazier than this…


We’ve made it! Week one of Lent 2021 is over and it’s fair to say that our first week back has been a hectic one. Amongst all the pre-reading (that was meant to be completed over the vac… eeek) and adjusting to Cambridge-from-home, there has been an abundance of juicy news. Varsity cancelled the ski trip (cri), the MMLL faculty promised a safety net for its finalists and Rent Strike Cambridge postponed its strike until Easter term.

But, as always, the big headlines are only just the tip of the iceberg. We’ve compiled all those little pieces of local and college news you may have missed, to keep you up to date on all things Cambridge. Given all the rogue things that went on over the past few days, we promise that reading this won’t disappoint:

It’s official! Cambridge is the best place to be during a zombie apocalypse 

Cambridge has officially been declared as the best place to be during a zombie apocalypse (jokes on you O*ford).

This announcement has come from comparison site, SaveOnEnergy, who have actually conducted a very thorough study, so thorough in fact, it could definitely form the basis of a dissertation.

The city came out on top due to its easy access to vast farmland and high usage of renewable energy. Rumour has it that in an unknown Cambridgeshire location, there is an apocalypse “survival farm” complete with a nuclear bunker! You can catch me hiding in there when I’m trying to avoid my weekly seminar.

Are public executions returning at Pembroke?

Earlier in the week Pembroke College created a stir on Twitter when they started work on a new installation in one of their college courts. It turns out they were installing a new sculpture, but for some, the setup seemed to look like public executions were making a comeback.

The college clarified on Twitter that the whole executions theory was “not quite” the real situation, and that actually, they were actually installing a sculpture that has been loaned to them.

Caius grants staff Real Living Wage

In more serious news, an open letter that cites college accounts from 2018-19, has been circulating at Gonville & Caius College this week demanding that the college commits to paying all staff the Real Living Wage.

The letter has been signed by over 50 Caius students, both current and alumni, and by over 35 students from other colleges.

The letter cites the “insufficient and unjust” wages the college pays to some of its workers and that making the commitment to a Real Living Wage “is the only fair and decent thing to do, respecting the dignity of its workers and showing appreciation for all the hard work they do…”

Caius responded to the letter on its website, stating that they ensure that all permanent college staff receive at least the Real Living Wage and that throughout the coronavirus pandemic furloughed staff members have received full salaries.

Lucy Cav to install zer0-carbon accommodation 

Lucy Cavendish College has unveiled plans to build new zero-carbon accommodation with work on the project starting at the end of the month.

The new accommodation will be designed to house both undergraduate and postgraduate students as the college prepares to expand its intake of students.

The project is due to be completed by Michaelmas 2022.

Catz launches ‘Community Spirit Award’ 

St. Catharine’s College has launched its new Community Spirit Award to recognise students who make “an exceptional contribution to bettering the wellbeing of others,” and perform “notable acts of selflessness or kindness,” displaying “community spirit for the benefit of wider society”.

Recipients will be awarded a commemorative badge and letter from the college Master. Students can nominate each other for the award and nominees will then be selected by the JCR and MCR committees.

Selwyn Master vs. Donald Trump

Turns out the inauguration wasn’t the biggest headline relating to the White House this week. Master of Selwyn College, Roger Mosey, the former head of BBC Television News, tweeted out a reflection on the time Donald Trump publicly insulted him on social media.

Mosey retweeted a tweet of Trump’s from 2012 where he called the Selwyn Master a “lightweight who doesn’t have a clue”. Mosey reflected on the jibe writing that it was “the last day that [he] can say [he] was insulted by the President of the United States.”

I bet you didn’t expect that to be in the column this week!

Bernie visits Cambridge 

In keeping with this week’s inauguration in the US, it seems that the notorious Bernie Sanders has been making his way around Cambridge, getting papped almost everywhere in his now infamous mittens (can someone please tell me where I can get a pair?).

Let’s take a look at some of Bernie’s adventures…

I wonder what book he’s waiting for? If it’s Darwin’s Tree of Life sketches he will probably be waiting quite a while…

Bernie taking in the scenes at Christ’s, although he seems to be getting a stoney reception from his companion… get it? Because he’s sitting next to a statue…

If we aren’t allowed on the grass, why is Bernie?!

Bernie definitely won’t be Down-in(g) the dumps in those mittens.

If anyone manages to bump into Bernie next week, can you please ask him where he got those mittens from?

Is Comic Sans making a comeback?

So far we’ve had zombies, public executions, angry Trump, Bernie at the UL, and now… Comic Sans? This must be the craziest week one ever?!

We LOVE Comic Sans (Image Credit: Screenshot from Camfess via Facebook)

Well, this week Comic Sans made quite a stir on Camfess. According to a post that inspired many reactions and comments, writing essays and dissertations in Comic Sans actually boosts productivity and creativity. This made many students (including myself) give it a go:

Comic Sans is officially a life saver (Image Credit: Screenshot from Camfess via Facebook)

We love it when wholesome advice on Camfess actually works!

Pembroke students demand divestment 

This week, students of Pembroke College delivered an open letter to their college governing body demanding a full divestment from fossil fuels by the end of the 2020/21 academic year.

The letter currently stands at over 170 signatures from current students and alumni, but as of yet, no fellows have signed.

The letter cites the climate emergency as the “the single most important issue of our times” and urges Pembroke to join the 14 Cambridge colleges who have already pledged to a full divestment. 

The letter calls on Pembroke to annul all direct investments made in the industries of coal and oil extraction by the end of 2021, and to then follow through by withdrawing all indirect investments by the end of 2023.

Oxford and Cambridge to be connected by rail

Errr… why? Why would we want to make it easier for students from *that* university to enter (invade) our beautiful city? But unfortunately, it’s happening.

East West Rail was this week given a funding boost by the government meaning that eventually a train-line will directly connect Oxford and Cambridge… *sigh* (unless you live in Oxford and study in Cambridge, in which case this will probably be quite useful).

Hurray! That’s it! You have made it to the end of week one. I wonder what’s in store for us in week two, if its anything like this week I’m sure we will be in for a wild ride. And remember… keep an eye out for Bernie!

Feature image credit: Jean-Christophe BENOIST via Wikimedia Commons (Creative Commons License)

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