Ignore the NUS puritans, keep binge drinking
The NUS think students should drink less. They can keep their advice.
Recently it came out that several UK universities, the NUS and the Home Office are ganging up on us to curb excess boozing. The plan is to clamp down on all of this binge drinking by banning drinking games and forcing bar staff to be mean to drunk people.
So, the classic sanctimonious rubbish about people ‘drinking too much’ is back. There is always a chorus of ‘do-gooders’ fretting over the lifestyles of intemperate and unruly students. Old people with low self-esteem have always seethed at ‘da youf’ for being happy. Perhaps student-bashing is in vogue because hating chavs isn’t PC anymore?
Disturbingly, the worst puritans seem to be ‘students’ themselves. The self-described ‘students’ of the NUS have taken up patronising us with ill-deserved smug sanctimony. And now they’ve teamed up with the leeches of the nanny state to form a new axis of pettiness.
It’s bad enough that anyone worries that much about other people’s lives. It’s especially upsetting that students could adopt this miserable agenda.
People have a right to be stupid. More than that, though, it is a good thing that students do stupid stuff just for the sake of having fun.
Imagine a university where everyone was restrained, moderate, and even worse, sober. Everyone was healthy. Nobody smoked. Everyone just had the two glasses of red a week. Nobody did drugs. People dressed sensibly. Everyone worked hard and was invested in ethical causes.
It would be dystopian and shit. Students would be empty drones without a sense of joy and individuality.
I’m not saying that drinking heavily is the only thing that is good about student life. Nor is it enough for a full and rich life in the long run. Obviously you should study and think about the future. As a pretentious sort myself, I also think university gives you a great opportunity to dabble in intellectual and cultural stuff too.
So, yeah. Try ‘cafe culture’. Read books. Go to the theatre. Both good stuff and weird shit involving English Lit students prancing around in bizarre costumes. Check out some art. Travel. Wear thick-rimmed glasses and pretend your ‘insights’ into politics or philosophy matter. Go on a protest and feel smug. Go to lectures and get your 2:1 so you don’t end up unemployed and homeless.
But, you should also do the things you can only do when you’re young and have no responsibilities. Experiment. Sexually and with drugs. Try smoking. Sleep around. Go to grotty clubs. Drink as much as you want. Play drinking games. Be ‘excessive’.
At the end of the day, your life’s worth comes down to how happy you are. Long term security and success matter. But so does living in the moment. And so do experimenting and pushing boundaries.
We need a vibrant and chaotic environment where people can do whatever they want. That’s a large part of being a student. We need people to be free to be stupid. We need entertainment. We need to learn from mistakes. And drunk idiots are better company than soulless puritans.
If you’re a student, you should be able to be a fucking student. Keep drinking.