16 ways to spot a southerner at uni: A guide

They couldn’t make a decent cuppa if they tried

Ah, the great North-South debate. It's been raging on since time immemorial, dividing the wholesome Northern students from their painfully "edgy" Southern counterparts.

But what really makes a Southerner a Southerner? Is it that they call tea "dinner"? Is it that their tinder bios are always excruciatingly lame? Is it that they're utterly incapable of making a half-decent brew?!

Well, fret no more. We've come up with a handy guide to separate the "baps" and "rolls" of this world once and for all. Here are 16 ways to spot a Southerner at uni:

1. They are forever screeching about being cold

As soon as the temperature drops below 10 degrees, spotting a Southerner at uni is easy. You'll hear them first, sobbing that they can't feel their fingers. Then, next thing you know, their desperate pleads to turn on the heating will grate away at the very fabric of your soul.

You'll find yourself wondering about their insane susceptibility to the cold at odd times of the day. "But it's only October," you'll think. They'll complain regardless. Pathetic.

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2. They either wear Fila Disruptors or Nike Air Force 1, and there's no in between

When it comes to creps, Southerners fall into two distinct camps: Filas or Air Force 1s. There is no middle ground.

It's crucial to note that both shoes must be just the right level of artfully distressed. If they're too clean, you're trying too hard. If they're too dirty, you're a literal gremlin. And, wow, being a Southerner is tough.

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3. Their wardrobe is exclusively made up of vintage Champion jumpers

Ah, the humble vintage Champion jumper. It's a staple piece in any Southerner's wardrobe. Paired with black trousers, white tube socks, and Air Force ones, it's the best thing to come from the South since sliced bread.

It's also the least original, most done before, un-iconic fit out there. It's the kind of thing you throw on when you earnestly believe that Depop is a valid substitute for a personality. Two words: Try harder.

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4. They all wear that puffer jacket

Just like you will never catch a Northerner who doesn't know how to make a brew, you will never catch a Southerner who doesn't own that puffer jacket.

There are various incarnations of the legendary coat. Oversized, cropped, from Urban Outiftters or not from Urban Outfitters. But one thing always remains true: the puffer jacket is as Southern as it gets.

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Puffa season, baby!!

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5. Their tinder bios are just TRAGIC

One of the easiest ways to distinguish a Southerner from a Northerner is to check their Tinder bio.

Where a Northerner will write something sweet (but kinda weak), like "loves dogs" or "I want to go on adventures", a Southerner will say something utterly bleak, like "may not be the best but you'll have a good time" or "big schlong, big heart" – totally cool and not lame at all. Get in my basket.

6. They lurk in the smoking area at clubs

No one knows how, when, or why this started but when it comes to clubbing, Southerner's will not be caught dead on the dancefloor. Like flies to honey, they gravitate straight towards the smoking area.

There, under a veil of smoke and desperately edgy vibes, you'll find them. "Spare a straight?", you'll say. They'll look you up and down, noting that you're not wearing a pair of chunky Filas. You don't even look like you have an edgy finstagram to upload these wavey smoking pics to after. And, like, what even is the point if you don't do that? "Not today," they'll mutter. "Not today."

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7. They run an "alternative" instagram

Much like their finsta accounts, all Southerners will have an "alternative" instagram. Alternative, in this case, meaning vibey. Their feed will be littered with collages, VSCO filters, and edgy mirror pics. All of their posts will be accompanied by deep, introspective captions, like "seek what sets your soul on fire", or the angel emoji – no exceptions.

And, honestly, Northerners could never.

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8. Adding you on LinkedIn is their idea of good chat

Have you ever gone to the club, met someone cute, and walked away with nothing but a vague sense of disappointment and a new contact on LinkedIn? If so, you've definitely just encountered a Southerner.

God knows what led them to conflate a real, human connection with a connection on LinkedIn but this is the reality we live in, people. The simulation is real and Southerners are a big part of it. Let's just say you wont be endorsing them for their romance skills.

9. Their uni room is a cold and desolate place

Unlike Northerners, Southerners simply don't have the skills to make their uni box room homely. Despite the plethora of Primarks, Wilkos and Ikeas about, they simply refuse to spruce things up.

In their room, you will find four things: Bleach white walls, a meagre string of dim fairy lights, some "wavey" polaroids, and a half-empty yankee candle. To sum it up in one word? Sad.

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10. They couldn't make a decent cuppa if their life depended on it

It is a truth universally acknowledged that a Southerner's greatest flaw is their total inability to make a half decent brew. It's hard to pin down exactly where they go wrong, but there's just something missing. Like a bus without wheels on, or Bake-Off without Mary Berry.

I guess that if you really dig into it, they just don't possess that certain je ne sais quoi required to finesse a cuppa. Tragic? Yes. Classic Southerner? Indeed.

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11. They are physically incapable of walking at a normal human pace

Perhaps the most unnerving trait of a Southerner is their unshakeable need to speed about campus like their lives depend on it.

Some speculate that this habit stems from years of navigating the tube, a sort of muscle memory response. Others hear it's a genetic condition. All you'll know is that if you so much as dare to drop below jogging speed when a Southerner's in your path, they'll skin you alive with a rusty oyster card.

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12. They are OBSESSED with Pret

If you have a Pret on campus, Southerners will be there. If you don't, Southerners will still be there.

They enjoy whiling their days away, downing matcha chai lattes and bashing away on their laptops. Remember, not all Pret customers are Southerners but all Southerners are Pret customers.

13. They can't hold their drink

It's a tragic fact of life that Southerners can't hold their drink – in the same way Northerners can't not say "thank you" to bus drivers on the way out.

No matter the drink, (although let's face it: It's a G&T) Southerners are doomed to end every night out hunched over the toilet seat, questioning where it all went so wrong. Sad? Absolutely. Lame? Also, absolutely.

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14. They call "tea" dinner

Sure, Southerners aren't all the same. But if there's one thing they can all agree on, it's that's 'tea' is a beverage and 'dinner' is dinner. Sorry, but dem's the rules.

15: They wear the same combo of rolled up black jeans and white tube socks

It's like the vintage Champions jumper but for your feet. Perfect for those moments when you want to broadcast that you're a Southerner to the world but in an understated, wavey kinda way.

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16: They radiate sad boy vibes

It's rumoured that the 's' in 'Southerner' stands for sad boy. No one is 100 per cent sure on the science behind it, but you'd be pretty sad too if you had to wear the same distressed pair of Air Force 1s for the rest of your life. Raise a glass x

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If you're ever in doubt, just consult these 16 foolproof methods to spot the Southerners at your uni.

And remember, although we are divided by many things, at least we'll always have Greggs.

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