Don’t pretend like you didn’t miss me.

13 Dec

Originally posted at Three Blog Night.

It’s been over 2 months since I last wrote something here. I feel negligent (I don’t) and I’m sorry (I’m not), but I’ve been really busy (I haven’t. Well, I have. I don’t know why I told you that I hadn’t, really. I’m just feeling particularly contrary today. [I’m not.]). Lots has happened. I’m not going to write about most of it. Briefly: I started my second year of university, and was perpetually tired. I am home for Christmas now because Oxford terms are 72 hours long. I am still tired.

When I’m in Oxford, I live in college accommodation. This is because my college is one of the few big enough to accommodate everyone for the entirety of their degree, and also because if I avoid stuff like organising my own electricity bills and dealing with landlords then I can pretend that I’m not perilously close to becoming an adult. Which I’m not, so that’s good. College accommodation is of variable quality – universally more than adequate, but some of the finalists and people that are more actively involved in college politics (those infuriating young people that, y’know, actually care about stuff) have shiny new rooms with en-suites and wi-fi. I have a bed, a carpet, a window, a sink, a door… it’s nice. Incidentally, I was talking to someone a few weeks ago who said that he’d lived in an apartment that was really nice, apart from the fact that it didn’t have a door. It might just be that the Oxbridge has gone to my head and I’ve become really spoilt and middle-class, but I think that a door’s pretty essential. It’s like saying, “I have this beautiful new place. Fantastic neighbours, lovely area… I mean, obviously it’s got no roof. And they forgot to put one of the walls in. But apart from that, it’s great.” He writes for the guardian though, so maybe doorless housing is some weird New Age shit that I’m not clued up on yet. Like houmous.

Where I live, I have my own room, and then I share a bathroom and kitchen with 6 others. I think this is pretty much standard as far as student accommodation goes, and it’s nice. I get to live with lots of other young people. Nice. Always people to talk to. Nice. Social. Nice. And I suppose that really all of this is just a round-about way of saying that young people are absolute cunts to live with. When I first arrived at the beginning of term, I noticed 2 signs that someone had written; one in the kitchen saying, “DO NOT UNPLUG THE FRIDGE!!!!” and another in the bathroom that said, “PLEASE PLACE USED PAPER DOWN THE TOILET AND FLUSH AFTER USE”. I laughed when I read these. What a funny joke! It’s funny because this is the University of Oxford but they’re pretending that the people here need shouty prompts to leave electrical equipment plugged in if they want them to work, or to put their shit-rags down the toilet and then flush to make them disappear. Funny! Ha ha ha!

I lament my naivety.

£3,260 per year, I am beginning to realise, is not enough to cover the cost of common sense. Maybe this will be sorted out now that our Tory government has properly fucked us over. Maybe that’s the big plan. Maybe the hike in tuition fees is so that our universities can afford to teach young people that YOU SHOULD MAKE SURE THAT YOU HAVE FLUSHED THE TOILET PROPERLY AFTERWARDS IF YOU ARE GOING TO DO A MASSIVE POO.

I’m not difficult to live with. At least, I don’t think that I am. And I’m a remarkably patient person. But communal student living has triggered the development of my severe and debilitating phobia of plugholes. Everyone that uses our shower has dark hair, which means that the bathroom plughole is like a black hole of matted dread, absorbing all light, hope and small organisms that hit it. And I think that my neighbours are (successfully) trying to use the kitchen sink plughole to develop biological weapons. Christ, the kitchen. There’s an impressive level of skill in the ability of some of my neighbours to not only stack 3 weeks’ worth of dirty crockery without causing the pile to topple, but to remove and wash only the item that they need from that pile and then put it back on top afterwards. It’s like they’re playing a game of lonely Jenga, but with enhanced risks of breakage and dysentery. AND THE FRIDGE! Things happen in there that I didn’t even know were possible, but that must definitely never be talked about. Someone kept an opened tin of tuna somewhere in the back of there for most of the last term, and I sure as hell wasn’t going to be the person to reach in and try to remove it because people have lost limbs that way. So it sat there for weeks, festering. I don’t know why I’m using the past tense. It was still there when I left just over a week ago; maybe it still is. I have seen milk solidify. I have seen yellow cheese become blue cheese. Nobody should ever have to see the things that I have seen. This must be exactly what ‘nam was like.

So, I’ve told you about how I lived in a building for a couple of months. What else? I’ve spent most of the past 9 weeks failing to find myself a project or supervisor for next year. I went to London a few times. I saw some comedy. People in Oxford keep telling me that I should try doing stand-up comedy. I think that the last few weeks have ensured that my mind is broken enough for me to be a comedian, but I also think that the fact that I’m remarkably unfunny would hold me back a little if I were to take that career path. In fact, I might go as far as to say that an ability to say funny things would be vital. But I don’t think that I’ll be able to be a scientist either, because I can’t do science. Nor a writer, evidently. I’m thinking about becoming a builder. I think I’d make a good builder because I really like tea. And bricks. Fucking love bricks.

It’s 5am. I should sleep more.


6 Responses to “Don’t pretend like you didn’t miss me.”

  1. Heather Stevens December 13, 2010 at 10:09 pm #

    Although doing stand-up would probably be good for me. It would give me confidence.

    Wait, WOAH. I’m tripping some serious balls reading this right now. When did I write this?!



  1. Tweets that mention Don’t pretend like you didn’t miss me. « Three Blog Night -- - December 14, 2010

    […] This post was mentioned on Twitter by Heather Stevens, Jessica Stevenson. Jessica Stevenson said: "I really like tea. And bricks. Fucking love bricks." RT @AbrasiveShrub […]


  2. Actually I would probably make a terrible builder. « Three Blog Night - December 17, 2010

    […] to do after I’ve left university and what I’m realistically capable of. I said in my last blog post that I was thinking about becoming a builder but bricks are quite heavy so I might have to […]


  3. The prize-winning writer Heather Stevens. « Three Blog Night - April 15, 2011

    […] out of my ears. More positively: I’ve managed to find a project! At the end of last year I wrote that I’d spent most of my first term failing to find a project. But I have totally gone and […]


  4. The prize-winning writer Heather Stevens. « I have no idea what I'm doing. - December 30, 2011

    […] out of my ears. More positively: I’ve managed to find a project! At the end of last year I wrote that I’d spent most of my first term failing to find a project. But I have totally gone and […]


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