Social Pariah

A homage to indie disco. In one dark corner a voluptuous female is straddling a skinny boy with a side parting. She repeatedly smacks his hand away from her groin, desperately tugging on the edge of her dress to keep her knickers covered and her dignity intact. I wouldn’t bother love, I’m sure your knickers can’t be sluttier than your dress and your dignity is long gone. Meanwhile on the dance floor, the entire range of New Look florals is boogying its heart out. Thank God they still play The Kooks otherwise us less than hip third years wouldn’t know what was going on. I look around and briefly wonder how I will pretend to my children that my youth was über trendy, mainly I am bemused as to why it is considered ok to have a Hitler moustache when in an “indie” club.

Strolling off campus after a hard day at the library. Truly, we are an academic institution of impressive rigour. Even if I see Sporcle flicking up on laptop screens, I know they are just taking a well-earned break. Glowing with a sense of achievement I see a crowd gathered on the edge of campus. Fifteen students are gathered, peering over the fence into a field. The nervous chatter indicates something has happened. Some kind of accident? I stop as I reach them. “Mate, you heard about that porn star who died from fucking a horse right?” In one sentence all my illusions of student intellectual rigour disappear. The faces around me are not concerned, as I first thought, but fascinated. We are staring at a horse whose erect penis gave fifteen students cause to pause. I stay only a minute but I am fairly sure that in that moment I lost a substantial amount of self-respect.

How not to issue a complaint. “I don’t swear- I’m from Glasgow!” The bouncer is big, bald and not very bright. “Look, I paid to be here so you can’t shove me around and swear at me. I’m going to make a complaint.” The delivery is impressive considering the intoxication levels. “Are you calling me a liar? I said I don’t swear.” “You pushed me and I’ve seen you be mean to other people too.” Some say our drunken protagonist is rowdy, I see her as a hero. “I ain’t never seen you before, you pushed me.” “I didn’t bloody push you!” “I told you, I don’t like fucking swearing!” “Why would I push you? You’re fucking huge?” One of his ‘fucking huge’ hands clamps onto her arm. “That’s it, I don’t have to put up with this shit. This is abuse.” By now our hero is being manoeuvred down the fire escape. “I don’t have to put up with your shit. Nobody likes you.” “You’re barred.” “I’m never coming back.” “I’m never letting you back.” “Good.”

The library makes me want to cry. I look down at my reading then look up at the unmitigated number of unsocialised morons I am committed to studying with. I am mesmerised by a couple snogging opposite me. There’s no need to feel self-conscious about staring, they never come up for air. Don’t get me wrong; I have revised in the library with my boyfriend. But I haven’t revised him. What these two have forgotten is that we’re free now. No parents to burst through your bedroom door because they heard the whoosh of a zip and the creak of a bed spring. Heavy petting can continue undisturbed. So why here? You’re not doing any work so you may as well give up.­­ If you really get your kicks out of library fumbles then for God’s sake go and do it between the shelves, some of us are trying to read Kant.

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