Every Wednesday the majority of active young Newcastle university students don ludicrous fancy dress, imbibe an equally ludicrous amount of cheap alcohol and have a jolly nice time demonstrating their athletic prowess in a series of basic mating rituals.
Although this was something I took part in on a fairly regular basis in first year, with age comes wisdom and the downsides of going out with a fiver (two £2 trebles and £1 club entry) have far outweighed the economic benefits.
However, last night I was dragged out. The sporty flatmate has a smaller sibling up to stay and it was pretty much obligatory that we showed him a good time, AU (Athletic Union)style. So, abandoning hosiery for the first time in six weeks, putting as much makeup on as the average drag queen and trying to flex some muscle I embarked upon the AU experience.
A pint or two later, some army camouflage paint in dubious places and and I was almost in the swing of it. Getting caught up in Newcastle's Women's Rugby parade - dressed as babies, mums and grans - during some obligatory chanting: "he stuck his c*** into my q*** and I said get in, get out, stop f****** about you're playing for Newcastle now" and the ever popular, somewhat socio-politically dubious anti-"poly" ditties - and any kind of acceptance I'd begun to feel was rapidly vanishing away.
My pariah state once within the official AU club did have some brilliant comedy advantages, however. My favourite being the following conversation:
Rugby Boy: "Hey, what bar crawl are you on?"
Me: "errm scuba?"
R.B: "cool. I play rugby"
Me: "I see"
R.B: "So, scuba, huh?"
Me: "Yes. I don't actually dive, my flatmate's just the social sec. I don't do any sport of any kind"
R.B: "I'd go diving any time with you"
Me: "I don't dive."
Flatmate rescued me just before the inevitable lunge.