26/09/12 - Freshers Week Extravaganza 3: Socialising

This aspect of university life is the one that most people look forward to and focus on, especially in Freshers Week.  And I won't deny it; it's an essential part of the university experience.  You can enjoy your newfound freedom without worrying about what time you get home or waking your parents up with your drunken stumblings.  The opportunities for socialising will be endless - themed club nights, events every night at your Student Union, cheap drinks.  It will probably be hard to resist.  And I'm not saying you should resist.  

I love a night out.  Yes, I'm a bit of a geek and spend a lot of time on the Internet.  Yes, I'm quite a girly girl sometimes and don't like the thought of a stranger pouring drinks down my new dress.  But ultimately, I like to let my hair down on a night out as much as the next person...in fact, I am writing this in the early hours of the morning with a full face of make-up and aching feet from killer heels (I had a quiet one, hence my legible typing!)  And let's be honest, I'm a (sort of) Scouser at heart.  We have a reputation to uphold!  But, despite all that, I can appreciate that there are some people who aren't like me.  Some people can't think of anything worse than going to a darkened, noisy room with a bunch of inebriated idiots who are undoubtedly being obnoxious.  Some people just don't like alcohol or the idea and practise of getting out of control.  If you are one of these people, don't worry.  Not everyone will want to go out every night of Freshers.  The girls I lived with in first year all skipped one night out to eat brownies and watch 'The Parent Trap'...and it was one of the best nights we had; a chance to actually get to know your new housemates rather than just getting drunk with them.  Don't feel pressured into doing anything you don't want to - it may be tough to get away without some gentle (or otherwise) teasing if you choose to stay in.  But I regularly choose a night in front of the telly over a night on the tiles.  There's nothing wrong with it, particularly when you're feeling knackered or are running out of cash.

When you do venture to out on a drinking extravaganza - which is likely to happen unless you are bless with an iron will for self control - just...be careful, yeah?  I don't want this to turn into one of those PSHE videos you get in school about drinking in moderation and all the bad stuff that happens when you get drunk.  Those videos make valid points and it always pays to be sensible...but everyone knows it isn't always that easy.  I will grudgingly admit - and my friends will tell you with glee - that I have made some bad decisions and made a fool of myself whilst under the influence.  Most of us have at one point or another.  And I don't recommend it.  Particularly not in Freshers Week.  A bad reputation is easy to gain and difficult to shake.  Nicknames and anecdotes relating to things you'd rather forget will not go away.  Trust me, your drunken antics will haunt you for years to come.  I am still reminded of things that I did two years ago, and I constantly remind my friend of a certain incident at a house party back when we were in high school.  This stuff isn't easily forgotten...especially when it's funny.  So I'm going to get the dull stuff out of the way here: never get in an unmarked taxi, stick with a friend (and random guys who seem lovely are not friends), use protection, drink lots of water, don't walk home alone, always have your key, etc etc.  You know the drill.

Don't be afraid of fancy dress.  It's all part and parcel on the university experience.  There will be obscene amounts of opportunity to put on a silly outfit and hit a club.  Most SU clubs do themed nights once a week, encouraging you to wear anything from school uniform to your pyjamas to the guise of an extra on The Only Way Is Essex.  And it's so much fun!  Personally, I don't understand people who don't like fancy dress...although I know there are those people out there.  I feel like it makes getting ready to go out easier - you already know what you're going to wear and it doesn't matter if you look funny, because everyone will.  So embrace it.  You can pull a costume together out of a few bits and pieces you have lying around, so it doesn't have to be an expensive or time-consuming habit.

Hallowe'en 2010
Toga party
Favourite musicals social

Back to School theme
Northern Monkeys vs Southern Fairies social
Hallowe'en 2011
999 themed night
See?  So much fun!

If you have any handy hints for staying safe as well as having a good time and making the most of Freshers Week, leave them below!  Also, let me know what fancy dress themes you've taken part in...it's always interesting to see what different universities do.