JACK BENDA, Week 6: a smug prelimmer, Jack has woken up and realised that people actually have exams and probably don’t want to hear about politics and stuff anymore…
So here are simply 9 places to revise in Cambridge. No opinion here, just some good old fashioned factual listicle journalism.
1 – Costa (in the Grand Arcade)
John Lewis looms like a mutually owned tombstone protruding from the beating heart of Cambridge capitalism – the shopping centre. Through the clacking of feet and the quiet murmur of hunting consumers, the same tune can be heard rattling over and over from the piano on the first floor. After having sold your laptop and books in order to buy a small Americano, you can sit, hollow in the knowledge that *this* is all that waits after university.
The piano gets a bit distracting but ambient noise helps me revise sometimes.
2 – Starbucks
Do you feel like you are being chewed up and spat out by the Cambridge tripos system? Why not escape into the magical world of exploitative capitalism! The misspelt name on the unethically sourced, non-biodegradable take-away cup will make you feel special in the eyes of the profit machine. Stand up to the nasty Tory government by spending your student loan at a company that doesn’t pay UK tax!
Oh and, while the coffee tastes like dirt, the pseudo-vintage atmosphere is ok for revision.
3 – McDonald’s
Destroy your body with trans-fats now before the government steals our NHS for corporate gain! The chairs are designed to be especially uncomfortable so consumers eat and beat; pay and piss off. Coincidentally, this works well to keep you on your toes when revising Marx for your Politics part one paper! Live the dream.
Ok for revision too (if you can deal with the ambient noise of crying children and bleeping deep fat fryers).
4 – Café Rouge
Of course with the rise of UKIP and the inevitable tighter immigration laws on the horizon, “authentic” French cuisine will shortly be a distant memory. Make the most of it while it lasts. You don’t mind paying that fiver for a coffee because of residual guilt from Agincourt.
Plus, if you do MML the waiters can help you with your translation paper!
5 – Spoons
It’s a bit like the UL – you get IDd on your way in and inevitably end up staggering out looking lost. Unlike the UL, the membership isn’t nine grand a year. The cheap alcohol couples with the murky light, allowing you to feel, just for a while, like you have escaped the all-hearing ear of the Snooper’s Charter and the all-seeing eye of Google Street View. Your phone notifies you that ‘Google Earth wants to use your location’. You can run but you cannot hide.
It’s a bit dark for reading in some bits, but the friendly bar staff and cheery customers will motivate you to finish that chapter on Hobbes.
6 – The Cambridge Wine Merchants
Destroy capitalism and support the cause by sporting the colours of revolution – red trousers and black blazers should do. Be sure to order plenty of champagne to numb your senses to the physical pain of alienation. By investing your student loan into independent businesses (like the Wine Merchants), then we can dismantle monopolisation one step at a time.
The great light and comfy-not-too-comfy chairs make this a great place to work, just so long as daddy subsidises the wine with his banking bonus.
Alternatively, literally go to Revolution. Be not deceived by the name, for the entire venue is an analogue for the mass false-conciousness imposed by the powers that be. Know your enemy. The first step to dismantling capitalism is by analysing manifestations of cultural hegemony.
Anyway, revision is nearly impossible because of the lack of light, but if you use a laptop then the music gets you really pumped!
8 – In a master’s garden
Subvert the triangular authoritarian structure of the Cambridge collegiate system by breaking into a master’s garden and studying there. Transcend class division and reject arbitrary, traditional domination by reading Weber in the forbidden summer breeze.
Also the whole ‘chained off’ thing makes these very quiet places to study, with no noisy tourists to distract you.
9 – Hole in the ground
Revision/revolution failing? Why not jump down a rabbit hole like the rest of Britain. Escape from the water-cannons, hypocritical immigration rhetoric and ironically ill-suited cabinet ministers by literally digging a hole and working in it.
The damp, cool earth keeps you both hydrated and at optimum working temperature!
Who says you should have to rot away in some dark library – you have nothing to lose but your chains.