All entries for Sunday 05 March 2006

March 05, 2006

Manifesto: or, How To Save The Union


How are you? I hope you are having a nice Sunday morning, or any day you happen to read this.

I went to Metropolis last night. It was entertaining. I had a good time, although I was tired and didn't feel like dancing much. I enjoyed Guns N Roses and The Clone Doors, they were both rocking with a heavy portion of the good.

Now, something occurred to me when I was leaving. As I passed through the Martetplace, a LOT of people (more than I've seen at Top B at an equivalent time) were dancing and singing along at the top of their lungs to a Lion King megamix.

This got me thinking.

See, the problem with a lot of union events is that people are simply bored of them. I'm aware that people will eventually get bored of anything, but the key notion here is change.

Why insist on the same old dreary themes? We have a rock night, an RnB night, all sorts of different nights which cater to niche audiences. Excellent stuff.

What we need are themed nights which don't necessarily depend on muscial genres.

For example, and I'm spitballing here, take the upcoming September-December term. Ten weeks, ten Saturdays. How do you feel about this:


Based on the apparent success of Metropolis, it's clear that people enjoy hearing music from movies. The wonderful thing about movies is, they're a ripe ground for picking any kind of music, and most of it will be familiar without necessarily having been played to death. Kick the night off at nine with singalongs from old, classic musicals, work your way into 90s film soundtracks via things like the Rocky Horror Picture Show, Grease, Disney, Bond themes, and really get people going with Tarantino, Blues Brothers – fill in your favourites here.

So, say that happens every other week. Would you go? I fucking would.

And in the alternate weeks?

Thing is, the union haven't really thought about what people think is cool. We all know what's cool:


(I'm allowing a week for the Halloween Ball there, but it's entirely possible to make that week Zombies and stick something else in there – Gangsters, maybe.)

So, roll up in costume for prizes, get down to chart pop/rock/RnB/whatever, and run amock in the Union while dressed as Captain Jack. Pirates get A Pirates Life for Me, Ninjas get Battle Without Honour or Humanity, Zombies get Don't Stop Me Now (think Shaun of the Dead) and Robots get Intergalactic. At the end of the term, the attendance is totted up and the winning, er, creature is given a one-off night every term that year. Then, looking at the numbers, possibly repeat the process.

See what I mean? It's not hard. Creativity, variety and fun – that's what we want. Throw in a couple of drinks promotions and wham – there it is. That Pandora's Box is already open, thankfully.

People drink in halls because alcohol's cheap and they're lazy: the thought process involves 'What am I going to miss in the union if I stay here and get whazzed,' and the answer is usually: nothing.

But how many times do you get the opportunity to dress like a Pirate and dance to have loud music with a load of your friends in a large space?

(Minus 50 if you're actually a pirate.)

Tell me what you think. Tell me you couldn't come up with two, three, four events of equal viability in half an hour. Maybe, somehow, we can make the union listen – and have a good time next term.

March 2006

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