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Sorry we didn’t do the blog. I don’t have an excuse at all. Quite frankly, the best I can think of is that I am surrounded by shit chat.

Day 3

Day 3 was a meteoric rise. Duncan and I decided we were actually quite good at debating, and as a result did somewhat better at debating. We know this because the results of Round 7 were accidentally released. Pity they didn’t accidentally release the SOAS tab.

Our boy Jacob decided he was actually alright at debating too: a decision that found him chairing Round 9.

In the face of Lucas’ refusal to contribute to this final blog post, on the grounds that it was composed for the sole purpose of tarnishing his good name, the lion’s share of responsibility falls to Aidan. Just as it did in the final day of debates. They managed two creditable 2nds and a 4th. Nowhere near good enough to rival Duncan and I’s triple 1st, but then what can you rightfully expect when only one man is at the plough 😉.

In other news, I have become shitposting famous thanks to a fantastic meme following the events of Round 7.

Image may contain: 1 person

Break night was bad. It began with Scottish Caucus which as per usual was a hellscape. Then we went off to the beach bar social, all at assorted levels of intoxication. For some reason, this social was held at a bar that remained open to the public, and, given it was located on a beach, was filled with old people and children. Something tells me they don’t care which order Oxford A-D broke in.

The EUDC tradition of announcing the break on too quiet a microphone in too loud a place continued. Sat at the back of the crowd, mobility aid slowly sinking into the sand, I made out the faint sound of GUU 2 and Durham 1 breaking. We celebrated, although I cannot help thinking that meritocratic judge break forgot one important Round 9 chair.

Finals Day 1

Following the usual lack of St Andrews breaks, none of us made it to breakfast. Resurrecting ourselves around midday, we commenced on a very long and very hot walk for food and then a similarly long and hot walk to the out-rounds venue. I can attest, this was not a good idea.

Arriving at the out-rounds venue, I was reminded that disabled people are obviously no good at this debating malarky. This was evidently clear from the lack of air-conditioning and the flight of stairs to the announcement hall. We managed to watch GUU’s quarter final but I remained very hot.

Now, I cannot really tell you what happened the rest of the day but I don’t imagine it was very much. This is because I have discovered that Scotland is the best country in the world. This is due to its cool temperatures. As is Euros tradition, I had found myself slightly too warm for slightly too long, and then found myself explaining to a Greek paramedic that my blood pressure is, in fact, always like that.

That night, Jacob ended up drowning a litre of Don Simon sangria, while rambling on about how great cheap Spanish wine is, while others drank far more palatable drinks, like chocolate milk and ouzo (mixed together, of course)

Finals Day 2

Finally, we reach the finals. In a surprising turn of events, Duncan found himself at Council expanding the opt-out policy and I found myself having to choose the Council Equity Officer.

Finals come and go and it is announced that Cambridge 1 are the 2019 Champions. I think the Scottish reaction to this is best summed up by a text I received from Malcolm after the announcement which simply read, “I’m retiring.”

It was then we noticed the tab was released (seemingly a month early *cough cough*), and Duncan and I discovered that we were, indeed, actually alright at debating having taken three firsts in a row on day three and ending the competition on -1. That being said, I am now the proud recipient of a 69 speaker score.

Aidan and Lucas ended the competition on -4. They were quite happy with that. No really, they were. It’s well known that Shengwu finished on -4 his first Euros. Watch this space.

Aidan and Jacob took themselves off to bed. Meanwhile, Duncan drank a margarita, Lucas befriended some more Croatians, and I watched as various debaters repeatedly sat on the food table sending it crashing onto the ground along with 30-50 chicken rolls.

So that rounds out Euros. Having discovered that Duncan and I are the best team since Dan and Ryan, all in all, I guess it was fine.

Image may contain: Jacob Roberts, Lucas de Carvalho, Duncan Bowyer and Anna-Ruth Cockerham, people smiling, people standing and outdoor

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Hola (Greek for hello)

We pick up where we left off yesterday.

Our young, intrepid hero ventured off into the Athenian night. While the rest of the St Andrews contingent were sensibly preparing for the next day by sleeping early, Lucas met some Croatians and together they [Redacted].

In the morning, we were treated to a solid Greek breakfast; heavy on the halva, light on the tattie scones.

Round four: THBT it is in the interest of dominant organised religions for their leaders to declare more progressive interpretations of traditional dogma* *e.g. on dietary and pilgrimage requirements, the acceptability of contraception, same-sex relationships

Aidan and Lucas took a heavy second on a religion motion. As penance they each said seven hail Marys.

Anna-Ruth enjoyed being dominant for once, and St Andrews 1 took a second too.

Round five: THBT consumers should predominantly aim to buy locally produced goods and services

Anna-Ruth and Duncan take their first 4th.

Aidan and Lucas have no comment.

Round six: THW break up Disney

Jacob unsuccessfully rolled a chair! He’s on the path to breaking finally.

Aidan says he whipped the living daylights out of Lucas’s “fire” extension to come first and finish on -2.

Duncan did not whip the living daylights out of Anna-Ruth’s lukewarm extension. Anna-Ruth and Duncan took their second 4th causing the A team to slip behind the B team for the first time ending on -4.

Heading into the final day spirits are a little low but after another cracking breakfast we’ll be back in the saddle. But first, Lucas is once again the sole representative of St Andrews at the social.

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Hey everybody. We are in Athens! It is sooooo much nicer here than in Novi Sad.

St Andrews A, St Andrews guns, money, and drugs: the new Holy Trinity, and Jacob had some memorable experiences at the Athens Open over the Weekend.

Firstly, we all shared an airbnb together like a wholesome family. But with no air conditioning we were a very underdressed family.

Then, we did some debating.

St Andrews A had an amazing time at the Athens Open. It was so amazing that they forgot all about it so you should not even bother asking them about it.

St Andrews guns, money, and drugs: the new Holy Trinity were starstruck at the quality of the judges who judged them. Although Lucas denies this.

In the end, St Andrews A finished on -4 while St Andrews guns, money, and drugs: the new Holy Trinity finished on -2.

Jacob still does not know if he won judging, but he did not roll any chairs.

In other news, when Aidan arrived in his hotel room, he asked ‘where is the bin?’ Lucas replied, ‘I don’t know. Just ask Duncan and Anna Ruth.’

By the end of Day 1 of EUDC, Duncan and Anna Ruth were on straights while Lucas and Aidan were on -2. Both Lucas and Aidan maintain that the 3rd that they took in round 3 was wholly unjustified and that they 100% should have received a 1st.

We’ll see how this plays out.

Individually:

  • Lucas insists that he is not on a mission, despite swiping through tinder while writing the blog.
  • Aidan and Jacob collapsed as soon as we returned to the hotel due to our 6:30am (!) start.
  • Anna-Ruth is on a personal crusade to stop people standing in the door ways of the announcement hall (which has carpet up the walls?!).
  • Duncan is enjoying the benefits of having a partner who gets him a room with AC every round.

We’re all looking forward to Day 2

Peace

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[Frankie goes to Hollywood: Welcome to the Pleasure Dome]

Wesley is not going to win worlds.

It’s New Years Day, otherwise known as International Hangover Day. But really, the significance of the arbitrary passage of time is meaningless. So welcome, instead, to the tale of one of the greatest tragedies has ever known. In true 1 Melbourne Place tradition, this will be expressed through 10 songs, carefully crafted to form a musical journey through the epochal end of the universe. Yes, DJ Discourse (reformed) have produced for you the perfect hangover curing playlist. Read and listen on to discover all.

[Bill Withers: Lovely Day-

Perhaps the greatest hurt in this tragic tale stems from a reminder of how spirits were in the beginning. Wesley was going to break. Sam and Malcolm might have broken. Ruth and Matt, according to Nish, could still break. Toni was in good rooms and could break. Richard Hunter (who?) could still break. In short, everyone could still break, and Wesley was going to win worlds.

And indeed, throughout the course of the day, it really was a lovely day. The sun was shining. The temperature was warm. The debates, on the face of it, appeared to go well. Things were looking up. In short, a fine day with fine people in a fine place. A lovely day.

[Talking Heads: Once in a Lifetime]

So lovely was the day that, by its end, it really did feel like we had a once in a lifetime moment to come good. Descending the hill to find beer at Pick n Pay, buying 6 cans for less then £4, staring up at the sun, thoughts turned to excited backtabbing. All the pieces seemed to be feeling into place. The teams were in the right positions. The pull ups and pull downs made sense. The debates felt about right. Both teams thought they’d done well. The final odds of Sam and Malcolm breaking were placed at 1 in 3, later upgraded to 2 in 5. The tab numbers seemed to work. It was going to be fine.

The beer began to flow, and the volume steadily rose. Yet underneath the hedonistic exuberance of youth, a gaping black hole was beginning to emerge.

[Just Jack: Starz in their eyes]

Dreams of fame and fortune grew and grew. Excitement at SSDC caucus (piss up) reached a fever pitch. We were going to enter the realm of champions. As we worked through whatever rubbish was happening at Worlds Council this year, Scotland felt like giants striding over the globe. Lofty statements abounded. Right wing backlash exploded. We could change the world, and we were going to reshape it in the image of Scotland. What William Wallace started, we would finally finish.

Yet look at us now, and we see the truly fractured nature of this facade. The warning signs were emerging. Ideas at caucus became stupid. We ran out of beer. And further backtabbing suggested that maybe, just maybe, results were not all that we thought. The stars were beginning to point elsewhere, yet so fixated were we on acting out Braveheart that frankly, it was all lost in the noise.

We were going to change the world. The final ingredient was ready. Enter the large empty cricket pitch, sound system, and the emergence of dark matter to complete the universe’s transformation. Dark matter, in this instance, appeared as Yakka.

Things were about to get absolutely fucking huge.

[Bee Gees: Tragedy]

Except, wait. They weren’t. For on that fair South African field, the battle was finally exhausted, and the world was lost. Once again, as throughout history, Scotland was annexed by the English. The tradition of valiant defeat continued.

The break rolled. First, no judges broke. Frankly, disgraceful. But no problem, there was still hope in the teams. As we rolled down the break, familiar names appeared: “Oxford”, “Cambridge”, “USU”, “Harvard”. Team codes had changed absolutely nothing.

Great Scottish allies broke. LSE B and Durham A and B all smashed it. Victory smelt near. But then, we entered the forties. And it soon became evident that we had lost. None of us broke. England had triumphed. We were defeated.

At this point, there is only one thing left to say. Fuck debating. There shall be no more discussion of it.

[James Brown: Get Up (I feel like being a) Sex Machine]

Some people took this approach to dealing with disappointment. Legends.

Though actually, even that ended up being disappointing. Another story.

[The Streets: Dry your Eyes Mate]

For the rest though, there was nothing to do but wallow in the great sadness that had overcome them. Upset and grief filled the air.

There was only one thing for it. Fill the void with yakka. And by god, were Scotland good at that. Pure vodka was copiously consumed. Victory here, at least, was assured. 

So assured was it, that noone really has any idea what happened. Matt Singer hosted an after party in his room while passed out. The only possible adjective to describe this: “Huge”

[The Verve: The Drugs Don’t Work]

So it was that we awoke with a jolt on the first morning of the glorious New Year. Jolt is maybe generous. Everyone felt atrocious. Malcolm declared this his second worst hangover ever (and there have been some big ones, be assured). 

Ignorance of the advice on yakka, it seemed, had contributed to further pain. Don’t pre drink, they said. After 4 cans, Matt and Sam declared they had not pre-drank enough. How wrong they were to be proven.

Don’t eat the lemons, they said. After eating several, Ruth thought she could do anything. How wrong she was to be proven.

And had the yakka cured the crushing defeat? Probably, but it also drove Scotland into a pernicious hungover stasis. This hangover was big.

Paracetamol didn’t work. Anti diarrhoea medicine didn’t work. Only a long, arduous and difficult expedition to the local MacDonalds could save us.

Over chicken nuggets, finally, we vowed to fight another day. 

[Crowded House: Don’t Dream it’s Over]

And so, dear reader, that was it. Now we bask in the South African sun, hangover slowly dissipating. Battles lie behind us, but the war is still to come. For now we enter the epoch defining war of the social tab.

Wish us luck, and never forget this. They’ll be talking about it in Aikmans for years to come. Because there, everyone knows your name. And never forget, that name is St Andrews motherfucking Union Debating Society, the OLDEST and FINEST debating society the world has ever known. Don’t ever forget it.

[Aikmans: Aikmans Theme song]

Yours,

DJ Discourse (reformed)

PS: You can sample these musical delights in all their joined together glory here: https://open.spotify.com/user/sammaybee/playlist/0fEP5zjpFZ1YVwD2LpeQbe?si=FDuQAm3cSYO2PsDyPtXy5g

PPS: your writer was hungover as fuck when this was written so please forgive them if this makes absolutely no sense whatsoever, no responsibility is taken for you having wasted 5 minutes reading this

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Wesley still might win Worlds.

It’s day 2 of debating, and it’s been a remarkable day of highs and lows and even lower lows. We’ve soared, we’ve fallen, we’ve flamed ), we’ve shat all over, we’ve been shat all over. In summary, it’s chaos (except the actual organisation of the tournament, which has been excellent and fire and extremely on time, well done Cape Town).

First, what you’ve actually been waiting for (lol, saddos): the preamble. Today’s delicious preamble is on countries night, the internationally renowned feast of cultural sharing, friendship across nations, and global peace. Or, in a short form, a big piss up. Being competitive people, we didn’t get that drunk, but at least we went (shoutout to boring UDS alumni such as that guy who broke at Euros who have historically boycotted this illustrious event). Highlights mostly consisted of a ridiculously strong rum from Australia that genuinely was still on fire in my throat about 10 minutes after the event, but most importantly, stealing England’s table. Freedom reigned. Fuck Brexit. Scotland won the biggest battle of all.

Or rather, some English and other foreign twats who have culturally appropriated Scottish culture acted like twats.

Anyway, debating.

St Andrews A (otherwise known as team codes have seriously erased our big dick A team energy): 2nd, 4th, 1st (-1)

St Andrews B (otherwise known as continued erasure by team codes that no one can be reminded who the REAL St. Andrews bois are): 3rd, 3rd, 4th (-4)

So, what happened. The end of the universe was postponed slightly, but still, the signs are ominous. Malcolm and Sam did ok on a decolonisation debate (meh maybe expected Africa etc), then lost an economics debate solely consisting of wanky terms about financial markets that Malcolm didn’t understand (unheard of), and won a debate on municipal government (basically Malcolm’s wet dreams). Highlight perhaps being Sam stating in said debate that bankers (soon to be including himself) are all fucking twats, don’t matter, and are not real people. Throughout the entire debate on CDCs, CDOs, derivatives and HFTs, Malcolm simply had to resort to dreams of the gym. He’ll be back soon. Nevertheless, still competitive and see what happens tomorrow, where as Malcolm puts it, a load of nerds have no idea what’s coming. In his words, some nerds are gonna be totally RINSED.

Ruth and Matt got BIG ERASURE. BAD JUDGES. BAD****JUDGES. ATROCIOUS CALLS. Sad!

But seriously. R5 the prominent well known somewhat important judge who shall not be named but may be well known to those in the know hated their case so much he decided to simply state that their case was wrong, even though no one said so, and therefore THEY HAD TO TAKE THE 3RD. ABSOLUTE BULLSHIT.

Ah, but how can it get any worse? Well, enter another somewhat important prominent judge in a slightly different capacity in R6. The core principle that beat our valiant compatriots: people in cities work harder so they are more deserving of the benefits of the state. Yup. Fuck St Andrews. Fuck Clent.

So, get ready for some people to get rekt by some spicy cases eh.

But, real news people. Wesley, Wesley, Wesley. The laws of physics are hanging by a thread. For the great boy is on -1. He still gonna break. The great showdown between St Andrews and Wesley beckons. The world is about to crash. Prepare for Ctrl Alt Delete.

Wish us luck for tomorrow, send bad judge prayers, and see you all hungover as fuck on New Years Day.

Peace out bros

Xxxx

Ps: Malcolm on a mission update: Real tight gym shirt today. It looked HUGE. Shame about the chunky legs though.

P.P.S.

Sam: “Toni what is up with your keyboard it’s messed up.”

Toni: “It’s Japanese. Stop being racist.”

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Howzit Cape Town

 

Wesley is going to win worlds.
Welcome, one and all, to the intense rollercoaster otherwise known as Cape Town WUDC. Take a glass, sit down by your fire, stare outside at the rain, and think about Malcolm wearing shorts. It’s sunny here, and the debating is almost as intense as the fiery ball in the sky.
Before talking about debating, clearly, we need the preamble. Matt Singer and Sam Maybee went to Ethiopia, and yeah, up yours guys, we’re still alive. Indeed the trip was so unremarkable and nice that there is almost nothing to say about it, though more than some shit layover in some shit lounge in some shit airport in the Middle East (cough Ruth cough). But, have you ever had Ethiopian food in Ethiopia? No you haven’t, but we have, so Matt and I have already basically won worlds. Checkmate.
What’s the point of debating after that achievement, I hear you cry! Well, apparently we’ve wasted all this money to be here and speak for 63 minutes each (yes, the average length of a single episode of your favourite TV programme), so we’d best talk about it.
First note. This is almost scarily well organised. We finished on time. The tab hasn’t broken. The org comm are walking around bare foot and seem super chill. The food is edible. It’s sunny. It’s basically paradise. So top marks in all departments for Cape Town so far (social tab to be released shortly).
Second note. Debating.
Maybee and Risk (formerly known as St Andrews A, fucking team codes ruining our zen): 4th, 1st, 1st
Batten and Singer (formerly known as St Andrews B, fucking team codes hurting Malcolm and Sams feelings): 2nd, 1st, 3rd
In sum, today broke the laws of physics. Sam and Malcolm lost a motion on Africa (unheard of), won a motion arguing torture is good (unheard of), and won a motion in social justice (unheard of). We shall see what tomorrow brings. Matt and Dan had a great day of consistency and being fire woo.
Interestingly, everyone else in SSDC is also on straights. So tomorrow shall be a bloodbath. But Wesley (remember?!) is on +1. +1! Chilling with the big guys. Slaying giants. Having structure. The laws of physics have been well and truly broken.
Join us tomorrow to witness the final collapse of the universe into some phat black hole, it will be lit. Suggestions on a postcard for what Wesley should do to celebrate winning worlds- winners released tomorrow.
St Andrews xxxx
PS: Malcolm on a mission update: Big (tight) t shirt. Big (tight) shorts. Big muscles.
PPS: Follow ur boiz on Instagram @udsblog

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Zbogom EUDC!

It’s the final blog post of EUDC 2018. I hope the rest of the St Andrews team had as good a time speaking together as I did and are having good journeys home. The tab has now been released so we have spicy details on the closed rounds.

St Andrews A received 4th, 1st and 4th;
St Andrews B received 3rd, 2nd and 2nd.

Both St Andrews teams finished EUDC 2018 with 13 team points, although the tradition of the B team finishing ahead of A continues its hiatus with St Andrews A receiving high marks in speaker points including 82s for both Lucas and Duncan in round 8. Congratulations to both and to everyone for strong performances, including Toni for her success judging some of the top rooms. I must personally thank Anna Ruth with whom I had the honour of speaking, witnessing her deliver some excellent and impassioned speeches.

Back to what you’re really here for: discourses on drunkenness. Yakka night was a fantastic vodka-fuelled experience. I quickly upgraded the can of local beer I had brought by filling it with the citrusy elixir. Before long we were all chatting vivaciously, receiving wisdom and cocktail recipes from SSDC old hands. I must salute Toni and Anna Ruth for their restraint, however, as both sensibly stuck to less potent beverages and avoided awaking on Saturday with a deathly hangover (and a bruised knee from an overenthusiastic attempt to climb the Hotel Park staircase).

The following day brought the EUDC finals which were held at a restaurant in the middle of Serbian woodlands. The peculiarity of the venue (and the bizarre cold-meats-and-bread free-for-all dinner) was more than made up for with the free drink tokens and excellent finals and ESL finals. Generous Serbian measures of vodka were poured aplenty and we ended the evening by posing in the SSDC photo. Congratulations to Tel Aviv who won both the ESL and Open Finals; Lucia Arce Cubas who brilliantly landed top speaker in both ESL and open categories; and the King of Scotland, Owen Mooney, who excellently chaired the Open Final. This morning, then, we packed up and finally said zbogom to EUDC. Before I sign off on this year’s blog I must add that it was an honour and a privilege to represent the UDS at EUDC. Indeed, an amazing way to round off an incredible first year of debating.

Živi dugo i prosperitetno!

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