Lies my university told me

Posted on May 9, 2009


A drunk man recently told me that I was a) very friendly and b) very educated. This was in response to my assertion that I was a West Australian marine porn star working on the International Space Station.

I know, I know. I’ve never been to Western Australia.

Regardless, he had a point, as drunks so often do. The only things I have more of than education are debt for the cost of my education, and self-doubt. And DVDs, but that’s because I own every episode of Buffy the Vampire Slayer twice.

I have about one-and-a-half undergraduate degrees in such life-saving areas as ‘Sorcery and the Anthropology of Evil’ (come the zombie apocalypse, and then we’ll see who made frivolous choices, Damian), and a couple of postgraduate qualifications dealing with volatile, extremely high risk apostrophe management issues.

For kicks, I recently re-read some essays I wrote for my paternally tolerant undergrad lecturers. Essays for which I got particularly high marks. I think it will surprise no one to learn that I discovered these essays were terrible. Horrible! And mostly plagiarised, in quote form.

I have since concluded that everything I learned at university — at a cost of one burst appendix, two blood clots on my brain and approximately $30,000 — can be summed up as follows (with apologies to Robert Benchley):

  1. ‘Woman’ and ‘women’ are incorrect spellings. The correct spelling is ‘womyn’.
  2. Banks will offer you a home loan even if you’re wearing second-hand army pants with holes in the knees, and your fortnightly income deposits are the same amount as Centrelink’s fortnightly Austudy payments.
  3. Skate sneakers make all boys better looking.
  4. Plagiarising yourself is not plagiarism.
  5. I can eat one litre of vanilla ice cream for lunch no problem.
  6. Constant Mews’ parents had a strange sense of humour.
  7. When the news media reports something “live”, it’s probably not.
  8. A dangling participle, while not good, is not as dangerous as it sounds.
  9. Almost everything you need to know about any subject is on Google; if it’s not it’s probably not worth knowing.
Posted in: Me! Me! Me!