Over its long history, Cambridge has developed its rather unique vocabulary. Here are a few terms that might come in useful over the next three years, and cause complete confusion amongst your home friends.
Arc and Anth – Archeology and Anthropology
ASNAC – Anglo Saxon, Norse and Celtic (an unusual Cambridge degree)
The Backs – Pleasant green area west of the river, so called because it backs onto the colleges of Trinity, Clare, King’s, etc
Boaties – Rowers who get up early in the morning to head out in boats up and down the river, at varying levels of skill. Rowing is one of the more popular sports in Cambridge and most people give it a go for at least a term during their time here.
Bumps – An event that occurs at the end of Lent and Easter Terms, where boaties go out and play dodgems with amazingly expensive boats. Worth watching.
Cindies – Club now named Ballare, but formerly and persistently known as Cindies. Plays endless cheese. Gets sweaty.
Ent (elsewhere, a Bop) – An event, generally live music or a DJ, accompanied by cheap drinks. The majority play cheesy music, as that’s the only music the majority of students are willing to dance to, but Girton Ents see a bit more variety.
Fez – Not just a hat, but also the “classy” club in Cambridge.
Gardies – Inspirational Greek Restaurant near Fez, best sampled late at night
Going Down – Going home from Cambridge.
Mahal – Popular curry house for social events, anything goes.
Mathmo – Mathematician
May Week – A week in June, after all exams finish.
May Ball – the most extravagant party you will probably ever see. Ever.
Muso – Music student, or just a musician
NatSci, CompSci, PhysNatSci, BioNatSci – Respectively, Natural Science, Computer Science, Physical Science and Biological Science.
Plodge – Useful term for the Porters’ Lodge
Squash – An event run by societies where current members ply unsuspecting freshers with lots of free chocolate and alcohol in order to convince them to join (and pay the membership fee). Don’t take money with you.
The Tab – Sensationalist web-based Cambridge tabloid. Wishes it was The Sun. (Although given recent events, maybe not.)
TCS – The Cambridge Student. CUSU run newspaper and Varsity’s rival.
Tripos – Another name for your degree, or course.
Van of Life – One of the two chip vans in Market Square in the evenings (the other being Van of Death). The debate over where to go for late night chips before staggering home has been going for donkey’s years and this van, near the pasty shop on Market Square, should be the obvious winner.
Varsity – 1. Popular Cambridge student newspaper. 2. Sports matches between Cambridge and Oxford.