No Good Boyo has embarked on a series of posts about his universities and Daphne Wayne-Bough recently made me think about my own Alma Mater, which is The Open University (mostly), and what its slogan might be. She spotted that the existing slogan began “OU Students Do It...” but that the rest was then obscured by my noble visage. Room there I’m sure you’ll agree for enough double-entendre to make it worth the bother. So, what should the slogan be?
#1: OU Students Do It In Their Spare Time
True. This is what Daphne thinks it currently is, and she may be right for all I know.
#2: OU Students Do It From A Distance
Also true. And suggesting that they are aloof, lone wolves, rather in the manner of Clint Eastwood.
#3: OU Students Do It All The Time
Yep, you have to keep at it; and you also have to do it whilst holding down a full-time job, otherwise it feels like cheating. It may sound tiring but like any other mono-mania (dipso-, megalo-, ego-, klepto-, nympho-, etc) it’s simply another way of getting your rocks off!! Not always so much fun for those around you of course (ok, tigers, the jury’s still out on nympho-).
#4: OU Students Do It Anywhere
Studying should be done in a study, but no OU student will have one of these. Instead they’ll have a kitchen table, a bed-sit, or simply a cardboard box in a Woolworth’s doorway. But they’re great improvisers: they do it when the kids are watching cartoons, at night when keeping the light on most annoys the landlord, or in the soft toys section after bribing the security guards to go on a prolonged “comfort break”.
#5: OU Students Do It For Free
Studying with the OU is really cheap compared to other ways of doing your head in. Why get yourself into the clasps of usury by paying out to one of those gaudy, tarted-up Jezebels with stupid names like “Oxbridge” or “Redbrick”? Why pay for it??? I never have, much. At the OU your bank balance increases at the same rate as your brain, and not having had a life for several years will have seemed a small price to pay.
#6: OU Students Do It When You Don’t Want Them To
Follows logically from #3. Actually, OU rapists are surprising rare considering the frustrations of distance learning. However, the rape of OU students is a distressingly common event. This is because they’re so knackered at end of an evening’s study (after a hard day at the job they’re so desperate to leave) that their wives/husbands/cell-mates really have no other choice. “Oh give it rest, I’m exhausted - can’t you wait another 3 years?? Oh all right, if you must, but I’ll be asleep”.
#7: OU Students Do It: The University Of Life
Rather a portmanteau title, admittedly, but then so was “Carry On... Follow That Camel”. (No graduate has more right to inverted snobbery than an OU graduate, so why not even “The University Of Hard Knocks”?). And you have to admit that it’s simple but brilliant. The pinheads who think up slogans like “Pure Genius” for Guinness beer etc get paid a fortune, so where’s mine?