[light, poppy intro music]
B: Hello everyone and welcome to our second episode of Better Late than Fresher, the wonderful fortnightly podcast where we check in with our fresher student Cohen and see how he’s going with his university experience and pass down a little bit of knowledge, and a bit of wholesome advice. So I guess the first place to start Cohen is- how was O-Week?
C: O-Week was fantastic. Like, you had college O-Week and you had uni O-Week, but they run concurrently, so sometimes you were missing out on stuff. Just for a piece of advice, I didn’t go to a single uni O-Week thing…
B: [laughs] Because I think last time we checked in with you you had a big booklet of stuff that the colleges had given you in terms of daily planning and having everything all sorted out and you were scheduled for O-Week pretty much. Did it go to plan?
C:.. I mean, it went to A plan, I don’t know if it went MY plan, but…
B: [laughs] It went to some sort of plan!
C: Exactly! I think it went better than I was expecting… I mean like, I didn’t go to any of the uni O-Week stuff because everything on at college at the same time was absolutely lit. [laughs] So I made the conscious choice to go to that instead. But it was a little bit more rowdy than I thought it would be…
B: In what sense?
C: In the sense [laughs].
B: In the sense… this sounds like there’s a story behind it.
C: Look, there were a few parties and everything… there was a little bit of alcohol…
B: Little bit of alcohol? Hopefully responsibly?
C: Always responsibly.
B: Always responsibly, that’s good.
C: I didn’t know CapS was a thing until I was there…
B: Aha! So you’ve discovered CapS, or Cap S for the audience. So this is the Captain Stirling pub, yes? Yes! Just down Stirling Highway from UWA, bit of a college institution as far as I’m aware.
C: And let me tell you, it was the most economical night of my life.
C: Let me give you the lowdown on this. First they were doing $5 shots, I didn’t have to pay for a single one of them…
B: Was this on a college tab or something?
C: No! This is because I have very generous friends…
B: Oh excellent.
C: … who were very excited to be there, and I just though ‘I’m just going to roll with it.’
B: Oh good!
C: Then I saw some other friends from Curtin, and the same thing happened except they had a jug and were like ‘Well we don’t want to finish it!’ and I was like ‘I will take this off your hands, happily!’ And then it just kept on happening and happening and happening, and this has never happened to me before… and then after that, we went to the Caltex for a cheeky meat pie…
B: Yeah good.
C: And then the guy in front of me, who was a friend of mine, went to buy one and the guy was like ‘Oh we’re having a two-for-one!’, so I didn’t even have to pay for the pie either, so…
Both: [hysterical laughter]
B: So you just had a completely free night?
C: Literally! Even on the way home, Red Frogs were giving out free donuts, so…
B: What a winning night- you’ve got all your drinks, you’ve got your carbs, or your savoury carbs and then you’ve got your sweet carbs, dessert to finish it off…
C: I did not pay for a single thing that night.
B: That’s excellent. And you got home safely, and everything turned out okay.
C: It did. It was like the first time I gone out and not woken up to my bank account physically crying.
C: Here’s the thing: when you go to a college you get every regional kid thrown together in the same spot…
B: Yeah true!
C: All of whom are at different levels, all of whom are trying to outdo each other at every corner, and it just doesn’t go well, like you think it will but it doesn’t.
B: And that’s I guess, different from Albany in a whole lot of ways?
C: I mean… Albany’s good because everyone’s on the same level. Albany has a nightclub, which was actually voted to be the worst nightclub in the southern hemisphere…
B: Really? By who?
C: Look, you know when people say ‘they?’
B: Yeah, just ‘they’, a collective.
C: Yep, ‘they’ voted for it.
B: I mean, what are some of the bigger differences between here and Albany? That was one of the main questions that some of our lovely listeners sent into us, for Cohen to answer this week.
C: Well I mean that’s the first big ones; differences in nightlife. In Albany, you do this thing called the Terrace Crawl, because every single pub in the town is on Stirling Terrace, and they’re all in a big row, so you can hit one and then go next door and then go next door…
B: Perfect, get kicked out of one, straight into the other.
C: Exactly! And the Studio is right down the end; And then after you’ve finished at the Studio you can hit up the kebab shop which is a street away.
B: Perfect! There you go, its the carbs again; you get all your drinks, and then all your carbs,
C: Exactly! in terms of other things that are different between Albany and Perth… Perth actually has a public transport system!
B: I mean, having lived in the metro all my life it’s still bad; I’d consider it bad, but compared to Albany it’s probably fantastic, Transperth.
C: Look, we’ve got like one bus that runs in Albany. I don’t know where it goes… I don’t know if anyone knows where it goes… I don’t know if they just get on it and hope for the best.
B: Just like, one bus line that just goes around…
C: Pretty much I’ve only ever seen… I’m not a very observant person but I’ve only really seen people get on at two stops as well, so it’s like “Does it run between the two, does it…?”
B: It just goes back, back and forth between two spots…
C: And it’s weird, because you’ve got heaps of buses taking kids to school in the morning- like a lot of buses- and they just disappear during the day! I don’t know where they go..
B: Like actual Transperth buses or?
C: Yeah! So we got all of your old Transperth buses when you guys decided to upgrade… thanks for that…
B: You’re welcome!
C: So they kind of just disappear during the day… I don’t know where they go…
B: That’s bizarre!
C: Pretty much! So yeah, you guys have a public transport system.
B: I mean you don’t really need to worry about that when you’re at college because you just a walk across the road for uni stuff.
C: That’s true. But that leads into another thing I miss about Albany… Albany doesn’t have public transport, because you don’t really need it. Back home, I have my car- you know were talking about this earlier- his name is Lorenzo the Lancer…
B: That’s such a fantastic name! The Australian institution of naming your car.
C: A lot of international students are confused by that… it is an institution. But yeah, that’s something I miss; how easy it is to get around a regional town. Like, the biggest crime that befell me in Albany was that all the fast food restaurants decided to go 24 hours like a month before I left.
C: And like in Albany you want to go and get like some cheeky nuggets you get in the car and you go. You know here, you want some cheeky nuggets and it’s like, cool! You have to catch the 950, then you have to get off here, then you have to walk over there, then you have to walk all the way up there, and 5 yehours ars later you’re in the line and was it even worth it?
B: As the sun rises on the horizon, and you’re finally getting the nuggets in your hand. I guess it’s still a universal problem that the ice cream machine breaks in Albany and here- universal issue.
C: Exactly! It’s universal.
B: How did O-Day go? Because I know that was kind of the apex of O-week…
C: Yeah no, it was really really cool! So we started the day off with what we call the fresher festival which is where we get all the fresher from each college and sort of like line them up at Matilda Bay and we all have to do the fresher dance…
B: The fresher dance! We were talking about it last time.. how did you go? How to St Cats go?
C: Look I don’t want to talk about it!
B: Why do you not want to talk about it!?
C: Okay… like, we practiced so hard… our routine was very polished…
B: Okay, can you reveal now what your routine was because you couldn’t last time?
C: We had voguing in our routine! We had actual voguing in our routine… and we lost to Tommy More!
B: That’s disgusting! [laughs]
C: We came second!
B: Second still pretty good though!
C: …when Shannon Noll came second was it still pretty good though? No, I’m talking that level robbed.
B: [laughs] Absolutely robbed! What did Tommy More do that you didn’t?
C: OK so you know Proud Mary? And Tina used to go absolutely nuts with her dance moves?
C: There was a guy in Tommy More who could actually do them!
B: Oh wow.
C: And he was right at the front wearing these crazy glasses like – I don’t want to say speed dealer glasses, but there’s no beating around the bush there- but he could do it. As annoyed that I was that they could kind of upshow us in that little part there, like it was good! I couldn’t deny it!
B: You didn’t have a Tina Turner dancer!
C: No we didn’t! I’m still bitter… I’m salty.
B: So they did it to Proud Mary?
C: Proud Mary and a couple of other songs, I’m still bit too bitter to remember so…
B: And what did you do?
C: So we did Despacito… undeniably iconic…
B: [groans] Look, iconic for the time… over-played? Debatable.
C:… then we did a Camila Cabello megamix…
C: So we had the words to Havana over the backing track of… what’s it called? Know Better or whatever it is?
B: [sings to tune of song] No you don’t know better…
C: Yeah, that one! So you can be sure that it was funky. And the dance moves were on point too.. the group choreography? It was level 100; like, it was up there, it was foot on the gas
B: After what, weeks of training?
C: Look it felt like weeks! Days of training, training so hard- I got sweaty so many times in the courtyard…
B: Cardio, correct diet..
C: Listen- early mornings..
B: All for second place.
C: Look I’m salty.
B: You heard it here first- St Cat’s got robbed in the fresher dance!
C: They might have deserved to win… but we definitely deserved to win!
B: I see! So where did you go from there? You have fresher dance in the morning…
C: So yeah! Fresher festival was really good, we got to integrate with all the colleges and got to meet all the other kids that live in college… had some food stuff! Straight from there we went out to the oval…
B: James Oval?
C: Yeah, James Oval! I don’t know the name.
B: The one next to the library!
C: We had the open day with all the clubs and everything! Saw everyone at their stalls; it was really cool trying to dodge all the people, you know, trying to shove flyers at you.
B: You got sunburnt pretty badly?
C: I got sunburnt very badly! And we had like a toga party that night as well, so like it wouldn’t have been that bad if we didn’t but I’m wearing a toga so like half of my torso’s exposed and you can see the red V line on top of the toga…
B: Slip Slop Slap kids!
C: Literally! I paid the price.
B: So did you sign up to clubs? I know we were saying last week there’s plenty of clubs out there to sign up to..
C: There are.
B: Did you see Harry Potter Club first and foremost?
C: I didn’t even see them!
B: Whaaaaat? I saw them! They were definitely there, they exist! I know they exist!
C: Are you serious?
B: But what clubs did you hit?
C: Okay well… I’m not going to name the actual club… I’m just going to say that they’re very scary, they terrified me. But I went up and one of them started talking to me and I didn’t realise that he was affiliated with their club! He was just very nice and I was like ‘Wow, it’s just nice that this person is talking to me!’ But then like he drew me closer to the tend and I was like ‘Ughhhhhh!’ and then he sorta just gave me some free stuff and I was like ‘Look, it’s fine…
B: Love the free stuff!
C: … ‘I’m just going to leave’ and then he was like ‘why don’t you just sign our form?’ And was like I can’t take the free stuff and not sign the form! I was like I’m just going to finesse this guy, so I put a fake email address. But I put down my real phone number. Like a fool…
B: [laugh] Awww!
C: Oh my god!
B: And now they’ve been harrassing you ever since?
B: Not good.
C: I did actually finesse a lady at another stall, I don’t wanna say the name-
B: I love that you say the word ‘finesse’ like you’ve just finessed, even though the stuff they’re giving out was free. You’ve just… “I’ve finessed them”
C: yeah exactly! [laughs]
C: Yeah! So I was walking past and this lady was like ‘Hey, hey you!’ and I was like ooooh, and she was kinda pointing at me, I’d better go and say hi and she was like ‘you were here earlier, weren’t you?’ and I was like… ‘cause it was a club I really didn’t want to join and I was kinda like ‘Yeah, I have been here and heard everything, that’s cool’, and she was like ‘Oh, you forgot all your free stuff’ and I was like ‘Alright, thanks!’
B: And just walked off?
C: Yeah, exactly!
B: The price that you pay for free stuff.
C: Exactly, Yeah, I also joined Asian Students in Australia… I’m very caucasian…
B: Fair enough. I mean, were the offerings good enough?
C: It was very very good. He was a very good salesman. He had an app that we could like, join to get like, discounts on stuff. That was sort of like, the hook-in.
C: He was like ‘There’s a fee…’ and we were like, it’s worth it!
B: Yeah, I think most of the club memberships are like five dollars and you get access to different restaurants and discounts and stuff, so it’s totally worth it.
C: Yeah. So we signed up, they gave us some free bubble tea, I didn’t realise what the club was or what it was called until after I’d signed up and it was a little bit of an [stressful noise] moment when I did..
B: [laughs] Don’t quite fit the bill of an Asian student in Australia…
C: Don’t quite fit the brief. Yeah, it’s like, I love what they do but I just don’t fit the brief.
B: That’s alright! I mean you’re a part of it now.
C: I’m happy to support them now actually! They’re a good, good club
B: I’m pretty sure that ASIA hold a whole lot of fun events and stuff as well, so…
C: Oh cool! And I’m a member now…
B: Yeah you’re a member now! And I’m pretty sure it’s not just exclusively Asian students either, I’m pretty sure you’d get some benefit out of it.
B: Alright so that’s the tradition on the final date you going around O-Day- make a fool of yourself, sign up to some stuff…
C: Yeah look, I was a bit stupid. I go back to college, I was like ‘Oh my god I’ve accidentally signed up for two clubs!’ Like I’m not going to be able to handle all this! I talked to my friend Luke who was there and he was like ‘yeah I signed up to the microeconomics club, the macroeconomics club, the Christian club, the politics club, all of this other stuff; and I was like ‘You know what? I think there was a lot of room there that I could have utilised…’ Actually I did go to the Arts Union! And the girl in front of me was talking to the people in the line and I was super keen to join. And like, the most uni student thing ever happened to me, and I wasn’t even a proper uni student yet. She was like ‘It’s a $5 joining fee!’, and I just left the line.
B: Sorry! I can get all of my drinks for free at CapS, I’m out, bye! So Sounds like it was a relatively rewarding O-Day, you signed up for a lot.
C: Yeah! And it’s really cool how everyone’s so happy to represent their club.
B: That’s cool that you got amongst it as well, and that you kinda stepped out of being college and found out what was kind of out there.
C: Yeah it was really really cool.
B: So I guess next week- or, I mean this week when we start recording, but also into next week- you’re going to have your first tutorials!
B: Which is interesting. I mean this first week you would have just had lectures, right?
C: Yeah that’s right!
B: How were they? They were good! Trying to find equally room between taking notes and listening- I think that’s where I fell short.
B: It’s hard to balance, yeah. And tutorials are a whole different kettle of fish because, you know, you go from having a big lecture hall of like 100-200 people down to like a tiny classroom with 20 to 30 people in it and it becomes a bit of a different game to play because you have to balance having a tutor in the room, picking on you, and asking questions, and also preparing beforehand, and also doing really really bad ice-breakers in the first week or two!
C: [sighs] yes.
B: Yeah, that sigh is appropriate!
B: Every tutorial that you go to- I mean, you do a full load of for unit aren’t you?
B:Yes, so you’ll have 4 tutorials this week where you’ll go in, and the tutor will just be like [puts on voice mocking an over-enthusiastic tutor, speaking fast] ‘Hi! Welcome to POLS1101, So we’re going to start off with a fun icebreaker! So can you just sit in circles, and we’re going to start with your name, what you’re studying and a fun fact about yourself!’ And you just have to have a wealth of fun facts ready.
C: [shocked] I’m actually doing that unit! Are you telling me that you have to do them?
b: No no! I mean, it probably will happen… just brainstorm today and tomorrow night, just brainstorm stuff about yourself that people find interesting, because you just have to go in there and go [puts on quiet voice] ‘Hi, my name’s Cohen… I’m a first year, studying politics and international relations and… I’m double jointed!’ [laugh] And like it’s just… people cop out as well! People go ‘oh,I don’t really have anything fun about me!’ and I’m like ‘I’m pretty sure you do, you just don’t want to say it in a public environment!
C: I know what you mean! I’ve already had sort of a tutorial- because I do Spanish, so like I had a language class- let me tell you about the ice breakers that happened there.
B: Okay! [laughs]
C: We had a lecture the day before, but it clashed with one of my other lectures so it didn’t come up my timetable! So I didn’t know that there was a lecture because I’m like, stupid. So I went to my language class and her opening icebreaker was to ask everyone a question in Spanish from the lecture the day before! And she got to me and all was like ‘Si… Cohen, si!’
B: Oh well, sufficiently unprepared for that!
C: It’s my speciality.
B: I was trying to think of some of the most creative ice breakers that I’ve even encountered…
C: We had a really good one – did I tell you this one last week from wing meeting? Our RA gave everyone a roll of toilet paper and he was like you need to break it off somewhere along the roll. Some people were like, I’m going to take one sheet; some people took a whole lot. Then he was like, ‘right size it out in front of you. However many sheets you have is one fact about yourself that you have to share to the group.’
B: [amazed] Ohhhhhhhh!
C: There was a kid who had like 17 pieces, and he was like “I physically cannot!”
B: I guess my name is a fact about me? There was a good one that we had the other day where it was; we’re in groups and the girl who is running it said ‘grab your phones and whatever your phone background is, go to someone and mingle around and explain to them what your backgrounds are about!’ I thought it was really cool.
C: That was a cool one!
B: Because it’s not just sitting there saying [quiet, timid voice] ‘my favourite ice cream flavour is strawberry’.
C: I had a cool one the other day! It was, we’re going to go around the circle and you’re going to tell everyone what fruit you would be and why.
B: Okay, and what did you say?
C: I said that I was a sultana!
C: Because I’m dried up and annoying on the outside, but soft on the outside.
B: Awwww, that’s a good one!
C: People just can’t get enough of me.
B: Once you have one you can’t stop; you’ve got to eat the whole packet of sultanas, dried in the sun… dried and wrinkly in the sun a little bit? I don’t know… like the better version of a grape?
C: What are the main things have still coming to terms with about purpose is that Perth people legitimately think that there’s nothing to do in Perth!
B: Right! we were discussing this the other day
C: Yeah like I went to a Fringe show the other day…
B: What show was it?
C: It it was… The Second Woman! I went with Ava, the girl who lives next to me- she was like ‘you have to see it!’
B: Cool that you’re making friends with your next door neighbour, love that, that’s good!
C: Look, it’s good! And yeah, so it was one woman who is performing the same scene for 24 hours but with 100 different male actors. So the male actor would come in and change the seems slightly every time, and she had to kind of react to it. But yeah, we were outside and there was just this weird man playing a keyboard wearing an astronaut hat made out of glowsticks singing about being a spaceman or something…
B: Wow, that’s a very Fringe and Perth adjacent thing!
B: Particularly- was this in Northbridge?
B: It had to be- that’s a very Northbridge thing.
C: There were people everywhere, people all over the place, and she was like- she’s good, she’s like ‘I don’t understand why people say that there’s nothing to do in Perth!’ and I was like ‘Listen! Let me tell you about where I come from!’
B: Compared to Albany right?
C: Yeah- I mean there’s still a lot to do in Albany…
B: Like it’s probably one of the bigger towns down south, right?
C: It’s one of the bigger ones in the state.
B: For anyone who’s listening who hasn’t been to Albany before, it is, what, a 6 hour drive down?
C: it’s four and a half hours, total population of about 33,000.
B: So it’s not a tiny town!
C: Like, Jimmy Barnes came to Albany
B: I mean if Jimmy Barnes has been there, you’re on the map.
C: If it’s worth his time, that it’s worth your time.
B: Yeah, everyone rags on Perth for not having anything to do but I mean, you’ve seen kind of in the first week and a bit for the first couple weeks you’ve been at uni that’s heaps here and there’s heaps around as well! You’ll discover going out to even just around Broadway, even into the city; as you meet more people you’ll go and do more shit and there’s so much to do!
C: Exactly! And it’s so cool like you make friends with kids who are from Perth and they’ve got their own little cafes that they go to, and you just cut a sort of latch on to them!
B: And adapt!
C:… and go into their world, come back there’s another one from Perth who’s like ‘no I live in this area, let’s go to this place!’ and it’s like networking all the way throughout the city.
B: That’s cool
C: Yeah it’s seriously cool.
B: And talking to exchange students a lot of the time, or international students, that’s like one of the main reasons why if you ask them ‘why did you come to Perth?’ ‘Why’d you choose UWA?’ They say that everything is so close and it’s so green and sunny and there’s beaches and there’s so much around, compared to Sydney and Melbourne, where… maybe Sydney and Melbourne are more exciting and have more stuff, you know, chocked in there, but it’s not as bustling as a metropolis. Like, Sydney super business, and Melbourne’s got huge shopping strips and it’s kind of like Perth’s in the middle of it.
C: Nah, I really like it. Like I just got back from a trip over east; I went to pretty much all the major cities and Perth’s the place I want to be basically.
B: No, Perth’s beautiful. Anything else you want to have a chat about?
C: This is just like the end of the first week of uni but like… am I the only one who feels like they’re already behind?
C: Is that like a normal thing?
B: You’ve become the meme!
C: The term hasn’t even started yet and here I am and you feel like your mind…
B: No that’s a very common thing. Most people go to the first lecture- or not go to their first lecture – and they were just already feel like they’re behind in terms of ‘I’ve meant to have done all these readings, I’ve meant to have had all this prepared!’ And my advice is just go with the flow, I guess. As long as you’re organised and you’re prepared and you’ve got good notes and a good study regime then you’ll be fine for undergrad units. Do you like study or not?
C: I mean I’m going to go ahead and say no! But there’s good facilities around uni – we used one of the study pods today and that was the coolest thing I’ve ever done in my life! It seems really really weird but walking in, you were like ‘right, study mode!’, you know what I mean?
B: And particularly with you clicking in from after a gap year, you’ve got to get used to being in the swing of knowing things again! To put time into knowing things!
C: [laughs] Exactly.
B: And they just renovated I know at least Reid Library- for at least a year it’s been renovated the ground floor of that…
C: Oh really?
B: Yeah! It never used to be like that. And I know the Law Library, as well as a couple of other libraries have all been renovated into with some cool study bits and bobs in there so that’s there plenty of spaces to make a little nook and get into it. But you’ve got plenty of time! Just enjoy the experience, as long as you keep up-to-date each week with what you need to do. That’s probably the best thing that you can do. You’ll be fine.
C: I’m very excited to be honest.
B: Yeah no, it’s good! As per usual if any of our listeners have any questions for Cohen, send them to firstname.lastname@example.org! Send them through and we can answer them next episode, if you want to hear anything from Cohen or I! We seriously have been blown away by the feedback we had from the first episode, the pilot episode- heaps of people have listened to it, Cohen’s next door neighbour at St Cat’s apparently has listened to it..
C: Yeah, she read the transcript and didn’t realise it was me until she talked to me about it!
B: ‘Hang on a second.. are you…?’ We’ve been blown away by the response, thank you guys for listening! Next you’ll justsee our faces on a bus…
C: Keep an eye out!
B: …on the side of Transperth buses, we’ll have a huge listening audience! Anyway, until next time… do you want to do our really bad sign off or do you want to come up with a better one?
C: Wait, you do one then I’ll do one! Thanks for keeping it fresh guys!
Both: [laugh hysterically]
B: That can be this week’s one. I’m Bridget…
C: I’m Cohen…
B: And thanks for keeping it fresh!
Both: [laugh hysterically]
C: See you next week guys, thanks so much for tuning in!
B: Thanks for listening, bye!