[Light, poppy intro music]
Bridget: Hello everyone! And welcome to our eleventh 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 big university experience, and we pass down a little bit of knowledge, a little bit of advice. Cohen, why have you brought an egg into the studio?
Cohen: You didn’t have to come for me like that.
Bridget and Cohen: [laughs]
B: Please explain why you brought an egg into the studio.
C: So for those of you who did not join us last week, it is Assassins Week at my college of St. Catherine’s this week. So. On Monday, we all had to line up out, like at this table, and they gave us a playing card each. And on the front of the playing card was somebody’s actual name, and you had to find them and kill them.
B: Right. Okay.
C: BUT, you had a specific weapon that you could only use each day, and there’s a specific immunity item that renders you immune, obviously, everyday as well. So today this egg is the immunity item, and I’m clutching to it like it’s the Lord and Saviour, Jesus Christ.
B: So to those who haven’t listened to the previous episode, Assassins is a college game-
C: -college staple.
B: A staple of the college community, where you effectively go around and try and “kill”, not really, but try and get other members of the college tagged out. So you’re down to how many people? Started with how many?
C: We started with 110. And there’s about 15 people left.
B: OOH, and it ends on… end of the week? Sunday?
C: It ends on Sunday or until the last person is dead.
B: So, for today, so long as you hold this egg, which is perched on our table-
C: It’s in my hand now, cause you’re making me nervous.
B: [laughs] Because I’m gonna tag you out? You’re safe from anyone who tagged you today?
C: Yes, and the weapon for today is a pillow, so you just gotta smack them with a pillow.
B: So even if you’re on college campus, if someone’s walking around with a pillow, you know that looks suspicious.
C: Yeah, so they have safe zones but they change everyday. So like, you can’t-
B: This is complicated!
C: I know! The basic ones are: you can’t kill someone in the dining hall- the kitchen staff don’t really like it-, you can’t kill someone in their room, and you can’t kill someone in the bathroom, but they got rid of all three of those the other day, and they brought the kitchen one back for obvious reasons. And you can’t kill someone in class or if they’re at work, which is understandable. So people will literally follow you to class, and will wait for you to finish.
C: [Laughs] Literally.
B: That’s crazy! So they’ll stay outside the front and wait for you to walk out?
C: People want to win! Like, oh my god, I got back to college the other day and I walked in the door and I locked eyes with this girl that I know, like one of my really good friends, and she locked eyes with me, and I just knew. I had a keep cup full of coffee in my hand and I threw it into a bush -I spent $3.15 on that-
B: OH NO!!
C: -threw it into a bush and sprinted. And by the time I got all the way to uni, I got a message from another friend, and it just said, “Run.”
B & C: [Laughs]
C: So I ran further because her assassin had killed her before she got to the door and then got me, and she’s been winning the game so far because you can only see her when she WANTS you to.
B: Yeah okay.
C: Yeah, and I only managed to escape with my life. Not with my dignity.
B: So you’re down to the final fifteen?
C: Not exciting. I fear for my life.
B: [laughs] How’s college going this week otherwise?
C: College is going really, really good. Food’s been good.
B: [laughs] The food’s been great.
C: That’s pretty much the indicator of how college goes. [Laughs]
B: And you pushed through your assignments? We’re moving almost into exam period. We’ve got finally the “mid-semester” break next week, even though it’s in week 9.
C: Silly, silly, silly.
B: It’s more of a 3/4 semester break, but that’s okay.
B: I know, I get that they want to time it with the public holiday, and that’s the reason why they’ve done it, but still. By like week 7 everyone was like [desperately] “PLEASE!! Give us a break!!”
C: I know, and like, I needed a break to get me back on my bullshit. It has been too long and too far behind to ever come back now. [B: laughs] Like, I’d like to make a formal retraction, because last time I came on this show, I said, [mockingly] “I’m up to date! I’ve got all my ducks in a row!” NUP! [laughs]
B: “I’m all caught up on like three different subjects!”
C: So that ship has left the station and I am NOT on board!
B: [laughs] Well, look, you’ve still got like three weeks of semester? Four weeks left? So you’ll be fine. Just get back on it, just smash through it in the break. Are you going down to Albany in the break?
C: I am. I’m taking an international student down to Albany to show them around, it’s going to be cool.
B: Oh that’ll be fun.
C: We’re going to a cheese factory in Denmark.
B: I was going to say, what does one do down in Albany?
C: Is that a read or??
C: You can do so much down in Albany!
B: How about, for 30 seconds or for a minute, do your best tourist promo in a tourism advertising voice of Albany. Go!
C: Hi. Cohen Augustson here. Do you like local infrastructure? Awesome! Experience it first-hand by driving aimlessly around two roundabouts. Do you like plants? Awesome! There’s heaps too. Do you like clean energy? 70% of Albany has its energy produced by the windfarm. Visit it!! And fear for your life because those blades on the turbines always look like they’re coming for you. Do you fear death? Go to the Gap. You won’t for long! Do you like whales? Go to Whale World- I don’t know! [laughs]
B: [Laughs] Whale world!
C: You know what Whale World-
B: No, I have never heard of it. Is Whale World in Albany?
C: Yes it is. I can’t believe-
B: You’ve just informed me, so like, tell me about Whale World.
C: So. Albany used to have a very vibrant whaling history. Used to hunt the whales. Used to kill the whales. Used to eat the whales, until like 1977. And when they did their Federal or State ban on whaling, or whatever it was, Albany was the last whaling station to close down because everyone who lived here was like [high-pitched, accented voice] “Yeah right! Take my harpoon off me when you take my life off me!” And now, that whaling station is an anti-whaling museum.
B: Oh! Alright, so Whale World. For anyone going down to Albany, there’s your pitch.
C: Hit it up. It’s really nice.
B: Um, alright. Switching gears from college. How’s campus been? And I know we’re a bit late, recording this week, but we were meant to record on Monday, but then life got in the way. The main thing that’s happened in the past two weeks was Guild elections, which is your first stint at experiencing Guild elections on uni campus, I guess. What were your thoughts?
C: The experience for me was quite different from a lot of people. Because my first reaction was “I don’t go to uni anyway, so…”
B: [laughs] “So what does it matter to me?”
C: Everyone kept coming down and they were like, “Oh my god! I got harassed today, like, it was so bad. Ooh, someone looked at me today. Ooh, not allowed…” And then I decided to go and experience it for myself, and you know what?
C: I frickin’ loved it!
C: I loved it.
B: Okay. Outline why you loved it so much then.
C: Walking down. And watching all the people try to make eye contact with you, like we talked about this before, it’s like in Pokemon where they make eye contact with another Pokemon trainer and you have to battle?
B: [laughs] [Mimics the Pokemon battle theme]
C: Yeah, like literally. Their responses to certain things just makes me laugh. Like, you could walk all the way up to someone with a flyer out and say, “I’ve already voted.” And then the crowd would just part like the Red Sea. Like so much power. I actually like the Guild.
B: Well, you’re a politics student, right? So I guess there’s some sort of relevance, almost, to Guild…
C: Yeah, so like actually all of them are actually doing that, and stuff. Some of them were a bit scary.
B: Yeah? Where did you go? Were you at Reid booth or…?
C: Reid booth, but like I enjoyed it. It was cool.
B: What were your main impressions of the main parties in it? Cause we got Star, Launch, Left Action. I don’t know if you had any particular thoughts on what policies- you don’t have to say who you voted for, but-
C: I voted for Star!
B: Just chucking that out there! Um, no but what you thought of their policies… your opinions on it.
C: Well, I’m young and impressionable. Um, I’m not an old man yet.
B: Yeah. You’ll get there [laugh].
C: I’ll probably be like you one day.
B: One day.
C: Yeah [Laughs].
B: Five years here.
C: I don’t know, it’s a bit… Cause I don’t know what’s realistic and what’s unrealistic yet, like they’re talking about getting a ferry, and I can’t tell if that’s realistic or not, because I haven’t been here for very long. And, like Launch was like, “Ooh, let’s get $2 middies” or something like that. And I was like “Hmmm… I dunno…”
B: Dunno about that one. Yeah, I think both sides had a lot of policies which were flat out stupid. Like the $2 middies, not sure if that’s legal or not. And the ferry, I don’t know how legitimate a ferry is gonna be for business school- question marks. But that said, they also had very good, applicable policies which you can kind of take action on, so…
C: And it’s like Conrad Hogg did a very good job as Education Captain President, like I’m going to download some lectures for the bus on the way down to Albany, and that’s stuff I can use.
B: Right? It’s like an actual tangible thing for your experience as a student as opposed to like $2 middies or catching a ferry, like yeah.
C: I don’t know if you watched the interviews that Josh Cahill and Cormac did with the Presidental Candidates. Jade Mawby actually made a really, really good point
B: And she was the Left Action candidate.
C: She made a really, really good point when she was like, “A primary function of the Guild should be to look out for students who don’t have the luxury of certain things that other students do.”
B: Yeah, the privilege of other students.
C: So I thought it was really, really good that Star and Conrad did downloadable lectures for people who didn’t have internet at home, and people who do live in the country and who do have to make long trips and stuff can watch their lectures without having to rely on that.
B: Yeah, like I even use it. I know that my Google Chrome sometimes doesn’t let me watch it in the browser, so sometimes I will have to download them. It’s hysterical [laughs]. I will have to download them and watch them at home. So it just makes my life a little bit easier.
B: I have the privilege that I can come into uni and can park and all that, but still it makes my life a little easier.
C: I thought that Launch did quite a good job as well.
B: And the results came out last night, and it was very close- I think it was only fourteen votes. Far out. That’s a lot. So it was a very close run on both sides.
C: Did you notice the effect of social media on the campaign though?
B: I’ve been in my little Pelican bubble with this whole Guild election, running the interviews and coming from a cynical perspective. So tell me, tell me.
C: You know how UWA has those staple pages that we talked about? So we have like UWA Memes, Reid Library Teens-
B: Confessions, and Yes/No.
C: A few of them were posting like anti-Star, which is their right, they can do what they want. But if you dig a little bit further down, there’s been accusations that the people running those accounts are either Launch candidates or very closely alligned with Launch?
B: I know there were a lot of allegations this week that those particular sites put out, which as far as we know, are unfounded. But, yeah, that’s been a discussion for a while, that the people that run those sites are affiliated and so they don’t really have an unbiased view of things, they try to sway. Which is interesting that you’ve noticed that in your first year.
C: Someone tried to rip at Murdoch, the Guild election. Like what the hell is this place?
B: [Laughs] Nowhere is safe from the control of the media!
C: Maybe it was him. Maybe his little bald head was behind his laptop like, ‘ughh, hate Star!!”
B: And it’s interesting because it’s mainly, again, it’s allegations, we don’t KNOW. But a lot of it, like you said, seem to be anti-Star propaganda. There’s no page which is more anti-Launch, I guess, from what I’ve seen. I don’t know what that says about anything, but interesting you’ve noticed that. With the rise of those kind of meme trio pages in the past couple of years, that has had an effect, and that is something that they are constantly caught out for in Gulid elections because it’s brought up.
C: That makes sense.
B: Just because they have all the power, and they can influence people like that, so…
C: I was surprised by how close a lot of the presidental, like subcommunity presidental positions were. So many of them were so hotly contested, and finished within like a foot of each other.
B: Yep. Some years you can tell that they are very, very far apart, like you can tell that there wasn’t outstanding candidate that everyone kind of backed. But this year, it was much closer, and that’s even being said that the amount of votes were the same- I think it’s usually about 4000 people who vote, which isn’t a lot, but about a fifth of the student body. They were a lot closer this year, particularly the president, and I think the thing that’s perturbed a lot of people is that Launch were actually ahead on the primary vote.
B: So, hmm. Interesting.
C: And that just comes down to how you feel about preferrential voting. I LOVE preferrential voting.
B: Go Politics Student!
C: I’m a huge fan of it. Someone who actually knows what they’re talking about is going to hear me say that though, and be like [condescendingly] “UGh. An idiot.”
B: But it’s interesting as well, because I know last year, I’m pretty sure last year we had a full sweep of Star candidates in all the big positions. Whereas we got one Launch candidate in the mix this year, so, that means we don’t have a full majority.
C: Exactly, and I was talking to someone today, who I said, “How did you feel about the results of the Guild election?” and he’s like a die-hard Launch fan, and he was like, “I was very, very happy.” And I was like, [surprised] “Really?” and he was like, “Yeah, none of them got like a primary majority.” and I was like, “But… but they all still won the position.”
B: Yeah, I know, it’s this one thing that happens on campus where it just brings people together. I dunno.
C: That being said, you do have to be very, very brave to be a Guild candidate.
B: Oh, absolutely! You have to dedicate so much time and be very, very brave and bold in what you do. Because you’re gonna get slaughtered either by the other side, or by people who are in different, you know. And to put yourself on the line like that for majorly two weeks, but also if you get the position, you know, another ten months after that! It’s a lot. So, full props to them.
C: Literally every Star candidate, every Global candidate, every Launch candidate, every Left Action candidate deserves so much credit for walking through that, like, field of fire.
B: Yeah! [laughs] And that ranges all the way from like, you know, honorary guild counsellors. People who are just running for a seat on the council. To people who have to bear a lot more of the load, who are also being uni students at the same time, and having full-load, part-load of courses. It’s a lot.
C: Exaclty. So props to all of them.
B: Yeah. No, interesting, interesting to get your hot takes on elections.
C: Hot takes.
B: What about the rest of campus life this fortnight? Besides elections?
C: There was the biggest event on college of the year- happened just last week? Or the week before?
B: And what was that?
C: Battle of the Bands.
B: [Remembering] OH! Yes! How did it go? Tell me how it went! I saw it being set up in the Ref. [C: Breathes in] Okay, that’s a death stare. What happened?
C: [Exhales slowly]
B: [Laughs] Vent.
C: I am, A) Bitter. B) Salty. C) Angry. [Laughs]
B: Okay. Alright.
C: Alright, I’m just joking. All of the bands were really, really good. But um, so. I’ll just tell you like the running order. So in fifth place was Trin. We came fourth.
B: [Sympathetic] Ohh.
C: [Angry grunt] Um, third place was Tommy. And then Uni Hall came second, and then St Georges’s won it for the third year in a row.
B: Wow, okay.
C: Because they were SO good!
B: So who did St. George’s put out? What was their band?
C: So St George’s has like a band that plays for their college- like it’s their college band.
B: Oh really?
C: I’m pretty sure, yeah.
B: So they didn’t just put it together for the event. They have their own little, like-
C: Yeah, they have like, a lot of them play together already. And they’re very good, like, they all swap instruments during their sets because they’re all so musically talented.
B: Oh! What!
C: Some of them study music at UWA.
B: So that would give them an advantage, obviously.
C: So they had a drummer and keyboarder who was the same person. Keyboarder’s not a word. [laughs] They had a singer who played the saxophone at one point. A singer who also played the violin at one point, and then another singer. They had a guitar player who also played the drums, and they had a keyboard player who also played the guitar. And then a bass player. And they were SO good.
B: What did they perform?
C: Their song choice was really good as well. So they started off with Somebody To Love by Queen. Ambitious- but it was done very well. And they did Call Me Maybe by Carly Rae Jepsen.
B: Good choice! I love me some Carly Rae.
C: Their third song was AMAZING, and I’m so angry that we didn’t think to do it. [Sigh] They did Man! I Feel Like A Woman by Shania Twain.
B: [Clapping] YES! Yes! Okay. Amazing.
C: And they had the male singer do all the speaking parts.
B: [Laughs] Yes!
C: [Mimicking voice] “Let’s go, girls.”
B: [Mimics the beat of the song]
C: So like, while I’m bitter, I’m bitter because of us.
B: Okay, so what did you perform? What was your set?
C: We started off with American Idiot.
B: Okay, cause you were the singer, weren’t you? You were singing?
C: Yep. T’was I. And then second of all, we had Feel It Still, by Portugal. The Man. And then we did Untouched by The Veronicas.
B: Good song! Did you have a violinist during the [sings violin bit].
C: We did, but we didn’t have enough people in the band to sustain that because she was also playing the guitar. We had the saxophone and the piano do that instead though. And then we did Misery Business by Paramore.
B: Oh! Yes!! Yes! Who had the… did you sing that?
C: I did.
B: [impressed] Wow! Hayley Williams has a series of vocals on that, so, I’m sure you did it justice…?
C: [Laughs] You’re so shady.
B: [Laughs] Yep. Okay.
C: And then last we did Everybody Talks by Neon Trees.
B: Good song!
C: Except we brought something that nobody else had.
C: We had stage gags.
B: What do you mean you had stage gags?? What is stage gags??
C: I just wanna say before I get there that the Pelican review of this was hilarious because she’s literally like, “Questionable wardrobe choices” and then she’s like “They performed Untouched and most of the notes remained untouched.” So we had stage gags, which are basically when you just do something on stage to shock everyone. So halfway through American Idiot we had a saxophone solo, everything kind of went quiet and I put my leg up on a speaker, and I was wearing tear-away pants and I just ripped them off.
C: Threw em into the crowd, and I was wearing like, Looney Tunes boxers underneath.
C: And then we did the second song, and we just did it normal. And then in the third song, cause we were wearing a cowboy hat, and I ripped it off and it had a St. Cath’s flag underneath. And then I ditched that into the crowd, so I was just standing there in these ridiculous gold metallic sneakers, an actual suit vest, a long-sleeve shirt and like, these boxers. And then in the next song, I put both my feet up on a little elevated path and reached down my shoes and they were light up heeleys so I lit the soles of them up, but nobody saw because everyone was so drunk. And then in the last song, I ripped my shirt open and I had a St. Cath’s shirt on underneath.
B: Oh! My God! So you just slowly undressed yourself the entire time?
C: Literally. And I ripped them all off and I was just wearing my St. Cath’s shirt, running around the stage like an idiot. And um, yeah.
B: What a win.
C: What a win.
B: Winner in your heart. Just not on the scoreboard.
C: It was alright. The other bands were so good. But Tommy More was really really good because-
B: Sorry, did you just say something nice about Tommy More? I thought we didn’t like Tommy More.
C: I’m not retracting my statement. Tommy More was really good though, because they like, play in a band already.
B: What is with these college bands?
C: I don’t know, but we don’t!
B: I feel like that is an unfair advantage.
C: We all just kind of climbed out of the woodwork like, “Hi, I’m Cohen. These are the songs we’ve chosen. Hello, alright, cool, let’s do it.” Um, Trinity was really, really good. I don’t know why they came last, to be honest.
B: Who was voting?
C: It was… like the president of some music society. Someone else and someone else. And I think an RSD president might have voted as well… I’m not sure. I’ve got no idea. And it was put on by the- RSD did a fantastic job. It was literally an amazing night, it was so good. Everyone got totalled afterwards, like…
B: Were you totalled on stage? You couldn’t have been, right?
C: No. Nope.
B: Completely sober?
C: Yeah. Because I kept forgetting the lyrics to the songs. We did what we called ‘a wet-run’ the night before, which is when you get totalled and then do it, like practice the songs from front to back.
B: That’s smart.
C: And it did not go as successful as I thought it would. [Laughs]
B: A wet-run. [Laughs]
C: How gross does that sound, by the way?
B: That does sound gross.
C: Sounds disgusting. Should be illegal.
B: [closer to the mic] Moist run?
C: I did not need your ASMR comment.
B: [whispering into the mic] Wet-run. [laughs]
C: I’m leaving the podcast! I’m out! I’m sorry, I can’t do this.
B: I was just about to say that, that just about does it for us this week. Cohen, sign-off. Think of one. Listeners, thank you for listening to us ramble for another week.
C: Please come back next week. I promise we don’t do ASMR again.
B: Please come back and like and subscribe for more [closer to the mic] ASMR content. [Laughs, normal voice] I haven’t checked the stats, but our Eastern-European listeners -don’t know where they are, don’t know where they’ve gone. Hopefully they’ll come back. [Higher pitch] Come back! Come back to us! [Normal voice] What are you looking at me like that for?
C: Cause I can’t forgive you for what you’ve done today.
B: What are you-?? [Laughs] Um, thank you as always everyone for listening, um, as always if you want to send anything in to us, send it to firstname.lastname@example.org. If you wanna check out some of Pelican’s coverage of the Guild elections, that’s all up on our website. We’ve got interviews, we’ve got articles, it’s a bit out of date now, but it’s still good content. Um, if you wanna follow Cohen on Instagram, @cohenauguston. Hit him up. Do you have a sign-off? Okay, what are we doing? Cause I think last week was a little… we need to rake it back in this week, rake it back in.
C: I’m Cohen…
B: And I’m Bridget.
C: [whispering into the mic] Thanks for listening to Better Late Than Fresher.
B: [laughing and whispering] Bye guys!
C: [poppy, light music plays] Yuck! I hated that. Disgusting.