I’m feeling pretty harried this week, because I’m teaching using a new curriculum, which requires all-new lecture slides and notes and homework assignments. I’m also going away this weekend, to Williamstown for the celebration marking the 50th anniversary of the founding of my college rugby club.
As a result, I’ve been losing more mental processor cycles than usual to thinking about my own college days, and remembering the lyrics to the dozens and dozens of songs I used to know. So, because it’s on my mind anyway, and because the mixing of college sports and alcohol would really cheese off the humorless scolds, here’s an audience poll question to fill some blog space while I frantically try to get two lectures ahead, because I don’t anticipate being in any shape to prep a class on Sunday night:
What’s your favorite drinking song?
This doesn’t have to be a traditional-type drinking song, along the lines of “Wild Rover” or that sort of thing– if you can’t have three beers without wanting to hear and sing along with “Sweet Home Alabama,” that works, too. Whatever you want to hear when you’re out boozing it up.
My answer actually has a tiny bit of science content:
As I said, I know a ton of rugby/ drinking songs, most of them more obscene than I’m willing to post here. I still find myself humming a few of them from time to time, often while in the lab.
My favorite single verse is probably this one (which is actually a double verse, but the chorus that would come after the second stanza was always dropped):
In the process of civilization
From anthropoid ape down to man
It’s been generally held that the Navy
Has buggered whatever it can.
But, the recent scientific researches
Of Darwin and Huxley and Hall
Have conclusively shown that the hedgehog
Has never been buggered at all.
So, we therefore feel our conclusion
Is incontrovertibly shown
That comparative safety on shipboard
Is held by the hedgehog alone
But why don’t they do it at amherst,
Like they do it at Harvard and Yale,
And also at Oxford and Cambridge
By shaving ths apines off his tail?
(The chorus is the usual collection of nonsense– “rump-titty-titty-ay!” etc. The amherst reference (Williams’s big rival) is obviously a local addition to some older source.)
This almost certainly isn’t the hedgehog song so often referenced in Terry Pratchett’s Discworld books, but I’ve always associated this verse with that. There are a couple dozen other verses for this, that I don’t have the time to type out this morning, but will be stuck in my head all day.