It’s Blues Varsity weekend! The captains have announced their squads and both teams have produced promotional videos which you can enjoy below. We hope you can join us at Southgate HC on Sunday to cheer on the boys and girls, but if not both games will be live-streamed by Galvanised Hockey. More information can be found at the Varsity Hockey Match website.
But before all that there are some important games to be played in the East Leagues tomorrow. At home we have a series of derby encounters: the Squandies have a six pointer versus Cambridge City Vets as they look to secure their position in Division 3N’s top four (10:30, P1); the Wandies have a must-win six pointer versus a Cambridge City 3 side just above them in Division 1 (12:00, P1); and the Nomads have a chance to put some distance between themselves and the drop zone in Division 1N (13:30, P3). On the road, travel to mid-table Spalding needing three points to stay in the Division 3NW’s top four, the Men’s Blues have a season-defining must-win Charlie-Banister-approved six pointer at Ipswich as they look to return to the promotion spots in Premier A; and the Women’s Blues will look to keep the pressure on Dereham at the top of Division 1N with a win away at struggling !-ES.
Ahead of this Sunday’s Varsity Matches, Blues captains Hattie Bevan and Sean Gilmore have announced their squads that will take on Oxford at Southgate HC. Tickets can be purchased on the door or online via the Varsity Hockey Match website.
With the Best Day of the Year almost upon us, senior members of the club are aware that it can be a bewildering time for freshpeople. Well have no fear! In this preview we will explain some of the technical terms you have probably heard in recent days but may not understand.
BDOTY (n., /bɛst deɪ ɒv ðə jɪə/)
2s3s4s: the best day of the year.
Nomad: Have you enjoyed BDOTY 2014?
Becky Wilson: This is not just the best day of the year, but the best day of my life.
Five from five (n., /fʌɪv frɒm fʌɪv/)
When CUHC wins every game at 2s3s4s. Traditionally followed by a rendition of Take That’s “Greatest Day” in the Wilberforce Road car park and obnoxious night-long flag waving.
CUHC member: Diesel, what do you think of our five from five today?
Diesel: ‘Today this could be…’
Don’t take me home…
please don’t take me home…
Crewdate (n., v., /kruːdeɪt/)
Silly Oxford word for swap.
Silly Oxford person: Excuse me but do you know where the crewdate is happening tonight?
Sensible Cambridge person: I have no idea what you mean but I’ll be going to Cindies for a massive swap.
Can (n., /kən/)
(1) Metal beverage container.
Person 1: Shall we get a keg for 2s3s4s this year?
Person 2: Nah, I’m just going to stick to cans.
(2) A device used to consume large quantities of beer really fast. Usually made from a length of tubing and a watering can.
Crowd: Can! Can! Can! Can!
Vuv (n., /vuːv/)
Short for vuvuzela. Device used for making antisocial noises during BDOTY. Can also be substituted for a can (see can above).
Everyone: From the vuv, from the vuv, from the vuv!
Hatty: Go away I already did a can!
Shandy (n., /ˈʃandi/)
Made by mixing a tiny amount of beer with a large amount of lemonade, a shandy is the favoured beverage of members of Oxford University. Avoid if you like fun.
Oxford player: Would you like to share this shandy with me?
Cambridge player: No thanks, I like fun. Also stop booze dodging.
Jackson o’clock (n., /’dʒaksʌnəˈklɒk/)
Point in the day when it all gets a bit much. Can be surprisingly early for some.
TJ (at 2:30pm): I think it’s home time for me chaps.
Everyone: Must be Jackson o’clock.
Pymo: Right chaps, Jackson o’clock.
Everyone: OK Pymo see you later.
Randolph Hotel Staff: Excuse me sir do you have a room here?
Randolph Hotel Staff: Very good sir.
Campkin: Uhhh, uhhh, Jackson o’clock?, um.
Everyone: But Campo the coach doesn’t leave for another three hours.
Campkin: Uhh, um, yeah?, uhhhh, going to have a, uh, nap at my friend from school’s house, uhh, see you at the, um, coach.
Kieran (n., /’kiːn/)
When someone is trying to coach a team at 2s3s4s but instead just brags about their own varsity prowess.
Kieran: Whenever I play in Varsity I play with lots of confidence and I always have the best game of my season and am normally man on the mach.
Wandies: He just did a Kieran didn’t he.
Beer staff (n., /bɪə stɑːf/)
Using cans, one drinks a beer and once it’s finished one adds a fresh brew on top of the empty can and just keeps going until one has the biggest “staff” in town.
Pete: Look at my staff lads! That’s 30 units today!
Everyone: Shut up Pete, we all saw you taking cans out the bin.
How good is Pete…
at taking cans out the bin?
SeX5 (n. /’sɛksfʌɪv/)
Mode of transport used on Monday morning to return home from an away 2s3s4s after one has, for any reason, missed the coach.
Anonymous Maverick: But won’t you miss the coach?
Dutch Squanderer: Don’t worry, I can catch the SeX5.
Men’s Blues goalkeeper: Shall we take the SeX5 or wait for the coach?
Nomads captain: Nah, let’s get a taxi. The club will pay.
The Blunderers squad to take on OUHC’s Sporadics at 9:30am on February 17th has been selected. The Blundies are the only team in the club (in Cambridge?) with a 100% Varsity record. In fact, they have never lost a game of any sort. Let’s hope they can continue their remarkable record at Wiberforce Road next weekend.
With just over a week to go until the Best Day of the Year the squads have been selected and excitement is building. The first (and most important?) battle is already underway on social media, and thanks painstaking compilation and analysis by Owain Houghton I can bring you the results of 2019’s Profile Picture Reacts Contest (PPRC2019). All numbers in the following are corrects as of this afternoon.
Team by team
At first glance the Nomads are on top yet again, with a mean reacts per player breaking the double century. But of course the raw numbers only tell half the story. Once numbers of friends are taken into account, the Squanderers take home the prize, drawing reacts from nearly a quarter of their respective friendships (an improvement on last year’s totals by over 1.5 times). Perhaps in the end the Nomads have suffered from the cynical practice of requesting the online friendship of as many CUHC members as possible in the lead up to PPRC2019. At the other end of the table, the Wanderers have had a bad year. They are way behind the other teams on raw reacts, have received just 3/4s the number of reacts per friend as the triumphant Squandies, and are barely up on their 2018 result. Oh dear oh dear.
An interesting by-product of this analysis is that the Squandies have, by some distance, the fewest friends.
Mean no. friends
Mean % of friends who reacted
2018 mean reacts
% yearly change
175 ± 50
+ 58 %
194 ± 87
+ 35 %
199 ± 47
+ 13 %
152 ± 91
+ 3 %
* arithmetic mean ± 1σ.
The react-by-react breakdown for the PPRC2019 Champions, the Squanderers, is shown in the box-and-whisker diagram below.
Congratulations to the Bedouin’s Anna Calder whose total of 346 reacts was the highest across the four teams. But of course the purists among us are only interested in reacts normalised by number of friends. In this category the Nomads’ Lizzie Jack was victorious, with her 135 reacts reflecting a huge 48.7% of her total friend base. Lizzie was pipped to the “Most loved” prize by the Beds’ Lydia Michaelides, who was loved by 18.4% of her friends (Lydia came second in the overall contest). The take home message appears to be that, in the PPRC, one is rewarded for placing tight constraints on one’s social media contacts. Indeed, it has not gone unnoticed that certain contestants have been “friend culling” during the course of PPRC2019 (we stress that none of the contestants near the top of PPRC2019 have been caught engaging in such an enterprise). In other news the Squanderers’ Guy Holden has the angriest friends. PPRC2019’s big losers were both Wanderers: Alex Harper, with 80 reacts, was the only contestant not to break the hundy and David Gibson, with 8.8%, had the lowest proportion of reacting friends.
Individual breakdowns for the Squanderers are shown graphically below (note that Guy Holden’s friends are not only very angry about his selection but also sad).
The Big Picture
The PPRC nerds are only just beginning to digest the vast quantity of data available. Some convincing relationships have already been identified but in the interest of avoiding cum hoc ergo propter hoc reasoning we will not be commenting on causal mechanisms at the stage.
Thanks again to Owain Houghton for putting all this together.
Don’t forget there is still league hockey to be played! Lots of important matches on tomorrow after a complete freeze out last week. At home, the Bedouin are on first vs. CoP (10:30), after which the Men’s Blues face Harleston Magpies in a top four six pointer at the same time as the Women’s Blues take on Wisbech Town (13:30). On the road, the Nomads can gain ground on a Sudbury side just three points above them, there’s also a six pointer for the Wanderers at the Olympic Park vs. Crostyx, and the Squanderers will look to put a few past mid-table St Ives.
Wisbech Town 1
Harleston Magpies 1
City of Peterborough 3
St Ives 2
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