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The Adventures of Montague ‘Fresh’ DeLarge: Part the 2nd – The Essay

'I started going to my history lectures recently, and then my seminars. I'm disappointed by the lack of silver service and that there's no table wine, but I suppose this is uni life.'

Hello again, dear readers. I hope this finds you protected from the sudden cold, wrapped in your jumpers and cloaks, sipping from strong, steaming beverages and gazing out the window reminiscing about that lovely from the night before. Perhaps you had a lie in today and have only just awoken proper. You stretched, thought about your plans and appointments, and then had a long shower. But what of your dear Monty? Well, my darlings, like a cuckoo thrown into a bird’s nest full of bloodthirsty baby raptors on a cocaine binge, Monty’s had somewhat the ordeal, and I will relate to you this cautionary tale.

I started going to my history lectures recently, and then my seminars. I’m disappointed by the lack of silver service and that there’s no table wine, but I suppose this is uni life. The problem is, readers, I was set an essay. I shrugged off the responsibility, knowing I had all the time in the world to craft my genius that would one day be the ruling gospel of man. Monty had better things to do, like drawing pictures of Alan Rickman flying a dinosaur around space, and getting drunk, naked and wander around Founder’s in a bow tie taking things from the pantry.

Fast forward to the night before my deadline. The question: something about colonialism; the ambition: optimistic, slight chance of over-zealous sentences and poor referencing, but all signs indicating a first, and possibly a knighthood. I began to write away, furiously, like a man possessed. This was going to be fine. The first problem was my laptop was low on science juice, and I’d lost my charger the night before, beating away a drug dealer who thought I was his friend, ‘Baz’. Seven glasses of rioja and three paragraphs in, my laptop swoons and dies. I am forced, my friends, to go the library.

Sure, it’ll be an all-nighter now, but that’s no problem for your friend Monty- his mother was in labour for almost two days because he’s a trooper, and there was no way he was being kicked out of the womb-club without making a real fuss. There were no free computers, however, but there was one left unattended, and as this would only take half an hour – because this boy knows his geese from his grouse- I requisitioned it and began to continue my essay.

Forty minutes later an absolute goddess appeared over my shoulder and asked me what I thought I was doing on her computer.

“Darling,” I replied, “I’m writing my essay. Can you get me some wine from Crosslands? After I’m done we can head up to the archives and I’ll show your Jane Holloway my philanthropy.”

And then, my loves, she grabbed me by the ears and head-butted me. I’ve been known to tumble with the best of them, readers, but I’ve never been rogered like that. I kicked out with my foot, and, due to physics, kicked her in the face. She fell like a sack of Oh-God-Why. And then came the fury. She lunged above me and began raining down the pain- all the pain, all the pain that’s ever happened, was now being directed by her, into my face. I tried to fight back, and before you say ‘Monty, that’s not like you. Where’s your chivalry?’ I’m going to say right now I thought I was about to die. I’ve seen nature documentaries where the lioness hunts the gazelle, then somehow uses its hide and bones to fashion a rudimentary space station and holds the world to ransom with a laser beam, proving just how resourceful lionesses can be. This woman was that lioness.

I woke up three hours later, outside, in the rain. At one point I must have chundered. I know this because there was chunder in a halo around my head and up my nose. My darlings, I was forced to stagger home to my dear room, bloody and strangely aroused, and I began to write my essay on the back of a menu I’d stolen from a restaurant in London, because I had no paper. I’d forgotten the essay title, so wrote my name instead so at least they’d know who it was by. All in all I managed to write eight hundred words on that menu before I ran out of space and had to use my membership cards for the final two hundred. I’m a member of many places.

I will not tell you the grade and discussion I had with my seminar leader in the weeks following, but it was not the first I had originally hoped for. But Monty never dies, and I’ll be buggered if an academic thinks he can tell me I’m not meeting the basic standard.

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