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how today young people have changed the rules of having fun
09-07-2020, 02:01 AM,
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how today young people have changed the rules of having fun
cigspriced Offline Member View worlds
Night one of Freshers' Week 2017 at King's College London and I'm waiting at a student union bar for the welcome party to kick off. The room is adorned with balloons, while screens flash up offers of cheap drink deals Newport Cigarettes. I could be back at my own freshers' week in 2001 Marlboro Cigarettes, except that a blackboard by the bar is advertising celeriac and apple soup, an unlikely student choice back then.

This week, thousands will descend on universities for the first batch of freshers' weeks. Traditionally, this has been a time to cut loose from the shackles of school and the family home and assert one's independence by mostly getting wasted.

We've given them a sneery nickname, these delicate young folk with their "safe spaces" and hypersensitivity to views contradicting their own; these perplexing clean-eaters who'd favour a spinning class over a rave: we call them "snowflakes". And each week brings us fresh tales of their softness.

This week we learned many freshers are being furnished with infantilising safety wristbands bearing their address and emergency contact details Buy Cigarettes Online. Cue a collective eye-roll from the rest of us. Last week came news that Cambridge University was appointing a sexual assault and harassment adviser to "bolster the advice and support available to a student".

Some developments, such as sexual consent workshops, which were made compulsory for freshers at Oxford University last year, may appear positive, but they've also been seized on as evidence we have wrapped young adults in cotton wool, leaving them ill-prepared to face the real world.

Kelly Norman, a 22-year-old English Language and Linguistics finalist from Swindon, is working behind the bar at the King's freshers' party. She says it's not uncommon to have someone in your friendship group at university who doesn't drink much Marlboro Red Cigarettes. "Sometimes it's for religious reasons and sometimes they're just not into the drinking culture. Some people go to clubs and just have soft drinks. They still enjoy it," she says.

"People exercise more and are more into being healthy," she says. "It's a bit sad. There's so much emphasis on the idea that we need to get jobs so people probably think of studying as a bigger thing than it used to be."

What about drugs? Did anyone at her school take any? "Not really. People didn't find them that interesting," she shrugs.

Tom, 18, from Chelmsford, Essex, who has come to King's to study dentistry, says: "We don't [go drinking] as much, but when we do, we do go for it."

So when term starts, how often does he expect to get drunk? "Probably once every two or three weeks."

To me this sounds abstemious. As a teenager in the 1990s, everyone I knew was binge-drinking weekly by 14 Cigarettes Online. Friday nights, the local park was dotted with inebriated kids, and almost everyone by this age had drunk themselves sick; to do so was a badge of honour. Most of us were "social smokers" by 15, and weed was not hard to come by either. By 16, those of us who looked old enough had started clubbing.

That was before the 2007 smoking ban; before the raising of the legal purchase age for cigarettes to 18 and the hike in their price; before the prospect of sky-high tuition fees checked our spending; before the financial crisis of 2007-08 killed the party. And - crucially - before social media. We didn't have to worry our antics would be immortalised online, haunting us well into our professional lives. Today, this threat hangs over every young drinker.

"If you've had a night out and got really drunk and there are photos to prove it, it's a maturing experience," reflects Tom Platts, 18, a Classicist from Wakefield, West Yorkshire.

Social media, moreover, removes us from the moment, casting us as observers and documenters of our own lives Cigarette Tobacco For Sale.

Research by Heineken last year found 75 per cent of millennials said they limited their alcohol consumption on most of their nights out; self-awareness and staying in control were found to be the motivating factors.

Permanently watching a curated version of yourself refracted back at you through social media's distorting prism could indeed be answerable for a change in behaviour. Living life with reckless abandon is hardly compatible with the new, calculated style of life-as-performance.

But as I walk past the gender-neutral toilets at the King's student union, I'm reminded how non-drinkers were once regarded with suspicion on campus and were definitely not cool. Now, it seems, truly anything goes.
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