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dp: Ear buzz - Students cruising for a bruising.

Byline: ADAM WALTON

ILIVE in a humble, terraced house a short walk away from Chester city centre. Apart from the high proportion of work-dodging, car-owning students, it's a good area. When you can get a parking space, that is. All these penniless students living eight to a house, trying to park four Land Cruisers on the street outside, so that I have to park half-a-mile away, and struggle down the road laden with shopping bags and a baby in torrential sleet ..until the weekend when they all go home to get mummy to do their washing.

Don't they teach social responsibility in any of these vaunted halls of academia? They certainly didn't when I was doing exactly the same in Liverpool - I didn't have a Land Cruiser, though ..just a Student Rail Card. Punk rock.

If you smell a hypocrite, it's because I am one. Anyway, the proverbial straw that literally broke my back happened last week. I DJ every Friday night/Saturday morning in Telford's Warehouse, Chester. Typically, I have to cart three CD players and two plastic boxes with approximately five hundred CDs in them in and out of the house. At three `o' clock last Saturday morning, in the kind of rain that would have trout reaching for an umbrella, I tried to pull up outside my house to stow my valuable gear inside. We have one solitary car, and we own our house. The rent-paying students on either side, wet-nosed to the area, have six cars between them. They were all parked, badly, in a line up the street. To say I cussed would be an understatement. Seafaring navvies educated at John Prescott's charm school would have blushed crimson. I considered going to each of the houses and waking the thoughtless oiks up ....until I remembered they were all PE students who could batter me with one hand, while the other one dressed up as a tellytubby and did a threelegged pub crawl up Bridge Street, for charity.

Instead, I swallowed hard, parked 10 doors up, and stumbled and cursed through three journeys back and forth, soaking my CDs, and waking the baby up. I was harbouring fantasies of becoming prime minister and banning student loans, as well as grants. ``Not only should all of these buggers pay for their education, they should pay me as well!'' I thought to myself - perhaps a little harshly.

Anyway, I finally got into bed, shivering and suffering mild pneumonia, only to be woken an hour later when a subsidised bar full of these `comedians' filed past the house outside doing the conga.Ha. Ha. Ha. I related this story to a student friend the following night. He was sympathetic, so I let him out of my Vulcan Death Grip. ``Why don't you stick all your records on your computer, and then just make compilations of what you need each weekend? That way you'd only be walking round with a handful of records .....you wouldn't get any scratched, or nicked, and you could stick them all up in the loft so that your wife isn't moaning about you leaving boxes of CDs all around the house.'' Smart ass. How did he know about the wife???? So, one CD writer, a copy of Audiograbber and a new hard drive later, and I'm midway through transferring all of my albums onto my computer (as MP3s, 192Kbps bitrate, if you must know!) To think that a 120Gb hard drive can store about 2,000 albums, at CD quality, in a space not much bigger than a cigarette packet. Astonishing. It's almost a revolutionary concept. The baby can have a nursery, now, instead of sleeping on my Frank Zappa collection. And, all because of a student. Bring back the grant, I say. Ban them from driving anything larger than Fiat Unos, though.
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Title Annotation:Features
Publication:Daily Post (Liverpool, England)
Date:Nov 15, 2002
Words:638
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