Last September the New York Times published Last Call for College Bars discussing how technology has affected university bars and how campus bar owners have to adapt to get customers – mainly “the ladies”, because what’s a bar without the ladies, right? Other highlights of the article include viewpoints from bar owners and students (with some student comments being as dizzying as that one last drink. Another thought, “You could have this really amazing night, but if you didn’t get a picture, it’s like it didn’t happen”…I mean, if a tree falls in a forest, does it make a sound?)
But the article’s insight comes from its portrayal of what “going out” means in this day and age. This age where social media, instant communication and the race to the bottom (not just the bottom of the glass, but also the bottom of the price range) construct the rules of the game. It wasn’t too long ago that university bars were a meeting ground after class, for people to discuss evening plans while nursing a beer. Nowadays, thanks to the miraculous advent of the cell phone, plans can easily be made from the comfort of one’s own home.
This got me thinking about our very own Queen’s Pub. How often do I trek into the JDUC, student card in one hand, ID in the other, to sit down with a drink, some grub and some good ol’ fashioned face-to-face chatter? Not often enough I tell you! Now, I’ll be honest, the first time I went to QP I got a little freaked out by the polarity between the shiny hard tile of the Upper Ceilidh and the woodsy interior of QP… and I could also do without the smell of grease that clings to all clothing. Regardless, the NYT’s article convinced me to put such disgruntlement aside – Carpe Diem, fellow Queen’s students! – seize the day and go to QP, and while you’re at it, go to Alfies too! The loss of university bars across the continent brings forth the question of what our generation values; with the closure of campus pubs, what exactly is it that we are letting slip through our fingers? And after all, you only have a few precious years to do university and then the opportunity is forever lost in the abyss of the real world.
Veronica Saroli, Fashion Editor
Image: Veronica Saroli