Night Out: Valentine’s at Park End

Daanial Issaq Chaudhry finds Park End an adequate substitute for a Valentine's day date

Donning my coolest t-shirt, downing the cheapest drink, and defaulting to ridiculous dance moves, I make my way down to Park End, or possibly ATIK – which it is, I’ll never know. Either way, the club is a staple in any Oxford experience, and an embarrassing picture with the Fuzzy Duck is a requirement to pass your degree. Drunk and single as the day of love approached, I thought: ‘what better night to spend in Park End than Valentine’s Day?’

Having frequented Park End Wednesdays more often than my Thursday morning lectures, and well aware of the distance to my beloved cheese floor, I was wise enough to bring a drink with me for the walk – something that, in my opinion, is a must. And, might I add, sharing a drink with the stranger next to you in the queue is the ultimate way to network and meet new people… who knows, you might end up going home with one of them.

Once inside, the unending queue for the cloakroom is inevitable, and you bide your time (im)patiently whilst bopping along to the music from the cheese floor. Just as inevitable as the queue for the cloakroom, however, is the stream of familiar faces that wade past you into the club – some friendly, some not, and some that you would rather forget. You’re forced to do some calculations in your head, to work out whether the probability of seeing one of those familiar faces again is worth it for the R&B floor. Wisely, I decided against it, and made my way to the main floor.

The highlight of the night, I might add, was trying to get a photo with the Fuzzy Duck. The trick to this is grabbing all your friends, and those strangers you’ve just met, and making sure they feature in your photos too. What you want to do is make sure those friends are vaguely attractive, to show you have a good taste in friends, but not too attractive, so that whoever is stalking your Instagram doesn’t get lured in by them instead. This, combined with the appearance of an overweight yellow duck in your feed, is destined to guarantee future interest beyond the sweaty confines of Park End.

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From personal experience, I can’t say you’re destined to find true love in a nightclub in Oxford, least of all on Valentine’s Day. But what I can say is that Park End is there for you when you need it, and in lieu of a lover it can provide you with the guarantee of a good night out…one that you won’t regret too much in the morning