When I first watched Geordie Shore I decided it represented the worst of human culture, the last excesses of Rome before it was burned by the barbarians, and this (combined with the fact that I don’t have sky at home) meant that I swore off Geordie Shore and MTV for life. Having now become both more familiar with corners of the internet, of which MTV aren’t particularly big fans and living the intern dream, I’ve turned to Geordie Shore: Cancun Chaos as a source of escapism. And you know what? I may have been too quick to condemn. In fact, I think there’s a lot we could learn from them.
1. Drink Responsibly
If there’s one thing that LawSoc/balls/any open bar event has taught me, it’s that sometimes we need a lesson in restraint. Just because the alcohol is behind the bar doesn’t mean that it has to be drunk, although a feeling of wanting to ‘get your money’s worth’ (even if it was free) means that it normally is. In Geordie Shore, however, the drinks on the table don’t disappear as they’re put down. Gary, on the other hand, can happily dance next to a bottle of vodka for the entire night without feeling the need to down it. Admittedly it’s because he’s too busy shining his laser pen at girls in a manner that makes him look a little bit like a bouncer looking for drugs, but it’s obviously a tactic that’s working for him. In fact, maybe I’m not so much advocating reduced drinking but rather the use of laser pens to act as a, albeit slightly creepy, distraction.
2. There’s no substitute for good game.
If there’s one thing you can’t deny when watching the program, it’s that these Geordies have a lot of luck with the opposite sex. Whether you consider it luck when you see which particular specimens of the opposite sex they’ve gone for is another matter, but they seem to be enjoying it anyway. Not for them the forced intimacy of a crew date: eating curry with 15 others on a table that seats eight while subtly trying to encourage your friends to shout your most embarrassing/flattering/’laddish’ sconces. In the last episode Rebecca had been ditched by her girls, who’d all settled into relationships (or onto the toilet in Charlotte’s case), but there was no stopping her and she went off to meet a man at a foam party while ‘feeling like a soapy goddess’. Equally Gary, ever the charmer, goes for the line ‘three way kiss’, which I think is a technique that perhaps wouldn’t work as well in Camera, but then there’s only one way to find out.
3. Reject authority
One of the main sources of tension in Geordie Shore comes from Cancun Chris, a man who has no function in life other than to set arbitrary rules that will obviously be broken and tasks that involve random members of the group either doing nothing or travelling in order to do nothing. Nothing exemplifies this than his leaving of a special bottle of tequilia in the middle of the house he was letting them rent while telling them not to touch it, in a manner similar to the set up of the Garden of Eden and the Tree of Knowledge. When Gary, our band’s proverbial Eve, took the tequilia he was sent to get some more on a trip that seemed to rival the Fellowship of the Ring’s for length/discomfort. However the Geordies stand up to him, refusing to listen to his demands to ‘stay in the house’ and fleeing on the back of motorbikes when it all gets too much. Think of this example when next set a piece of work by a tutor who knows it’s completely irrelevant and you know will never mark it but just wants to make sure you’re productive during the vacation, or ‘extended study time’ as they seem to know it.
4. Never give up on love
Charlotte and Gary are rapidly becoming the “real life” Ross and Rachel, except without any semblance of adult responsibilities and with added threesomes and one night stands. Perhaps a more exciting Ross and Rachel when you put it like that. The little glances they give each other, the fact that Gary pies Charlotte and then Charlotte pies Gary and who can forget their trip to buy more Tequilia and the game of ‘gearstick’ that they played on the way home. It truly is the stuff of modern romance; you can really feel for Gary when he says how hard it’s going to be not to shag her and for Charlotte when she explains just how hard she’s tried to get over him and how much she still wants that cock. As Madeline Sava, a third year archaeology and anthropology student puts it, “It really does teach you that, while the path of true love may twist and turn, it is worth fighting for”. So what if he pies you and goes for the girl on the blues hockey team on a crew date, or she falls for that third year’s charms? Just pick yourself up and go for a grind on the RnB floor of Park End or a grope on the back of a punt, it’s always worth a go, this might just be the time they fall for it.
5. Make the most of what you’ve got/exercise
Regardless of what you think of the Geordie Shore gang, their morals and general outlook on life, you can’t say that they haven’t nailed it. They’re basically doing what they (and don’t lie, a lot of us as well) would do in an ideal world in a house paid for MTV and clubs that give them drinks (they don’t even have to sell tickets for them!). I’m not sure how it works but it doesn’t look like they cook or clean, just go clubbing, talk about going and try to navigate group politics. If that doesn’t sound like Oxford without the essays or bills I don’t know what does. Who’s having the last laugh now?