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29th April 2024

Main Library Musings – Rant column #3

Edition three of the Opinion section’s rant column, Main Library Musings, sees three emotional trajectories: a complaint about the weather, a love letter to a bacon barm, and an ode to the best study space in the Main Library
Main Library Musings – Rant column #3
Credit: The Mancunion

Sumayyah Khalid, Opinion Writer

The spring weather we’re having is unpredictable. Morning blue skies and sunshine can give way to afternoon rain and blustery wind. Dressing to satisfy Manchester’s meteorological whims has become a distant dream.
Yet, the horrors persist indoors. Temperatures across university buildings are consistently inconsistent, the main offenders being Main Library and the Students’ Union. It’s time they were brought to justice.
A thick jumper and raincoat may serve me well in my battle against the elements. Then, I enter Main Library and I have two options: the escalator to the notoriously “toasty” Blue 1, where I’ll surely overheat, or the lift to any other area, where I’ll be wishing I’d layered up. Essay drafts and air draughts coexist on those upper floors. I get chills just thinking about it.
There’s no greater upper floor than The Hive, the home of The Mancunion, where I regularly attend section meetings (this isn’t paid promotion). I’d say it’s all fun and games, but the heatwave that engulfs me when I enter begs to differ. It’s hellish.
So sadly, the latest addition to my spring ensemble is a puffer coat – whether I’m wearing it or cradling it in my arms.

Jess Tubb, Opinion Writer

We’ve all been there – deadlines looming, motivation at an all-time-low, and a single, mouldy crust of bread staring at you from your cupboard. So how can you get into university with a full stomach, a laptop, and a dream, when there are so many barriers in your way?
Let me get you all onto the little trick that works every time: Corridor Coffee’s Bacon Barm.
Yes, I cringe every time I hear my Southern accent saying “barm,” and my day is instantly ruined when the bun is left in the oven for too long. But, nothing will stop me taking advantage of the sweetest deal on campus. A roll stuffed with hot bacon and a tea or coffee for just £2.50! Perfect for little pigs like me.
I wish I was sponsored by Corridor Coffee, because the amount of money I spend there is criminal…but at least you get a stamp on your loyalty card for every hot drink.
My university career peaks between the hours of 9-11am – it’s now my favourite time of day. After that, it’s game over.

Frances Briggs, Science Editor

I have a safe space in the library. We all have a spot we gravitate to, be it Blue 4, Red 2 or Green 3; there’s a place we’ll be easily found. But mine is the best. It’s girl corner. No other area has got me like the back of Blue 3 by the windows.

In first year I dabbled with Ali G (horrifying, trauma-inducing); in second year, Green 2’s catwalk was home; in third year Red 2’s music room was chilly but productive. None of these options felt right for fourth year. So, returning to the Main Library after Easter and anticipating the library-filled, coffee-fuelled diss weeks to come, I set off on an exploration through Main Library’s personal rainbow.

Red felt tired, Orange a purgatory between Blue and Purple, Green had too many impeccable outfits for focusing. Making my way up to the third floor I was a) out of breath b) sweating profusely and c) reaching the end of my tether. And then, rounding the corner, panting past the rows of chemistry text books, was a sweet, sweet serendipity: plugs, big desks, comfortable chairs, windows with a view.

Not only do these four things (plugs, desks, chairs, windows) make this corner a jackpot destination, but there’s something else. Every day at 9:30 I turn up, and so too do the rest of the girls. For some reason this spot draws a more feminine crowd and it’s a delight to have the male gaze so far removed and be amongst the comfort of the female focus. Girl corner is undeniably the best study space.

Sumayyah Khalid

Sumayyah Khalid

Winner of Writer of the Year (The Mancunion) (SU Awards 2023) | Highly Commended for Best Newcomer (The Mancunion) (SU Awards 2023) | Shortlisted for Best Newcomer (Rising Star) in the UK (SPA National Awards 2023)

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