WHAT IS AAARDVARK? This is exactly the question you may have Asked one of the purple-headed sanitary inspectors lurking behind Aaardvark's cosy little barn in the Freshers' Mart. They may have looked up from their haystacks and dizzied you some bafflegab about tea strainers or the international sock market, without actually answering your all-too pertinent query. Fear not. Within this slip of translucent delight you will find out the truth, the whole truth and (besides the odd little white lie to protect our valued clientele) nothing but the truth
Although the cult of Aa-Ar-D'Vark has its roots in the Pre-Roman Iron Age over two thousand years ago, the University of York's Aaardvark society has only been around since about 1991, when 'twas founded by a funny man with a bead and his erstwhile cohorts to while away the long winter nights with merriment and general salubrity. Our basic aim, since then, has been to promote humour and fun on campus, and we carry out this endeavour through a variety of media.
We have in the past executed various pranks and jolly japes around the University, and if our new members have any bright ideas we shall continue so to do. Several members have been seen dressed in white floats offering to polish students' socks, while others have been seen in suitable attire competing in a swimming competition on dry land. Regular readers of The Guardian may have read a letter in the Notes and Queries column asking for confirmation that there existed somewhere in Yorkshire a sign saying 'Please do not throw stones at this notice". The sign did indeed exist - it was the work of Aaardvark. At the start of every new academic year, Aaardvark also conducts a Mystery Tour, so secret that even its organisers don't know the route it takes. This year's tour takes place on Wednesday Week 1, so meet at 2pm in Langwith snack bar for an afternoon's walk you'll never forget.
If all this sounds somewhat too extrovert for you, there is much more to Aaardvark which may take your fancy. For example, are you any good at writing comedy? We produce the University's only humour-oriented magazine, copies of which we on sale for a mere 40 pence at the Freshers' Mart or from any hapless member of the Society you happen to pass in the street. The new issue, entitled Ping! (for reasons based most probably around the ancient medical complaint Monkeys On The Knees) is currently being assembled and we need YOUR help to fill it full of wit and laughter.
Or, have you ambitions to be a new Buster Keaton or Terry Gilliam? If comedy film-making is your line then you may be interested to know that we have produced our own comedy show (Son of Rasputin) for YSTV, the campus TV network, and we will probably be filming more sketches for their Children in Need telecast this November, as well as making our own productions on our own camera (once we've got one!). We are also planning a Comedy Revue for the end of the term, so if performing in front of (or writing for) a live audience is you cup of Horlicks then please get involved (we welcome non-members as well in both TV and stage productions).
Finally, if you just like meeting like-minded people to have a laugh and a gossip, then our twice-weekly meetings are just the banana. We get together at 6pm on Monday evenings in Langwith snack bar (you'll see the sign!), and again on Wednesdays at 2pm. And occasionally our Rave Dude organises special social events so you can really get to know each other! There's no strict pattern to these meetings - just come and go as and when you please!
So there you have it - Aaardvark in a nutshell. Like the sound of it? Then come along to one of our meetings, write to us c/o SU Corridor, Goodricke, or E-mail us on SOCS166. We look forward to hearing from you and your gazelle!