If you’re suffering from OWFOMO (O-Week Fear of Missing Out), I’m here to inoculate you. As you may know, the price of ACCESS cards has decreased from Utterly Bankrupting to I Guess I Could Lease An Organ Out. The benefit of buying a new ACCESS card this year was that I got to pick up another showbag of sponsored detritus. Here is a comprehensive guide to that detritus.
A calico bag with a picture of a corn with a unicorn horn on it, which fills the USU’s quota of generic visual puns about horny students for the year.
Two hipster notebooks. Notebook #1 is A4, spiral-bound, with minimalist drawings of twigs as cover art, to remind users of the forests destroyed in the production of the notebooks. You’ll probably draw idly in it while not listening to your lectures. There are no margins, but one could always add them with a ruler. Notebook #2 is smaller, has a pleasing matte white cover (same twig motif), and blank pages in a creamy stock. I have just discovered both notebooks are 100% recycled, so I’ll take back the line about forests being destroyed and say instead that these notebooks have inherited the bad karma of the forests their parent-notebooks destroyed, much like how my Grandfather fought for the wrong side in WW2. I look forward to letting these notebooks collect dust until my parents landfill them when I eventually move out of home.
Twenty bags of “Passion Raspberry” flavoured Lipton tea, which is more passion than I’ve had my entire life.
A postcard that you can plant and grow into a flower while it peacefully biodegrades, which I posted self-addressed. Will report on the quality of the flower in 4-6 weeks. Will not let the quality of the flower distract me from the pressing environmental issues not solved by biodegradable novelties.
A Broadway Shopping Centre directory that promotes consumerism while demanding in no uncertain terms that you “be you”. The first 500 students to be themselves enough to visit the centre’s customer service desk get a free Hoyts movie ticket.
A flyer advertising Boost Mobile’s reasonable deals on data recharges, which is pointless because it is not as cheap as Yatango.
A “free” (except you paid ~$80 for this bag of stuff) map of YHA hostels in Australia, which is like receiving a map of couchsurfing opportunity on your parents’ street. Contains cheerful but vague information about YHA hostels, like “has an excellent ratio of showers and toilets to guest numbers”, without providing the actual ratio or any quantifiable definition of “excellent”.
A flyer advertising the Future Music Festival. I just transferred to an arts degree, so this is probably the only meaningful future on my horizon.
A flyer that claims to be a $200 voucher for textbooks but actually has many expensive terms and conditions. Also contains the confusing phrase “receive $200 worth of free textbooks”.
A novel called The Hope We Seek by Rich Shapero, which is packed with a soundtrack on CD. The blurb describes it as an “epic force and seductive allegory” and also says something about finding meaning in life. The plot is about mining which is strange considering the bag’s focus on recycling, until you realise Rich Shapero paid for his book to be inserted and the USU’s values are cash negotiable.
A bottle of Wasabi flavoured Mayonnaise, which has the consistency of a plastic bag full of salt water and tastes similar.