Raucous, rapturous and ridiculous: three words that you could safely use to describe the events in Venue One last night, as one of the most popular and promiscuous events of RAG Week once more rolled into town. With seemingly more ways of donating to charity than ever before, it would not come as a surprise if I heard that this year’s Mr. St Andrews was the most successful yet: with two exceptional hosts and twelve willing competitors, it was a rip-roaring affair that, thankfully, didn't take itself too seriously.
Splattered throughout the evening were opportunities to raise money for charity – for starters, we found out that each contestant had been raising money themselves for the event, and, sadly, the person with the least amount of money raised became the first person to be eliminated from the competition – a very tactful way of encouraging the competitors not just to make a fool of themselves on stage. With a contestant auction closing the first act and a sex-gifts raffle opening the second, audience members were encouraged to donate as much money as possible to a good cause, especially when Association President Freddie Fforde was put up for auction – my academic daughters were thoroughly upset when I didn't provide the winning bid for them.
As for the competition itself, it was full to the brim with challenges that, as always, mainly involved varying sexual activities. Chat-up lines were followed by the contestants pairing up and demonstrating various sexual positions which no-one had ever heard of – points were awarded for originality as well as accuracy, so you can only imagine what occurred when the boys were asked to perform ‘The Ascent to Desire’. This was followed by putting condoms on cucumbers with just their mouths, a fitness round – at which point Mr Athletic Union told us that his physiotherapist had advised against him ever doing squats with more than 50kg weights, leading to a cacophony of boos and a swift exit from the competition – and eventually, with four contestants remaining, we hit the talent round.
As this wasn’t St Andrews Got Talent, I didn't have particularly high hopes going into this round, which was rather reminiscent of the hugely embarrassing counterpart one encounters on a Saturday evening on ‘Take Me Out.’ However, I was pleasantly surprised: Mr. McIntosh entertained us with a short but impressive beatboxing solo; Mr. Race2 bagpiped his way into the audience’s hearts; the Northern Irish Mr. Uni Hall charmed all the ladies with his rendition of an original song; but the most impressive by far was Mr. LGBT, whose mime in drag was easily the most entertaining thing I have seen all year. Mr. Uni Hall was eliminated, and after a rather revealing round involving taking clothes off Hockey Club girls, we were left with just two: Mr. Race2 and Mr. LGBT.
The resulting scavenger hunt involved more taking off of clothes (this time of almost-too-willing-to-take-their-bras-off audience members), ribbed condoms and tampons, but thankfully by this time most of the crowd were fairly merry, especially those who had been supplied with wine on the VIP tables. Thus, the crowd’s uproarious response to Mr. Race2 emerging triumphant was one of the loudest reactions of the evening, which involved foot-stamping, table-banging and cups and glasses flying everywhere, in what was definitely a fitting end to a bizarre but hilarious evening of entertainment.