Hey, umm, what’s an Oil Thigh?

The Journal’s handy guide to sounding like a seasoned Ghetto veteran

Talking Like a Queen’s Student:

The Ghetto—The off-campus housing area populated mainly by students. With its overflowing garbage and run-down houses with hicknames like “The Booty Shack” and “The House of Cheese,” you’ll soon understand how the Ghetto got its name. But Homecomings on Aberdeen Street are unforgettable, and being so close to campus and downtown is a definite plus. Attempts to change its name to the Student Village were unsuccessful.

NOP—North of Princess Street. Students living on the other side of Princess from Queen’s are said to be “NOP.” Most of them insist their houses are really nice and the rent is reasonable, but campus-side-dwellers rarely make the trek to see for themselves. If you have “NOPers” in your classes, they’ll likely have interesting stories about their journey to campus.

Canmate—As opposed to roommates in res or housemates in the Ghetto, “canmates” are a pair of students who share a washroom between bedrooms in the new residences on campus. If you’re lucky enough to be living in Leggett or Watts Halls, you’ll use this term to refer to your bathroom buddy.

Floor-cest—Partaking in—ahem—relations with a member of one’s own floor in residence. Remember, the school year lasts eight months, and res walls are thin.

“65 to stay alive”—The grade average you’ll need to get into second year courses in most Arts and Science programs. Quite different from the motto on the Queen’s letterhead: “Preparing leaders and citizens for a global society.”

Townie—A year-round Kingston resident; used neutrally or (in the case of dirty old men at AJ’s) as an insult.

Cha Gheill—Gaelic for “No Surrender.” A line from Queen’s traditional cheer, the squeaky-clean Oil Thigh you’ll soon be learning.

GPA—No, not your grade point average—you didn’t think Queen’s was that kind of school, did you? Around these parts, this stands for “golden party armour”—the yellow and/or purple leather engineering jackets.

In and Around Campus:

Ban Righ—Pronounced “Ban-Ree.” One of the two cafeterias on main campus, with food provided by Sodexho. After a few weeks, you’ll be glad you have Flex Dollars.

JDUC (“Jay-Duck”)— No, Queen’s mascot is not some strange cross between a blue jay and a duck—we’re represented by Boo Hoo the Bear instead. The JDUC is the main student centre located at the corner of University and Union. It houses the AMS offices, a copying centre (P&CC), a used bookstore (the UBS), a coffee house (the Common Ground), a gift shop, post office, and much more. Its full name is the John Deutsch University Centre.

PEC—An appropriate acronym for the out-of-date Physical Education Centre. Queen’s student activity fees include a PEC membership that lets you access workout machines, fitness classes, a pool and more.

Queen’s Pub (QP), Clark Hall and the Grad Club—The three bars on campus. The QP is on the second floor of the JDUC, Clark Hall is the engineering pub above the Campus Bookstore, and the Grad Club (for everyone, not just grads) is at the corner of Union and Barrie. If anyone mentions Alfie’s, simply explain it was before your time.

The Hub—The intersection of University and Princess. This part of downtown Kingston is home to many bars and restaurants, most of which are owned by the Hub Corporation. Where you’ll want to go depends on your mood and the night of the week.

Kingston Transit (KT)—A free ride around Kingston with your student ID. Give yourself lots of time to decipher the schedule and even more time to reach your destination. Ask the drivers for help and have money for a taxi, just in case. Campus Security—You’ll see them patrolling campus and the Ghetto in their jeeps at night. They respond immediately to distress calls from the Blue Lights across campus, and are proud of their recent heroism in helping a family of ducks find their way from campus back to Lake Ontario.

Sciurus carolinensis—The scientific name for the Eastern gray squirrel. Campus and the Ghetto are crawling with thousands of them. They’ll tear open your garbage bags, die in conspicuous places, and may soon even be in your nightmares. Other creatures to watch out for in the student housing area: skunks, raccoons and nasty, many-legged “Ghetto bugs”—you’ll know one when you see it.

Faculty Distinctions:

Artsies, Commies, ConEddies, Eng-s, PhysEddies—Your labels for the next four or five years.

Gaels (ArtSci), Bosses (Comm), Capes (Nurs), FRECs (Eng), Teaches (ConEd), Coaches (PhysEd), Landlords (FYNIRS)—Orientation leaders, each distinctly dressed or dyed. Purple FRECs will heckle you on move-in day—don’t take their mockery to heart.

ASUS—The Arts and Science Undergraduate Society. Located at 183 University Ave., in the office known as the Core. Pronounced “asses,” it is the largest faculty society on campus. It provides volunteer opportunities with five different commissions and also organizes the ArtSci Orientation Week. The other undergrad faculty societies are CESA (Concurrent Education Students’ Association), ComSoc (Commerce Society), EngSoc (Engineering Society), NSS (Nursing Science Society), and PHESA (Physical and Health Education Student Association).

EngCut—The crazy hairdos of engineering frosh and their FRECs during Frosh week. Styling products include wire, fluorescent spray paint and anything else required to achieve the perfect mohawk or spike arrangement. Most resort to a razor to remove the ’do.

Where All Those Student Fees Go:

The Queen’s Centre—A massive project to expand the current JDUC and PEC and the largest initiative of its kind ever undertaken by Queen’s. It’s expected to get underway in 2005 and take 5,000 years to build.

AMS—Located in the lower ‘ceilidh’—Gaelic for gathering place—of the JDUC, The Alma Mater Society is the central undergraduate student government at Queen’s. Its committees, services, and clubs offer both volunteer and employment opportunities. But be warned: their election results sometimes take days to process—just ask last year’s exec candidates.

CFRC 101.9 FM—Legend says the campus radio station, a student-run AMS service, was officially introduced during a 1929 football game against McGill as “Canada’s Famous Rugby Champions.”

Walkhome—As its name suggests, this AMS service makes sure students get where they need to go after dark safely. A guy and girl will walk or bike you anywhere within Walkhome’s huge service range. Call 533-9255 (WALK) to arrange your free pick-up and delivery.

Golden Words (GW)—The campus humour newspaper and the Journal’s sworn enemy. Well, not really. But it is the only good thing about Wednesday mornings.

Academics, Advocacy, et al.

Arts and Science Faculty Advisors

These lovely people can help ArtScis with almost any course-related source of stress, from academic options to rules and procedures. They’ll even remind you of the value of a liberal arts degree, which will be very reassuring as Frosh Week cries of “McDonald’s!” ring in your ears.

Academic Affairs Commission

This branch of the Alma Mater Society (AMS) makes sure the academic concerns of Queen’s students are heard by the University administration and by the federal and provincial governments. They also run an Academic Grievance Centre staffed by well-informed volunteers.

Peer Academic Support Service (PASS)

This service, geared specifically towards frosh, offers walk-in advising about courses and programs. You also may find them giving presentations in res or to FYNIRS.

Education on Queer Issues Project

A division of the Social Issues Commission of the AMS, EQuIP works to promote awareness of lesbian, gay, bisexual, and transgendered issues at Queen’s. It organizes Queerientation Week in September and other events throughout the year.

Human Rights Office

This independent office provides resources and support to anyone with discrimination concerns, be they sexism, racism, heterosexism, or just about anything else. They'll help you deal with a human rights complaint or give seminars on how to create a diverse, welcoming campus.

MindFind Tutoring

MindFind is the peer tutoring program run by the Arts and Science Undergraduate Society (ASUS). Tutors must have already earned a minimum grade of 75% in the course at hand, and are paid $7/hour by you and $2/hour more by ASUS.


Perfect if you’re feeling swamped by your Engineering course load. A program run by the Engineering Society, Englinks matches students with appropriate tutors.

The Writing Centre

This cute little house at 140 Stuart Street gives free workshops and one-on-one tutorials to help students in all disciplines with their writing skills. While the tutors won’t write your essay for you, they can offer useful research and editing tips. Sign up early—this service is in demand.

—Compiled by Megan Grittani-Livingston

Shameless health promotion

Campus Observation Room

Not to be confused with the ASUS Core, the COR is open in Vic Hall and on West Campus during Frosh Week and Homecoming, and provides a free, volunteer-staffed space for drunken students to sleep it off safely.

Health, Counseling and Disability Services

Located in the LaSalle Building across from Adelaide Hall, HCDS offers medical, psychiatric, and health promotion services.

Peer Support Centre

Not all students feel comfortable speaking with doctors about their personal issues, which is why this service, confidential and staffed by students, was established. You’ll find it in the JDUC upstairs club space.

Sexual Health Resource Centre

Located in the upper level of the JDUC, the SHRC offers confidential information as well as at-cost condoms and related goodies.

Intramural/varsity sports

Queen’s has an extensive sports program with opportunities for athletes at all levels—everything from lacrosse and rugby to fencing and curling. Intramurals are also popular on campus, and the highlight is BEWIC Sports Days, when more than 1,000 students participate in a 4-sport marathon. For more information, check out goldengaels.com or visit the PEC.

—Compiled by Monica Cheung

All final editorial decisions are made by the Editor(s)-in-Chief and/or the Managing Editor. Authors should not be contacted, targeted, or harassed under any circumstances. If you have any grievances with this article, please direct your comments to journal_editors@ams.queensu.ca.

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