LSE Life: Friendship or Politics?


I still remember my first day at LSE; it was like Chicken Little stepping into the big city. I was going to be a university student, wasn’t aware of the semester system and above all I was going to be meeting new people, which was both exciting and terrifying at the same time.

I remember how, at first my class was so segregated and the boys used to sit at one side of the class whereas the girls occupied the other side. The passage between the two sides seemed to be acting as a border, the only thing missing were some guards. Eventually, there were some interactive sessions and suddenly it changed from being like India and Pakistan to becoming a family similar to the one shown in “Hum Saath Saath Hain.”

We started celebrating birthdays’ as if we were happier about our class mate’s birth even more than his parents. Arranging cakes, going out for birthday treats, sitting in the football ground and having gossip session with our groups etc. Those were fun days.

Moving ahead two semesters and the time came for us to be divided according to our majors. Now this seemed really difficult at the moment. Let’s be honest here, we were like the “Dil Chahta Hai” group, just a little bigger in terms of people but alas, it had to be done and so we were separated by LSE’s cruel rule of divide and conquer but even that did not affect us.

Before you know it we started skipping classes and meeting up in free slots just to spend some time with each other. The feels were strong in this group.

A month passed and our friends in different majors started making new friends and so did we. Then some time later I started hearing things about myself from people who said they heard them from my “so called friends” and I thought they must have said it in different context from what I had judged. Time passed and I kept hearing different things from different people until I realized, “wou mujhay chooza bana rahay thay”. We confronted each other, fought and argued but that was the end of those friendships. Now we see each other but we barely say anything except a formal greeting here and there. We still remember our friends but not in good words and I’m sure they do the same.

I’m in my 3rd year now, I see freshies coming to LSE who are so enthusiastic about university life, about making new friends, celebrating birthday’s etc. I see them and think to myself and say “koi baat nahi aur ek saal ki baat hai, sab pata chal jayega”. That is how university politics shapes your life for the better but enjoy the years none the less because you aren’t going to get any younger and life does not have a rewind button.

The author is a junior at LSE.

Muhammad Ali

BBA III- Section L