What would Bertie Wooster say?

I once surprised a noted English number-theorist by asking him a burning question that had been on my mind for a long time: “Do students of Cambridge and Oxford still steal policemen’s helmets on Boat Race Night, as in a Wodehouse novel?”

Apparently, a reveler decided to interrupt the race itself today, which I think would have been met with a decided “Tut tut” from even the stiffest-upper-lipped of the Woosters.

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Kowalski

I am a professor of mathematics at ETH Zürich since 2008.

One thought on “What would Bertie Wooster say?”

  1. It must be some decades since that was a typical entertainment after the Boat Race. From memory the consequence of pinching a policeman’s helmet in Bertie’s day was a night in the cells, a ten-bob fine the next morning, and no criminal record (breach of the peace, not assault). While many British police, even in the capital, are still unarmed, the aftermath nowadays would probably be much less comfortable.

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