Every year the local Cambridge paper runs a story about local residents complaining about May Balls -- the conspicuous consumption, the binge drinking and, most of all, the noise. May Balls were presumably (like most other things in Cambridge) a nineteenth-century invention, though they now come in various more or less politically correct forms.... those where you can buy a single ticket, for example, or those that call themselves a "June Event" not a "May Ball".
But the basic principle remains the same. A lot to drink, a lot of noise, and a very late (or alternatively 'early') finish.
The campaign against this style of jollification has been led this year by the esteemed Professor of Palaeography at King's College London (who happens to live in Cambridge -- who would like all May Balls to end by 1.00 am).
There are some arguments against May Balls. Sure, this is after the end of our students' exams -- but there are still school students struggling with GCSEs etc. Why should they be kept awake by the uni students having fun? And it is also true that the DJ style (as pictured above) doesn't do much for out non-socially-elitist image.
But hang on. Can't the middle aged get a bit too curmudgeonly about the whole thing?