Cambridge, UK, United Kingdom
Jovan, 25
Computer Scientist, Cambridge University
see his Cambridge, UK city guide

a bit about Jovan

What do you do and why do you do it?

I'm a research student, a stand-up comedian, a magazine editor, and an event organiser! I guess I do all this stuff because I always need to have lists to write, and tasks to do or organise myself around. But seriously, I do research because it's fulfilling to work on problems and help advance knowledge and technology; I started comedy basically as therapy and continue because it's fun to put together ways to share my humour and see other people enjoy it too; I edit a magazine because I love print design; and I love organising events because, well... the aforementioned lists and tasks 😜

What’s the worst job you’ve ever had and why was it so effing bad?

I wouldn't say I've ever had a bad job, but the worst time I ever had at a job was when I worked as an iOS software developer for a startup in Copenhagen. The place, the work, and the people were amazing and beautiful, but I had moved into my own apartment for the first time, in a country where I knew no-one, and it coincided with (and worsened) a really bad period in my struggle with mental illness. That said, given the opportunity to take it back, I definitely wouldn't! I definitely grew a huge amount while I was there.

Were you born and raised in Cambridge? If not, where did you grow up and what brought you to Cambridge?

I was born in Sheffield, did some growing up in Yorkshire, some in London, and then came to Cambridge for university. I think I'm almost done growing up, give me a couple of years.

What’s your current hood in Cambridge and what’s the best/worst thing about it?

'Hood' is definitely the wrong way to describe the historic centre around my college, Trinity. The best thing is probably the fact that there's almost always the scent of food on the air somehow, the worst that it gets dead and a bit lonely outside of university terms.

What kind of music do you listen to and what kind of music do you absolutely HATE?

I mostly listen to hip-hop, rap, and R&B, with quite a bit of jazz standards and motown around the edges. I don't think there's any music I hate, but if ballet counts, probably that—I went to the Nutcracker as a child and it was probably the least enjoyable musical experience anyone in my family has ever had.

You’re broken hearted - what tracks does your heartbreak playlist consist of?

I actually made the perfect playlist for this, hold on! Where is it... ah, to name a few it's got: Ain't No Sunshine (obviously), Jeff Buckley's Hallelujah (my favourite track in the world), Mr Tambourine Man, Red Red Wine, Carry on Wayward Son (see, it's not all downbeat!), Overkill, The Boxer, Hurt, Could You Be Loved, and—obviously—finishes on Don't Worry, Be Happy!

Name the best TV shows of all time, and what makes them so good?

This is a horrible question... ok. Parks and Recreation might be the greatest sitcom of all time because even at its saddest points it keeps you hopeful for humanity—once it got its hooks into my heart, it's never failed to make me smile. I have an unironic, unabashed adoration for Downton Abbey, and I don't think I can explain it. In terms of drama, I'm a season into Les Revenants and to say anything would be a spoiler. Breaking Bad was an unbelievably layered journey, which had me hooked even though very early on I began to hate the main character. OH GOD RUNNING OUT OF SPACE! QUICK! AVATAR THE LAST AIRBENDER (EARLY) THE SIMPSONS GAME OF TH

Who’s your hero and where in Cambridge would you take them out for a serious hang?

The legendary barista Callum Hale-Thomson, of course. I'd take him to my house and force him to watch me make coffee comically and painfully wrong.

Where do you buy those fabulous clothes of yours?

I usually shop only twice a year, but in big batches. I rate Uniqlo for basics, Massimo Dutti for shirts and knitwear, and all my tailoring is from Hackett, but apart from that it's a mixed bag!

What’s the area/ spot in town you’ll never be caught dead in?

Kuda, the club beneath Waterstones (yeah, welcome to Cambridge)

Where do you go in Cambridge for a casual night out?

If we're not hanging out at a friend's place, a group of us will head either to the college bar or to a pub—usually The Mitre or the Baron of Beef (they're next door to each other).

Where would you go in Cambridge to celebrate some freaking good news?

If it's morning time, I'd go to the college bar/cafe and see which of my friends is around, and try to drag them to eat somewhere semi-fancy. Otherwise, if it's nice out we'd grab a bottle of prosecco and head to the paddocks on the river. If it's evening though, it's off to the rooftop of the Varsity Hotel for some drinks at the River Bar!

What’s your choice of transportation in Cambridge and why?

Bike, it's really the only way to get around in this city!

What are the Cambridge spots a first-time visitor can’t miss?

I think you should probably see all the classic sights, the old colleges on the walk from Magdalene Bridge to the Fitzwilliam. Go up the tower of Great St Mary's Church if you can!

What are the Cambridge spots tourists should run from screaming?

People are always asking me how to get to the Bridge of Sighs. I don't even know if you can even walk there as a visitor, and honestly it's not that cool if you're walking over it. Punting under it, on the other hand, is a much better experience.

Tomorrow’s your last day in Cambridge. How do you spend it?

Honestly, I'd probably spend it around my college, hanging out in the bar with my friends, and in the evening get a kebab from Madingley Road and eat it on the picturesque Great Court Fountain as the sun goes down.

What’s your favorite vacation city in the world and why?

I'm going to cheat here and say where I most want to go on vacation—New York. I don't know that it's the best, but I do know for sure that it's going to take me another three weeks there to feel like I've properly experienced it!

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