Roommate confessions

Op-eds Opinions

OPI Roommates Emily Thiessen_webThe shit-spiral that is roommate relationships

Roommates, much like intimate relationships, can bring out the best and worst in us. Things usually start out great, honeymoonin’ and cooking dinner for one another, but disrespect is a delicate line to trod, especially in a house of six people. Some are more neurotic than others, and a few months is all it takes for the Sharpie marker to come out to mark the levels on “his” milk. This is of course in response to a fellow roomie with sticky paws, because if the line wasn’t low, it had been leveled with water.

Long story short, things did not work out. We all went our own way, bitter words were spoken, and injustice hung low in the air for a few of us.  Years later, in the emotional heat of a dark and balmy night, the temptation to settle an old score reared its ugly, spontaneous head. The sticky-pawed roommate and myself came upon the milk man’s sad-looking car parked under a quiet neighborhood street light. The decision was hasty. Moments later, the light shone down on the naked rump of a young man squatting, pants around ankles, delicately coiling a steaming turd on the car’s hood. In the odd case, revenge is a dish best served hot and fresh.

I’ve heard of a fear of flying, but come on, bro.

My roommate (my brother) put his food scraps in the container on our counter. He didn’t make the connection between the container and taking it out to the compost in the backyard. At all. Maybe he thought a magic wormhole would whisk them away to Neverland or something.

I had no idea he was doing this. Fast forward a few weeks. He asked me why there were flies in our suite. They were gathering in the kitchen above the compost container. I opened it and got a faceful of flies. A long string of choice words followed.

It turned out that my brother is terrified of flies. We needed to get rid of the container—quick. He wouldn’t go near it at all. He just stood there nervously on the other side of the room and watched while I disposed of the container. This was after he’d geared up with towels and oven mitts like he was going out to fight the plague.

For the next week or so, he actually made me go into rooms ahead of him and check whether there were flies present.

I’ve had enough of your repugnant rebel yell.

If there is one thing I hate, it is being woken up at 2 in the morning; it’s even worse if it’s to the sound of someone hacking up a lung. As a rule, I don’t ask about others’ bodily functions, but when sounds of them echo off the walls of my room in the middle of the night we become intimately familiar. I will overlook your old dishes and early morning drum and bass as long as I don’t have to be jolted awake in the middle of the night by the guttural bellow of that mucus-filled nose cavity violently spewing out of your gargling throat. Do you really have that much phlegm? It’s not just a snot rocket, but five full minutes of your deep growling coughs. At first I was disgusted—I could not even believe what was going on—but after weeks of continuous expectoration I am starting to worry if there is something medically wrong. Maybe you should see a doctor.

OPI Roommates Emily Thiessen3_web