The Roommates

I was thinking about roommates today, and then I got thinking about how glad I am not to have them anymore.

I mean, I kind of have a roommate now. I’m married to him. We share a house, a bed, and a tube of toothpaste. It’s like having a roommate… except I want to hang out with him on a regular basis, I am happy when he comes home, and I will always give him the bigger half of a Coffee Crisp bar.

I did not have that relationship with any of my other roommates. In fact, I came to dislike many of them. And, I told them so… on post-it notes, and to their faces.

It turns out many roommates feel that they are entitled… to leave their “crochet projects” on the living room floor for three weeks; to watch Jeopardy every single night (and I like Alex Trebek as much as the next gal); and to eat exactly half (or more) of a Coffee Crisp bar (just because they pay exactly half the grocery bill).

In college, I had my first “roommate experience”. I had four of them. We were five peas in a “pod”, in student housing.

I came to realize a few (ten) things:

1. Don’t leave your magazines out if you don’t want people to do the crossword puzzle.

2. A sock on the doorknob means: “class is in session”.

3. The bathroom will not get cleaned until all parties agree to said cleaning of bathroom, and hire cleaner to do said work.

4. A chore chart never works (and will in fact breed contempt).

5. Don’t leave your toothbrush in the bathroom (or in a visible location), if you don’t want me to use it against you*.

6. You can’t trust people (who you thought were your friends) not to use your expensive conditioner.

7. Cheese Whiz is not a dairy product. (This is unrelated to roommates, but is something that I learned in college.)

8. People will use your eggs if you don’t label each of them.

9. It helps if all roommates speak English (not Japanese).

10. When you drink too much vodka and Clamato juice, stay on the linoleum!

I don’t know how I managed to have roommates for so long. Seven years of roommates felt like six years in a penitentiary (and not one of those good ones with televisions and hair salons).

Thank God for marriage (mainly because it means that you don’t have to have roommates anymore – but also because being married is wonderful… and you get to “play house” like you did in kindergarten, except with more kissing and utility bills).

* I have (on occasion) used roommate’s toothbrushes against them. Meaning, when roommates have crossed me, I would dip their toothbrushes in the toilet** as a means of silent (but strangely satisfying) revenge.

** The toilet was always “clean” – but it’s still a toilet, isn’t it?


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