Sorry, Not Sorry That You’re My Friend, Not Friend

, , , , , | Friendly | March 9, 2019

My college has a great program where, if you work full time so many hours during the summer, in addition to getting paid an hourly wage, you get free room and board on campus! The first summer I do it, it goes excellently. The second, they put us in a different dorm, the one that was just constructed and consists of suites — two rooms with two beds each, two bathrooms, and a small common area — so I have three “suitemates.”

By pure coincidence, my suitemates are all equine science majors who know each other; I’m an English Lit major who doesn’t know any of them. I don’t want to bother them, so I mostly keep to myself and leave them to hang out together, thinking I’d annoy them or be intruding if I tried to force myself into their circle for no reason. I’m an introvert, anyway, so I don’t mind being on my own. They never once invite me anywhere or ask me to do something with them, giving me no indication they want me to hang out with them. They also never once complain to me, never giving me any indication they have a problem with me at all.

I have hyper hearing — I have to sleep with earplugs — and one day, I hear a strange noise or vibration in the walls. I’m sure it is just something up with the AC or heat, but at the time, I’m really curious to know what it is. My roommate has no idea, so I go into the “hall” and knock on our suitemates’ door to ask if they know what it is. That’s when the director of whatever movie we’re in suddenly decides to change the tone and atmosphere of the scene without warning.

1) The two girls act horribly offended that I would ask them this, like I’m taking a great liberty. Think how a parent would respond to a child demanding they choose a certain company to refinance their house.

2) They say, “You know, we’ve had a lot of problems with you.”

3) They finish by informing me, “We’ve gone to the RA about you.”

I’m sincerely stunned and don’t try to hide it. They’re stunned that I don’t get why they’re so upset. At least they’re willing to explain. Their first complaint is my steps are too heavy when I walk, creating too much noise at night. No, they’ve never once mentioned or even hinted at this to me at all. The second is that I’ve been “unfriendly” because I haven’t tried to be their friend… again, with no indication whatsoever that they wanted me to… make an active effort to be their friend…?

Since they claim they’ve gone to the RA already about this, I go to her. She confirms that she was planning to meet with all of us to share their concerns with me and walks with me back to the room. We have a conversation that consists of them repeating that they find my lack of trying to become their best buddy “unfriendly,” also using the phrase, “afraid of you,” and me explaining that they’re all friends in the same classes and I didn’t want to bother them. How was I supposed to know they wanted me to make an effort to be their friend? And why would they want me to if they really found me so annoying? Nothing about their feelings or their way of handling it makes sense!

It’s the only conversation that ever takes place on the subject, which I assume means the RA found it ridiculous. Nothing changes except that I start tiptoeing if I walk around after dark. It is the result of two forces: the stereotypical-but-in-this-case-100%-true female practice to never confront someone directly when you have a problem with them but spread rumors about them behind their back, instead — in this case, to the RA, since there is no posse of high-schoolers available at the time — and the pervasive fear of all loners — remember, anyone who keeps to herself is obviously up to no good!

My family and I still laugh about their immature behavior. It’s hands-down the best roommate story any of us have. I look forward to sharing it with my niece if she goes to college in the far future.

Crazy Cat Lady Goes To College

, , , , , , , | Friendly | March 4, 2019

I grew up in the American midwest but moved 1000 miles away for school. I also attended a college that keeps a live tiger in an enclosure for our mascot. This, combined with my crazy cat person tendencies, led to a joke among my friends that if someone was ever caught breaking into the enclosure to pet the tiger, err on the side of caution and just assume it was me.

Three years after I moved, I woke up one Sunday to texts from a friend at school, my best friend who lived in North Carolina, and my sister, all wanting to confirm I was at school and not in my hometown. Confused, I told them all I was, and they dropped the subject.

A few hours later, I checked Facebook and one of the trending stories caught my eye: a woman got drunk, broke into the zoo in my hometown, fell into the tiger exhibit, and got bitten trying to pet the kitty. Putting two and two together, I texted my friends and sister, wanting to know if they thought I was was that idiot.

My school friend said she was pretty sure it wasn’t me, but wanted to double-check after recognizing my hometown.

My best friend said she wouldn’t have thought it was me, but the woman was drunk, and I am dumb when plastered.

My sister said she was fairly certain it wasn’t me, and wouldn’t have asked, except she got texts from a dozen friends and coworkers asking if it was me, and she wanted a firm yes or no before replying.

After a brief flash of righteous indignation, I realized I wasn’t actually angry, because that is something I would do, and checking that I was a thousand miles away was an entirely reasonable reaction.

Physically Unable To Calculate

, , , , , , | Friendly | February 12, 2019

(I have a massive migraine, but unfortunately, I have a calculus assignment and a physics assignment… which requires even more calculus.)

Me: “The human brain is not made to do calculus with a migraine!”

Roommate: “You could have stopped with, ‘calculus.’”

Perfect For Some Quantum Coffee

, , , , , , | Related | January 4, 2019

(It’s my first year living in a college residence. My mom is over, and I’m packing some stuff to take back home for the holidays. Among them is a mug, a replica of one that appears in a webcomic I am a big fan of. In the comic, the mug is seemingly indestructible.)

Mom: “You’re taking your mug?”

Me: “Of course! It’s the Captain’s Mug!”

Mom: “But you know you have a lot of mugs at home, right?”

Me: “IT’S THE CAPTAIN’S MUG.”

Mom: “Okay, I’m just worried that it’ll break on the–“

Me: “Captain’s Mug is indestructible! It can survive a black hole!”

Mom: “I’d like to wrap it in some–“

Me: “IT CAN SURVIVE A SINGULARITY!”

New Addition To The Millennium Trilogy: The Girl With The Twitter Account

, , , , , , , | Learning | November 7, 2018

(It’s Halloween night. I live in college residence, so a lot of people are trick-or-treating with their neighbours, and milling around to check out each other’s costumes and decorations. I bump into one of my roommate’s friends. She’s dressed a bit punk or goth, but not as a costume.)

Roommate’s Friend: *joking* “I’m dressed as a serial killer.”

Me: *looking at her outfit* “No, you’re dressed as Lisbeth Salander!”

(Lisbeth Salander is the protagonist of the Millennium trilogy, most famously “The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo.”)

Roommate’s Friend: “Yeah! Wait… How did you… Have you been stalking my Twitter?”

Me: *confused* “No?”

Roommate’s Friend: “Then… How did you know I… said that I…”

Me: “I didn’t…”

Roommate’s Friend: “Then how did you know I look like Lisbeth Salander?”

Me: “Because I’ve read the book and seen the movie?”

Roommate’s Friend: “Oh! I thought you were stalking my Twitter, because I literally just posted, ‘If anyone asks, I’m dressed as Lisbeth Salander.'”

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