For Some, College Is Not The Right Track

, , , , | | Learning | July 25, 2019

(I work in student accommodation. Some international students arrive to live on campus earlier than other students. I get to the office to find the managers laughing with a note in their hand.)

Me: “What’s so funny?”

Manager: “So, you know how some students can start living here early if they are international students?”

Me: “Yeah?”

Manager: “Well, this student stayed his first night last night and has a couple of complaints.”

Me: “Okay, what’s wrong? It’s not that bad here.”

(They looked at each other and started laughing again and handed me the note. I read the note and had to read it again to make sure I’d read it properly. The student couldn’t sleep because the campus was near some train tracks and he was demanding we stop the trains from running in the future. He didn’t understand that we had no control over the trains. All we could do was offer some earplugs and wish him the best.)

That Relationship Was Over In A Flash

, , , , , , , , | | Romantic | June 12, 2019

A boy I dated in college thought it was great fun to try to get girls to flash him while he and his friends were driving down the highway. He never did it while I was in the car because that was disrespectful to me. But when he was with his buddies, it was okay because that’s what boys do. I tried to explain that it really wasn’t acceptable behavior, but he brushed me off. (Yes, I know, I should have dumped him right there, but I was young and dumb.)

The day after this conversation, he came to my dorm room to study before going out with his buddies. I asked if he intended to play this flash game again, to which he angrily replied that it wasn’t a big deal and I was overreacting. To quote him, “Tits are tits. You have them. So what?”

His friends arrived and crowded into my room, ready to go on their adventure. Before they left, I asked for everyone’s attention and lifted my shirt, showing my breasts to my boyfriend and all of his friends.

They cheered and clapped. He was livid. How could I do something so trashy? Why was I being such a w****? Did I want to bang all of his friends? What was wrong with me?

I stood there calmly waiting for him to run out of air before I replied, “So, you can look at other girls, but other guys can’t look at me?”

He gaped like a fish out of water while his friends stood there in awkward silence. I told him if he thought his game was acceptable, I was going to continue showing off my body to anyone who asked. He stormed out without saying another word.

When he returned that evening, he said he was willing to forgive me if I promised to never act like that again. I shut the door in his face.

Putting The Ouch Into Couch

, , , , , | Friendly | March 24, 2019

(It’s the week before spring break. I have a ton of work due over the next few days and I am stressing quite a bit. It’s Tuesday night, around 1:30 am, and one of my three roommates leaves for twenty minutes and comes back into the dorm with a guy in tow. I’m sitting on the couch writing a paper and eating M&Ms out of a large jug my mother bought me as a random gift a few weeks ago.)

Guy: *looks at the candy, then back up at me* “It’s like that, huh?”

(I have no idea what he means, but I shrug and say sure. This isn’t the first time she’s brought a random dude in at ungodly hours and I don’t have time to have a conversation. As the evening goes on, it’s apparent that he doesn’t plan on leaving for the night. Come 3:30, he’s still in the room I share with my roommate — we live in a two-bedroom, apartment-style dorm, two girls to each room — and they’re LOUD, laughing, making noises and watching TV. There is no way I am going to be able to sleep with a random dude in my room and with so much noise, but I don’t feel like starting a fight at 3:00 am, so I quietly grab a pillow and blanket from my bed and sleep on the couch. The guy doesn’t leave until almost 6:00 am on Wednesday morning. My roommate all but ignores me until 11:00 pm the next day, but has no problem loudly complaining to another roommate about my behavior last night. I wasn’t rude when retrieving the pillow and blanket, and I never once complained about them, so I am confused as to why I am the bad guy. I shrug it off. I want to say something, but being in an active fight with my roommate sounds more like an annoyance than a solution so I ignore her.)

Roommate: *icily and not making eye contact* “[Guy] apologizes that you felt you had to sleep on the couch last night.” *emphasis on “apologizes”*

(She then rolled over to play on her phone, and the silence between us was deafening. I had somehow offended her by quietly retreating to the couch to sleep, but the fact that she brought a guy in, without warning, from 2:00 to 6:00 am on Wednesday morning was fine? I think I’m going to put in for a room change.)

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.

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