>>> The Rollercoaster of Drama
By staff writer Simonne Cullen
April 10, 2005

Fights between roommates usually end up in a territorial battle. You butt heads for one night and after that everything the other person does for the rest of the week is wrong. Little things that never really annoyed you before now blaringly stand out. You may have left a couple of dirty dishes out, but since her pile is a little bigger than yours you decide to snap at her: “I always clean the dishes why don't you try to do work for a change?!” And the response really depends on your roommate. Because if you have a nice roommate who isn't used to confrontation she may cry. She will run out of the room crying to all your groups of friends and from then on you're known as the Insensitive Dish Nazi. A cool roommate will then calmly clean all the dishes, go out and buy disposable cups, plates and sporks, and point out that she won't ever have to use the dishes again. A hot tempered roommate will throw all the dirty dishes out into the hallway and say something like, “The dishes have relocated themselves. Maybe if we're lucky, room service will come pick them up and then you'll get herpes you dumb cunt. I hate living with you.”

All I'm saying is, girls are crazy. It's happened somewhere.

Then there's always the silent treatment method of fighting where you and your roommate refuse to communicate with each other. One comes in for class, the other leaves. No longer do you share the music on your computer—one sits with headphones on, the other sits in dead silence. But you can always tell if someone is mad by the way they type and shut the door. When a roommate is sleeping you secretly hope that your intensive typing is keeping them awake. And let's face it, it's always a fun contest to see who can slam the door the hardest, just to prove that (SLAM!) you're still mad, (WACK!) you're not giving in, and (BANG!!) not even alcohol is going to be able to solve this problem. In which case you're really screwed.

“I'd rather pay for the whole table at a restaurant than watch everyone pull out calculators and bicker to a dead end about tax and tip.”

Don't you love the friends who stay neutral when you're fighting? You know, the ones who don't want to take sides, don't want to get involved, are content with the awkward silence at the lunch table, and pretend that doors aren't be slammed uncontrollably (it's probably just the wind)? They just don't want to be thrown into politics where they might actually have to be decisive—at least to stop the incessant CLICK CLICK CLICK of the keyboard. (How are the buttons not just popping off?) To me these friends are known as uninvolved inconsiderate confidants who won't confirm that the other person is wrong and I'm completely right—to the rest of the world they're known as the Swiss.

And then there's always a thrower lurking somewhere in the mist. You know this person. She's pretty cool under pressure. You've never seen her overreact or throw a tantrum. Normally she's just completely put together—not a shiny hair on her head out of place. Then one day someone screws her over. A professor gives her an unfair grade, a bad driver cuts her off on the street, the toilet paper was put on backwards causing an unsightly kink in her folding pattern before wiping her ass—whatever makes her tick. But when she snaps—especially if it's the first time—you're not ready to see her torpedo her knick knacks across the room. The floor and wall have evidence of broken picture frames all over it, perfume bottles are leaking into the carpet, and the once peaceful snow village has been victimized by a lost eco-system when she violently chucks the snow globe into the door. Then she'll storm off, leaving the roommate to clean it up before she gets back and has to see the carnage of items that would have gotten a pretty good price at a garage sale.

A word of caution: when this individual is pissed at you, she has aim like a sniper chilling in a bell tower on a cloudless day. So when her miniature tower of Pisa comes flying at your head, just pray you've got better coordination than you do when you're playing Mario Kart.

On a related note, why do guys get all bijigity about controllers to their video games? Is their street value so high that it's worth a short cry to them when you accidentally drop it? I've seen the same guys who watch their laptop chill by a spilt open container all day volunteer their own shirts to wipe off a controller if even a bead of sweat gets on it. Next time you go to a guys room look at the video game controllers—they are the cleanest entity in the room. The Playstation may be covered in dust, but guaranteed the controllers will look just as new as the day they were purchased.

Back to fighting. Money is always going to be an issue. Everyone goes to the ATM and therefore everyone has twenties. And no one is ever around with change. So someone always ends up paying more than her fair share, and the topic of gas money could have it's own column. Let's just say this: we're all poor at college, but don't never offer someone gas money, or if you do promise to buy them a drink, you better remember it down at the bars. You can't blame someone when they're sober and driving on two bucks and forty-three cents of gas dug out from underneath the car seat.

Confronting people about money matters is the only confrontation I am scared of. I'd rather pay for the whole table at a restaurant and be done with it than watch everyone pull out calculators and bicker to a dead end about tax and tip, only to have them forget to pay me back later. Because at some point down the line when you're short on cash, you'll end up bringing up the “you owe me” subject. Some people are so sensitive about money that they'll just fling a twenty at you, you won't accept, and then it just sits there on the ground about to be blown away, when really both of you want it and feel you rightfully deserve it. If life was scripted, this would be the part where it says “[Enter Bum]”—and since the girls feel really bad about fighting over a Dairy Queen bill, they'll just give the guy the cash. But because we can't cue people to the set of our lives the money just continues to sit there waiting to see which grabby hands will triumph first.

Fighting with your significant other can be emotionally exhausting, but I've stopped feeling sorry and consoling the couples who are constantly bickering. Oh they claim it's definitely over this time, that one of them call her a bitch, that this constant back and fourth is too tiring, that it's really done this time. All I want is the five bucks he owes me…can anyone break a twenty? Where's the Playstation controller that's going to be the first to hit the wall when I see him again—but that never really happens. They just make out instead. Which in the long run just keeps all those knick knacks piling up.