Bad roommates are something almost everyone can relate to. Unless you still live at home or were fortunate enough to go from mom’s to a one bedroom, you have probably lived with someone that made you yearn for your mother’s nagging at one point or another. This Canada Day will make it nine years that I’ve lived in my apartment. Nine. Years.
While that is crazy enough (I moved out when I was 20 into a dream apartment and never left), what’s crazier is the fact that instead of living alone, in peace, I continue to choose to live with roommates. I don’t do this because I’m a masochist. I do this because while I can afford my place on my own, what I can’t afford is to live on my own and continue to take vacations every few months.
Frequent vacations > Peeing with the door open.
Anyway. Enough about my dream peeing situation (do I have an obsession with pee stories?). I’m about to share with you the five worst roommate stories I have. While some of these people made horrible roommates, it doesn’t necessarily mean they were bad people (there’s my disclaimer for the few of them I’m actually still friends with who may read this). Some people just aren’t meant to live together.
*Sidenote: having had a bunch of roommates, I’m absolutely horrified when I hear about couples that are getting married before they’ve lived together. Can you hear that? I believe it’s the sound of an expedited divorce.
Here we go.
#5 Tastes like burning
As a Virgo, aka the biggest worrier of the zodiac, if there is one thing that can make me hyperventilate any time of day, it’s thinking about my apartment burning down. Besides the thought of fire making me cry, it’s also the idea that when you live in a building, it’s not just your roommate you have to worry about being a liability. Nope. You could potentially be sharing a building with hundreds – or thousands – of liabilities. One person, ONE PERSON, could forget to blow out a candle and there goes your entire life. Gone. So imagine the amount of panties I’ve had to wash after coming home to burnt stove covers or smelling something burning from my bedroom. Almost every single roommate I’ve had has burned my stove covers at one point or another. They think they’re turning one burner on but actually turn on another one, and next thing you know I’m running into the kitchen from my room yelling “WHAT’S ON FIRE?” That’s the best part. Almost every time this has happened they haven’t even noticed. All I can do is pray every night before I go to sleep that this never happens when I’m not home. Assuming, of course, my prayers about winning the lottery are ignored.
#4 Friend or foe yo state your biz
One of the most important rules I’ve learned in almost a decade of renting is this:
Never live with a friend.
There are people who claim they have lived with a friend and everything was fine. Well, there are also people who claim they can be friends with an ex. I like to call these people “delusional.”
Living with a friend is like communism – in theory it is the best idea you’ve ever had. It never works though because one person always feels more entitled. Or, one person is an angry psycho.
I once was friends with a girl for about 4 or 5 years. We’ll call her Lisa S. No, L. Simpson. At the time, I was living with the most annoying roommate I’ve ever had (who happens to be responsible for #1 on this list) so when my friend suggested we live together I almost literally jumped at the idea. Within no time I told my roommate she had to move out and the nightmare began. Before L. Simpson had even moved in we were fighting. And by “we were fighting” I really mean she was being a control freak, and over the most bullllllllshit things. But by the time I realized what was happening it was too late to do anything about it, so she moved in.
At this time I was also in school. I had a friend from class over and we were working on an assignment in my room. Because we were still awake, the light in the hallway was still on but I closed my bedroom door so we wouldn’t be too loud. It was around 11 p.m.
Not 4 a.m. 11 p.m.
Instead of turning the light off herself (ironically the light switch was right outside her bedroom door), L. Simpson decides to text me, from the next room, telling me to turn the light off because she is trying to sleep. Fuck I’ve heard of people having trouble falling asleep, but if the little bit of light that comes through the crack between your door and floor keeps you up, you have bigger problems than me. Annoyed, I responded with something stating that I was still awake, and therefore the light will probably remain on because I have a guest over and I’m not going to do homework by candlelight.
Now, if any of you know someone with a temper problem, you know that it doesn’t matter what you say or do. If they are in a bad mood/drunk/sad/mad/awake and they are looking for a fight, a fight they are going to get. People with tempers don’t actually need something specific to be said or done to flip out, they just need an opportunity. Anyway long story short, I guess my sarcasm was that opportunity because the next text I got was full of expletives and insults. At this point my friend is wondering what the eff is going on and I’m wondering what the eff is going on, so like the sane, rational person I [sometimes] am, I went over to her room and knocked on the door and said “Lisa L. Simpson, do we need to talk about something?”
“IF YOU TRY TO FUCKING OPEN MY DOOR I WILL STAB YOU IN THE FACE. IMGOINGTOSTABYOUINTHEFUCKINGFACE!!!!!!”
I’ve been hit with a wooden spoon (mom), a rainstick (brother), I’ve even been punched in the head by a drunk Indian dude at a club before (at Fluid… of course) but I had never, ever been threatened by a friend, let alone one threatening to STAB ME IN THE FACE. I’m not sure who was more shocked, me or my friend from school. All I know is I’m the one who slept with one eye open that night.
I can’t remember if I’ve mentioned it in other posts before but my sense of smell is probably more intense than that of a Bloodhound. Or Vampire. Because of this, I tend to be quite the whiner when something doesn’t smell pleasant. This was an actual conversation I had years ago after coming in for a shift at HMV:
Vanessa: Did someone spill coffee?
V: Because it smells like spilled coffee.
S: Don’t you mean it smells like coffee?
V: No. It smells like spilled coffee.
S: There is no way you can smell the difference between coffee and spilled coffee!
V: Did you spill coffee or not?
S: Yes. But it was hours ago!
This is why I always joke about getting a tattoo that says The Nose Knows.
It was the first summer I was living in my apartment and I was trying to get used to living with someone who wasn’t raised as a clean-freak Italian. She was cooking ground beef, but something didn’t smell right. When she was done she said, “Aw man, this beef is rotten. What a waste.” And threw it out.
I was still working at HMV and used to do a lot of 1-9 p.m. shifts. So the next day I came home from work around 9:30 p.m. I open my apartment door and almost vomited on the spot. I have never (and still haven’t to this day) smelled anything like this inside anyone’s home. It smelled like Chinatown, on a hot as ass late summer night, when the garbage is piled along Spadina up to the sky. It was putrid. I had already forgotten about the meat from the nigh before so I was not only sick to my stomach, but confused as hell. With my shirt pulled over my face, I started sniffing around the apartment, just like the aforementioned Bloodhound would (I do this often when trying to locate where a smell, good or bad, is coming from). Eventually I reached the garbage can and opened it… and almost died. Roommate had thrown the ROTTEN meat away, but for some reason decided not to throw the garbage down the chute. So the ROTTEN meat had been sitting in the garbage now for 24 hours. I just happened to be the lucky gal who got to come home to it.
#2 Roly-Poly Fish Heads
I am a very open-minded person. Stop laughing! I am… kinda. I like trying new foods and visiting places I don’t live in and seeing how the rest of the world lives. That is, of course, unless said food and cultures gross me out. Like the dead animals hanging inside-out in Chinatown. Or eating fish heads. That shit is gross.
So you could imagine my dismay one night when I open my fridge door, looking for a nice, cool, refreshing beverage and found a pan with dried up fish heads in it. The sauce and/or grease that it had been cooked in had turned into a gel and it was undoubtedly the grossest thing that has ever been in my fridge. Not only was the sight itself disgusting, but the reason this find made it onto this list was that it wasn’t even in Tupperware. I opened my fridge and saw a pan covering another pan as a lid. How lazy do you have to be to do that? So of course, I lift the pan ‘lid’ off the pan ‘Tupperware’ to see what’s inside and BAM. This is what I see (please refer to the image at the bottom of this post).
I was so disturbed I threw both pans out immediately. Curiosity definitely killed this cat.
#1 The Environmentally Friendly Moron
As I mentioned, I have a very sensitive nose. So sensitive that I have actually woken up in the middle of the night from a boyfriend’s farts before (unfortunately, that’s a true story). So the number one worst roommate story begins with me waking up one morning to get ready for work, just like any other day. I go into the bathroom for my morning pee and as soon as I close the door behind me I immediately smell something foul. I was the first one awake so there was no way it was a lingering smell from my roommate’s deuce, so I was confused, but still half asleep anyway. As I’m sitting there I notice the smell is stronger. I look to my left and see something sitting on top of the garbage bin. It was almost like a cartoon where I rubbed my eyes to make sure what I thought I was seeing was really what I was seeing. And yes, it was. At the top of the garbage bin was a fully used tampon, wrapped in toilet paper. But not enough toilet paper that I didn’t know it was a fully used tampon wrapped in toilet paper. It was thinly wrapped enough that the blood has seeped through it to the point you could barely tell there was anything wrapping it up at all. This foul smell was my roommates DIRTY USED TAMPON SITTING OVERNIGHT 3 INCHES AWAY FROM ME. I gagged as I emptied the garbage into a plastic bag and almost ran down the hall to the garbage chute. Maybe I thought if I did it quick enough the whole scenario would erase from my memory. Clearly, it did not.
I was fuming. What kind of a dirty pig would leave something like that overnight? I’m a woman. I get my period. I understand it’s part of life. But it’s a part you don’t just leave out in the open. It’s like leaving a used condom in the open for your roommate to see. COME ON. Who thinks that’s okay?!
Still traumatized, I spent my morning at work writing her an email. Passive-aggressive, yes. But there was no way I could wait until the next time I saw her to let her know that I was now convinced she was raised in a barn by animals. The best part of this story is that she responded to my email, condescendingly, telling me that flushing tampons down the toilet is bad for the environment and even attached a fucking link to an article about it.
Are any of you still wondering why I hate people?