My Roommate Story #5

Hello, welcome back to the last installment of “My Roommate Story,” in which I detail the crazy shenanigans which have happened during my stay in France this year. I’ve talked about my experiences with M, who was aggressive and gas-lit everyone, so now I’ll be recounting another crazy situation involving another one of my roommates.

A bit of context: from September to November, I lived with M, S, and C. As I said, M was the problematic one, but I got along with C and S. M and C moved out in late November after a rather-nasty dispute, which I detailed in this post. S and I remained in the apartment. We received two new roommates in December, whom I met when I returned from Germany. They were a couple: P, who was Bulgarian, and SD, his Portuguese girlfriend who worked at the nearby university. They were really nice, and we got along great. Things seemed fine with S, too, and we had a roommate meeting that month to make things clear with the apartment– cleaning and other responsibilities. It was what we needed, especially after not communicating effectively with the previous roommates, and I thought things would be better this time around.

However, as winter rolled on, it became clear that S didn’t like the couple at all, especially P, who was the token male in our apartment. No idea why, but things became tense between her and P, and I just tried to keep out of it. As long as everyone was being civil to each other, it would be fine.

I left for a long vacation in January, which meant that I wasn’t really around the apartment to see things unfold. It started with the little stuff, such as S refusing to do the dishes after she cooked, or not taking out the trash. The commons room started to get quite dirty, and SD and P ended up cleaning up after her, to their irritation. I admit, I also saw the mess during the days I was in, which bothered me, but I didn’t say anything. But it was petty of S to make such a mess, which she hadn’t done before, so I think it was a way to get back at P (and SD) because she didn’t like them, for whatever reason.

This kept going on throughout December and January. Upon returning from Prague at the end of January, I spoke to S, and she told me that she was moving out within a week– it wasn’t so surprising to me, as she’d been considering it for quite some time. At least there wouldn’t be any more awkward tension between her and P/SD.

However, it was about a week before she moved out that the tension, which had been festering for months, finally exploded. I’d just gotten back from Prague that afternoon, and it was in the evening when I heard P and S arguing in the kitchen. Thing was, there was a communication barrier between the two, as S spoke French and not so much English, and P spoke English, but not so much French– usually, SD or I had to be there to translate at times. But they were in the kitchen on their own (well, with S’s friend, but she was of no help), and that was where I heard raised voices, which quickly turned to shouting.

At first, I tried to ignore it, since I didn’t want to get into their business, but it got so bad that I went out to see just what the heck was going on. SD was also there, as she’d just gotten back from work when the situation happened, and was trying to figure it out, too. What I saw was P calmly cooking dinner on the stove as S was yelling at him, her face turning a patchy red. Apparently, she’d wanted to use the stove to cook dinner at the same time– of course, there was some miscommunication between them, as P needed two of the burners. S just needed one (there were four in total), so it was fine at first. But then, P suddenly moved her pot from one of the burners to one of the back ones, as he needed it for another pot he used to cook, and she just flipped out. Basically, she got mad that he didn’t ask her if he could move it– personally, I would be mad, too, but the way she flipped out was too much.

Any case, SD tried to be the mediator, trying to access the situation and calm S down. But then S turned to SD and blamed her for siding with P, since he was her boyfriend and all. I just stood there, like a deer in headlights, unsure just what to do and say: I didn’t want to side with anyone, as I felt both of them were at fault. S even pulled her friend, who was visiting, into the shit-show, which I found unnecessary, because it wasn’t her friend’s problem. S was definitely behaving irrationally, even calling her father to come pick her up, because she couldn’t even stand being in the same room as P.

The icing on the cake was when, in the heat of the moment, S picked up the large butcher knife on the counter and brandished it threateningly at P. Even though we knew she wasn’t going to actually attack him, it was scary enough to consider whether we should call the police (even P brought that up). “Police, my foot!” S yelled, and she stormed off, packing up a few belongings in her room, and escaping to a friend’s house for the night.

Even though I had little-to-no part in this situation, I was deeply troubled by it, as I’d thought that S was a sweet girl– we got along, but it took other roommates to really show just how crazy she could be. If anything, she was just as mad as M, and perhaps it was because of the fact that M had terrorized her when we’d all lived together that S just snapped at that moment. I really have no idea, and within the following week, S packed up all of her belongings from the apartment and moved on– she said “goodbye” to me before leaving for good, which was nice, but then again, we’d gotten along, so that was the least she did.

The nightmare was over, and I was left the sole original tenant. Within another week, two new people moved in– R and M– who were nursing students from Spain. While they aren’t perfect, they’re chill, and the situation has greatly improved since February. Seriously, it’s been a rough year in the apartment, and I’m now glad that things are much more peaceful.

…and that concludes my crazy roommate stories from this year. Rough as it was, I can say that it gives exciting stories to tell. That said, I do hope that no more drama ensues (which I doubt, since it’s almost the end of the academic year, and I’ll be returning home soon), and that future roommate situations will be smooth-sailing.

Have you got any crazy roommate stories to tell? Let me know!

— The Finicky Cynic

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