Re: Hello Roomie

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I filled out a paper profile. They wanted to know how loud/quiet you were as well as what kind of music you liked.

I put medium noise wise. They wanted to know who was really quiet so that they could put them in Mass Hall over the President's office.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:30 PM
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Dorms. Dorms are weird. Never lived in one, myself. I got to pick a roommate out of three dozen other people I'd just met, but at least we got to negotiate and discuss in person.


Posted by: Nathan Williams | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:32 PM
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Every assigned roommate I've ever had was assigned through a process that involved answering a few questions about living habits. It started with paper forms, then moved on to part of the web application.


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:39 PM
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I'll skip reading the Jezebel post on this. It strikes me that the cyber-matching business is most interesting as a reflection of the idea that we can quantify ourselves. At age 17.

My freshman roommates (2) turned out to be wonderful women: we grew together, actually. We were roommates for the full 4 years, though in a more flexible (coop-like) situation for the remaining 3 years. I very much doubt we'd have been together had we filled out matching forms for the purpose.

Hey, my freshman roommate had me reading Anais Nin within 6 months. The other roommate forced me to learn how to use a knife and fork properly. That can't be all bad. (Shut up.)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:42 PM
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I had two dorm roommates in college, the first time around. I joined in the middle of the year, and I had to live on campus, so I ended up taking the second spot in somebody's single, a recipe for bonding. My first roommate, who preferred to be known as Ducky, had covered all the walls with Joe Boxer ads cut out of magazines. I think I scared him when, one night, I came back home with my head shaved. At the time, I wore army pants and a kung fu jacket pretty much every day. We had very little in common along a remarkable number of vectors. I moved, desperately, and ended up in a suite full of very, very young-seeming (I mean, I was 19, but you know, college) freshman role-playing geeks, who I think looked up to me because I knew a guy who had written a Star Wars RPG sourcebook, and used to buy me beer, but who I kinda treated like shit. My roommate in that suite also had a stupid nickname.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:45 PM
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My first roommate in college was also an only child. You can imagine how well that turned out.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:50 PM
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I was asked to fill out a paper form, but ended up in a single my first (and second and third) years; the roommate I had my last year was of my own choosing.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:50 PM
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The U of C's roommate matching strategy seemed a little creepy when I arrived at the dorm and my roommate and I started unpacking exactly the same books.


Posted by: essear | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:50 PM
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8: That seems like kind of a bummer. By the time you're 25, in grad school, okay. But for undergrad? Sheesh.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:56 PM
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1.last: One hopes they've gotten better at that than they were in the pre-interweb days.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 6:57 PM
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2: Same coop, same experience. It worked out fine my freshman year, but got ugly my sophomore year -- there were too many people who refused to live with each other, and nobody would give in. Room Lottery took about six hours and was an unhappy experience.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:03 PM
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My freshman roommate and I were both just over 6 feet tall, similar build, same shade and length of brown hair, both wore glasses. This was 40 years ago, the 2 black guys on the hall swore that they couldn't tell us apart.


Posted by: Middle Aged Man | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:06 PM
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2, 11: You picked roommates for freshman year? Interesting. At my alma mater one did so for subsequent years, though there were constraints. The lottery system worked okay if people made agreements in advance and/or traded numbers in order to make it work out.

My 3 years after the freshman one were in a coop-like house, and there wasn't a lot of competition to live there; chiefly competition over which room in the house you got. (This all makes me smile quite a bit. We negotiated these things with one another. Like: Look, my very good friend, you had a corner room last year, and if you freakin' take a corner room again this year just because you have a lower lottery number, you're an ass and everybody knows it. Give it up, let someone else breathe, you take one of the dinkier rooms that only has one window, 'kay?)


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:13 PM
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Huh, the times I did have roommates who could've introduced me to the ways of the wider world, I managed to avoid them. At Statewide Nerd Camp or whatever we were calling it earlier, I had a roommate from small town Kentucky. The first thing he unpacked was his bible. Now, granted, I was surrounded by these people anyway, so you could say it wasn't such a missed opportunity, but I dunno. I heard him listening to Hank Williams Jr. and immediately ran off to find people with whom to make fun of him. In retrospect, pretty goddamn lame of me. (Half-hearted defense: when you grow up in the south, country music can feel like the music of oppression.)

I guess all I'm saying is the dorm room isn't necessarily where the world gets wide so it probably isn't that big a deal. I still managed to have some astonishingly earnest conversations there. Just not at lights-out with Mr. There's a Tear in my Beer.


Posted by: Mister Smearcase | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:16 PM
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the dorm room isn't necessarily where the world gets wide

Yeah, understood.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:28 PM
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My roommate and I looked freakishly alike but beyond that really had nothing in common. Also, since I was always at the far end of the liberal spectrum at my university, I was forced to grow to the right (which, to my way of thinking, is not necessarily a bad thing so long as you don't end up actually permanently inhabiting that space, and I didn't), and was not introduced to great literature or anything else like that (unless you could the Bible, but, well, I guess even not that since I'd already read it).


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:38 PM
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count, not could

I am dreadfully tired.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:38 PM
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13: It was complicated -- the house had some singles, but mostly doubles. Room Lottery, everyone drew cards, and picked rooms high card first: some people actually wanted doubles and had a roommate picked, so whichever one of the pair drew the higher card called their preferred room. But lots of people wanted singles, and had various roommate contingency plans depending on who was left after the singles were full. My sophomore year, the women left over after the singles were full could not be paired off (largely because this one dude was either dating or cheating on his girlfriend with most of them). Someone had to give up the single they'd drawn to break the deadlock.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:39 PM
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I don't remember if there were questions to be filled out when I went to college, but somehow the process matched me up with a 6'5" linebacker who was pretty much my opposite in every discernable way. Luckily, we got along great, and when he said, as he often did, "Remember, I can kill you at any time," he was generally joking.

(He was awesome to bring to concerts. I remember coming late to some show on campus [They Might Be Giants? Maybe?] and having to try to find my friends at the front, and observing the seething mass of annoying mosh pit that stopped dead when it hit JP. It was much more pleasant to watch the show in his lee.)


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:42 PM
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|| In me me me related news, I'm going to be in New York tomorrow afternoon and evening. If anyone's interested in grabbing a bite to eat or something, shoot me an email or some other form of communication! |>


Posted by: emdash | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:46 PM
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My freshman roommate, who I got by random assignment after the guy I as was going to room with joined a frat, turned-up at my parent's house when they had carpenter ants. In the process of killing the ants, he recognized my picture on the wall.


Posted by: Moby Hick | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:54 PM
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We were asked only two questions: smoking/non and single-sex/coed dorm, but my roommates and I all tolerated each other fine, and I think the expectations engendered by a serious compatibility questionnaire would just make the inevitable mismatches more frustrating.

Speaking of the start of freshman year, this Times article posted by NPH at the very end of the Parenthood thread should be read if it was missed. The parental separation anxiety it chronicles would be borderline embarrassing in a preschool context.

14: You did exactly the right thing with Mr. Tear in My Beer.


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 7:56 PM
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18: Sounds more or less similar to the complexity of negotiations that went on in my house, which was a house of singles -- 12 rooms, but each room rather different from the others; a third floor corner room (slanted ceiling) might be considered better than a second floor center room with a single window, or it might not be. First floor corner room was the most spacious, but people would be less likely to visit down there; which you might prefer. And so on.

And yeah, there were, um, careful issues to do with just who'd been sleeping with whom, or had tried and failed to do so, etc. Then there were a few people who just staked out what they considered to be *their* room, year after year, and that was that. Don't even try for their room, or all hell will break loose.

(This really does make me laugh quite a bit.)

There was a fair amount of visiting in the evenings in that house. Even if you didn't have a corner room, chances are a couple of people might be hanging out in someone's room which happened to be more spacious. If a door was open, you could pop your head in.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:03 PM
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I'm still good friends with the roommate I got potluck my first year. We ended up staying in the same dorm room together for second year, and then a couple of years later were roommates again (in a house) for a couple of years. Great guy.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:17 PM
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it might be a good thing for 18-year-olds to get used to getting along with people they wouldn't necessarily choose for themselves.

I'm not convinced. As adults, none of us feel the necessity to socialize with people with whom we have nothing in common. Most of us, I'd hazard to guess, treat people we find disagreeable with some minimal level of civility and otherwise leave them alone. I don't know why 18-year-olds shouldn't have the same opportunities.

(I was either already friends with my roommates or if I wasn't, I was mostly indifferent to them, my first freshman roommate, a guy who did nothing but smoke lots of weed and listen to lots of Lynyrd Skynrd and the Dixie Dregs, being the exception. In that case, I moved a month into the first semester and he flunked out before he start of the second.)


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:21 PM
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I've said this here before, but my freshman roommate was roundly considered to be one of the most intolerably shrieky and annoying humans on our campus. She moved out on me within a couple of weeks.
CA, in his exceedingly brief and non-consensual* sojourn with the Big 10, was housed in a suite with 3 members of the U of Iowa's basketball team. I like to think that one of them was BJ Armstrong (fans self).

*He was too oi! for college, but as he had earlier taken the ACT, his father filled out and signed the application for him. CA reluctantly agreed to go, thinking "it has to be better than high school." It apparently wasn't, and he left IA with some very expensive habits and two steps ahead of the law a couple months later.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:27 PM
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My freshman year roommate covered the walls with pictures from an SI swimsuit calendar and had a keg party in our room (we just had single rooms in those ancient days, no suites) on the third day of school.

He's now a full time, stay-at-home dad. Turned out to be a swell guy.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:34 PM
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||
Via a commenter at EotAW, this is one great LBJ presidential recording. It starts pretty slow (although still great to think of him making the call from the White House), but towards the middle he gets rather specific in describing how to fit it in a sensitive area. Confirms about everything you thought about what LBJ was really like.
|>


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:35 PM
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I like to think that one of them was BJ Armstrong (fans self).

I had no idea you had a thing for 12-year-old boys.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:36 PM
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27: ASA? We love him!


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:36 PM
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29: ?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:37 PM
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30: Yup.


Posted by: rob helpy-chalk | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:40 PM
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31: He's a total babyface.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:42 PM
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I find it amusing that in searching for evidence in support of 33, half of my original Google Images results were for the lead singer of Green Day.


Posted by: Josh | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:43 PM
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Also, one of my roommates and I got along splendidly for four years. Now he and his family live a mile or so from me and I see them about once a year, maybe. Funny, that.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:43 PM
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33: Ah! Yes! Hubba hubba. (I thought there was some similarly named Bieberling I had missed.)


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:43 PM
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28: I laughed out loud really loudly at the line about the "bunghole". Because I'm eleven. Good thing I'm home alone!


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:54 PM
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My freshman year roommate covered the walls with pictures from an SI swimsuit calendar and had a keg party in our room (we just had single rooms in those ancient days, no suites) on the third day of school.

Mm. Apparently I was very lucky, or girls just weren't that way in that place at that time. My proper-fork using roommate had come from the Brearly school, and the Anais Nin-reading roommate was from Montreal and smoked ... not Gitanes, but something like them. Shocking! At age 17! While I had a boyfriend with an earring, who was in a band, playing flute and guitar (and singing). It's amazing we wound up getting along, not without some significant bumps early on. Moving to the coop-like house helped a great deal; we'd almost broken up.

There was one girl on our dorm room floor who gave me, as a Secret Santa gift that freshman year, an issue of Playgirl magazine. That was kind of gross.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 8:56 PM
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My freshman roommate was a football player. We had little in common, but got along fine. (It helped that it was an unusually large room.) I got along well enough with most of the other people on my hall that year to end up living with various subsets of them in different contexts for the rest of college.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 9:01 PM
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Parsimon dated Ian Anderson?


Posted by: Mr. Blandings | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 9:03 PM
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40: Or Ron Burgundy.


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 9:05 PM
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It helped that it was an unusually large room.

Because he was the nose guard?


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 9:05 PM
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37: At the end he mentions that he has to run out to a funeral--tape date is supposedly 8/9/64 and have not figured out whose funeral it might have been.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 9:06 PM
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my college had nearly all doubles & nearly everyone wanted a single, and it was pretty much all lottery for rooms, though starting sophomore yr, one could choose roommates. found out as sophomore that there was a 'queer exception' such that if roommate (a) came out, and room mate (b) freaked out; room mate (a) got a single for the rest of her collegiate time. As I did, when my sophomore yr room mate joined ROTC just as I was coming out...
could never understand why more people didn't know & take advantage of this system. it's not like much else was there kept semit-secret...


Posted by: queeracademic | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 9:06 PM
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My first-year roommate was the archetypal U.Va. fratboy aspirant. The comeuppance came when he somehow screwed up the rush process and didn't get a bid from any frats. He'd probably dreamed of being in a frat since he was, like, twelve.

He ended up backing into one second year through some minor fall-rush thing they do. Still: it was hilarious.

My favorite story was the time he bought a new, pristine white U.Va. hat from the bookstore and proceeded to spend the afternoon rubbing on the carpet, in the dirt, fraying the brim. You know, for that worn-whitehat look. I shit. You. Not.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 9:11 PM
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Because he was the nose guard?

He was actually the kicker, although you wouldn't know it to look at him.


Posted by: teofilo | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 9:14 PM
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40: Not exactly, though he could play Tull songs. More like Geddy Lee, vocally.


Posted by: parsimon | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 9:15 PM
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20: Give me a call! Or I will call you or something. That would be nice!


Posted by: A White Bear | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 10:44 PM
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his exceedingly brief and non-consensual* sojourn with the Big 10'

A high school buddy's parents drove from WA to Evanston to drop him off for the beginning of freshman year and he beat them home. Unfortunately his girlfriend broke up with him not long after anyway.


Posted by: Not Prince Hamlet | Link to this comment | 08-23-10 11:04 PM
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He was too oi! for college

Anti-semite.

Also, I think that room-mate posts, like healthcare posts, are really bait for us oriatlanteans to pop up and say "you had to share rooms at university? How uncivilised!"


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:00 AM
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but somehow the process matched me up with a 6'5" linebacker who was pretty much my opposite in every discernable way.

emdash is Michael Doonesbury IRL?


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:22 AM
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It's weird. We had dorms at my boarding school, obviously, but the thought of sharing a room with a stranger at university seems really odd to me. It's something that I've always been curious about in the US, partly because of the roommate/flatmate terminological confusion. When people talk about their roommates I never know (unless I ask) whether they mean flatmate or actual roommates. What proportion of people who are living in student accomodation in the US (and aren't couples) share a room?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:47 AM
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Just to prove ajay's point.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:47 AM
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Glasgow had, I think, a couple of aging halls of residence that had a few shared rooms [a tiny percentage of the total across the Uni]. Some people seemed to seek them out [mostly girls of a certain type].* The idea horrified me then and horrifies me now.

I once went home from an evening in a club, somewhat the worse for drink, with a girl I'd met, and quite a long while into our little seduction scene I looked over and realized that her room had another occupant, who was awake, ...

* by which I mean a sort of Enid Blyton-y jolly hockysticks type, rather than anything salacious.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 3:13 AM
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Some of the London halls of residence had sets of two: a sort of micro-flat with two bedrooms and a very small shared bathroom. I knew some people who preferred to both sleep in one of the rooms and use the other as a shared living room. Works OK, I suppose.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 3:35 AM
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One male friend of mine was in one of the few shared rooms in his hall of residence. He didn't mind. The room was huge, and both he and his room-mate had girlfriends with private rooms, so they didn't have any problems finding private space. I think they were only ever in the room at the same time a couple of times a week. However, he'd been to private (i.e. public) school and was probably more inured to that sort of thing than I'd be.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 3:40 AM
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As a freshman at Cal, I shared a 11x14 room. With my best friend from high school. Our girlfriends were best friends too. You could make a sitcom out of it!


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 3:59 AM
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Wow. You could probably get more privacy and personal space on a submarine.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 4:03 AM
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when my mom and I got off the train from DC to go to columbia, we found my roommate crying in the fetal position on a bare mattress. she was from a small town in oregon and had never been on the east coast before. maybe never anywhere but oregon and california. her small town was so thoroughly baptist that they didn't have school dances, footloose-style. she had sent all her stuff way early, and because of the first-in last-out nature of the world couldn't claim any of it. my mom and I had more sensibly decided we'd just buy things in ny, so we took her out shopping with us and set her up. she was a real sweetheart. she used to get me onto the phone to argue with her dad about the bible, since I was reading it in intro greek. naturally as soon as I could I moved out to live with a boyfriend, but she stayed in the dorms all four years.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 4:13 AM
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I had suitemates my Freshman year. First semester I had a single within the suite. Second semester I shared. I had a suite with a roomate (bedroom and sitting room) my sophomore and Junior year. Same roommate, but then we had a huge and awful falling out. (We did talk at our 10th reunion, but I and one of our mutual friends didn't know whether it would happen.) My particular House did not have singles, but Seniors all got a single within a suite.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 4:18 AM
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52: In student accomodation, we weren't supposed to be couples. As a practical matter, it happened all the time, but I read about a couple who got married in their Juniro year. They weren't allowed to get a room in the House and had to move into graduate student apartments.


Posted by: Bostoniangirl | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 4:20 AM
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Wow. Sweet Jesus. I hate the idea to of being responsible for other students. (That's about it; I mean, I hate to say it. My flatmate hero-worships The Cult of the Dead Cow & yeah.)

It is rather odd.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 4:30 AM
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& yeah, I mean, I pretend that slashdot is a real confusion to me in order that I don't have to take any responsibility.


Posted by: Keir | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 4:34 AM
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What proportion of people who are living in student accomodation in the US (and aren't couples) share a room?

In my university all first years lived in doubles. There were no singles in the freshman dorms and you were required to live in the dorms your first three years, though by your third year you generally had a single. Large institutional type coed bathrooms as well, something which rather freaked out some of the more conservative parents. Sex was dealt with either through sexiling (daytime) or a 'you pretend I'm asleep and oblivious, I pretend you're just cuddling' (doesn't everybody cuddle in a sixty nine position?). I got along fine with my roommate, but my next door neighbours hated each other from the start - two black girls, one a standard UMC kid with mostly white friends from a tony NYC suburb with manager/doctor parents, and the other from the DC projects who was very religious.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 4:58 AM
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I suppose it shouldn't come as a surprise that I ignored had different roommates every year of college. I've long since blocked my freshman year roommates on FB.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 5:15 AM
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In student accomodation, we weren't supposed to be couples

Why?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 5:34 AM
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We're Americans. Having sex is wrong.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 5:37 AM
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67: Or should at least be hedged about with awkwardness, worry and guilt, right?

We used to get the occasional American student over on a year's exchange study. For the first month or so they wandered around the place with the expression of, to quote Douglas Adams, "someone who believed himself to have been blind from birth, only to discover one day that he had merely been wearing too large a hat". I always attributed this to their being allowed into the pubs at the age of 19, but I suppose having a room to themselves might have had a lot to do with it too.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 5:43 AM
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Actually it's really part of the nefarious liberal plot to discourage stable relationships in favour of the hook-up culture(TM)


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 5:45 AM
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We've talked about this before, but there's a particularly odd facet of the American social approach to young adults having sex. Even for people who don't think there's anything exceptionable about unmarried adults having sex, the age under which you're too young to appropriately be having sex is, in most people's minds, very badly defined, much older than most people do start having sex, and much older than most people expect young adults to actually have started having sex. So anything that would make it easy and accepted for a couple of nineteen or twenty-year-olds at college to be having sex is unseemly, despite the fact that no one expects most nineteen year olds to be virgins.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 5:59 AM
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At my college I think there was a tension between dealing with the concerns of the (on average) relatively conservative parents and an admin attitude which amounted to: have fun, unlimited free condoms are available and keep the door closed if you want to drink or use drugs.


Posted by: teraz kurwa my | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:10 AM
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To the OP, yeah, it's not always possible to choose who you interact with. As adults, though, it is almost always possible to choose who you live with -- and especially who you share a room with.


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:14 AM
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My flatmate hero-worships The Cult of the Dead Cow & yeah.

Heh.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:20 AM
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70, 71: I am old enough now to be curious about the thinking of university administrators. I imagine a lot of "of course we we knew that you and your little buddies were shooting soda cans off your windowsills with pellet guns/setting off firecrackers in the dining hall/circulating lists of the ten hottest girls*, but we had budgets to deal with."

* For the avoidance of doubt, I did not participate in that one.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:21 AM
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Isn't it a truism that the ubiquity of roommates in college housing is a way to prepare you for prison?


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:27 AM
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75: You're thinking of the dormitories of Eton/equivalent American prep schools, I think.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:31 AM
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75: Heh. Rory went to a summer camp this year on a University campus. Her very first impression upon entering the dorm was: "It's like a prison cell, but with a desk."


Posted by: Di Kotimy | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:36 AM
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74: but you did participate in the other two, then?

76: it is, IIRC, true that British POWs tended to get through the experience much better, mentally speaking, if they'd been to boarding school first.

Flashman mentions this: he keeps on reflecting that his captivity/torture/knowledge of imminent execution isn't nearly as bad as being bullied at Rugby.

70: I think it's the tension between "what age do I think it's OK for most young adults to start" and "what age do I think that my own precious unique princess should start".


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:38 AM
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"what age do I think that my own precious unique princess should start"

Apropos spoken by parent or creepy stalker!


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:40 AM
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80

78.1: I'm not on trial here.


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:40 AM
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81

Either you have terrific prison cells or horrible dorm rooms. I know which way I'm going to bet.

(I had two rooms to myself one year at university, but! the bedroom window wouldn't shut. All year. Mmm, character building.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:40 AM
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82

79: I will respond, Flippanter-like, by noting that I am not a parent.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 6:45 AM
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83

||

Anyone know how to get an article that's behind the London Sunday Times paywall? I'd really like to link to one that I saw excerpted in hard copy.

|>


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:00 AM
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84

83: Go to King's Cross Railway Station; at Platform 9 ¾, you can slip behind the paywall.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:06 AM
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85

How important is it and how much do they charge in America? I or one of the other UK commenters can get a day pass for £1 if that's cheaper. But I can't do it at the moment.


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:15 AM
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86

I can see U administrators not wanting to get all tied up in the stability of 19 year old couples.


Posted by: CharleyCarp | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:16 AM
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87

I just wanted to post it on the front page. Just an interesting story - the one on the Afghan National Police from July 21.

It looks like the 1 pound rate is available to all. Maybe I'll pay up and try to excerpt key parts to whet everyone's appetite.

(It's the first day of school, so it might take me awhile to find a spare minute.)


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:22 AM
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I can see U administrators not wanting to get all tied up in the stability of 19 year old couples.

If one can believe the two or three (does Possession count?) novels of academia that one has read, the tribulations of 19-year-olds might be a welcome respite from the squabbling resentments and importunate demands of their hooded elders. [Henry Kissinger quote about viciousness and pettiness goes here.]


Posted by: Flippanter | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:23 AM
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87: do you mean this one?

http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/world/asia/article6721176.ece


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:29 AM
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90

62: You realize that means your roommate hero-worships our very own Sifu.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:31 AM
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91

Do you get access to the crossword with the day pass?


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:34 AM
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89: No, it's one called "Afghan police: all's fair in love and war" by Christina Lamb.


Posted by: heebie-geebie | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:35 AM
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Sorry. Now I look at it, that one's from July 21 last year.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:45 AM
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My first roommate, who preferred to be known as Ducky

Sifu went to college in a John Hughes movie?


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:54 AM
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78.last: You know, I don't think so. I know more parents who are "Personally, whatever my kids feel ready for is all right, but of course you can't expect a college to allow male and female students to share rooms as a general rule, they're too young.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:57 AM
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Hit post too early, that sentence should have ended: than people who generally think that college students having sex is okay but want their own children sheltered from it.


Posted by: LizardBreath | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:58 AM
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he left IA with some very expensive habits and two steps ahead of the law a couple months later

CA went to college in a John Cassavetes movie?

(Cassavetes isn't the obvious choice here, but he leapt into my head for some reason, so I went with it.)


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:01 AM
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97: or possibly an Evelyn Waugh novel. (For this to be true, CA should now be living a life of genteel decay somewhere slightly backward, with colourful natives: Italy, perhaps, or East Africa, or South Carolina.)


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:10 AM
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98: These days, he's an only mildly wanton philosophy professor in the American midwest. Does that work?


Posted by: oudemia | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:13 AM
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I'll tell you who works, Kobe, that's who.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:16 AM
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Depends if he's wanton and professes philosophy (possibly Waughlike, but more David Lodgesque) or just professes wanton philosophy (merely sad).


Posted by: chris y | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:17 AM
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Wonton philosophy: more up-market version of fortune cookies.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:18 AM
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100: You just sit around all day waiting for the 99th comment, don't you?


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:18 AM
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103: Sometimes I stand to stretch my legs. I usually take a lunch break, too.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:21 AM
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When life gives you dumplings, make wonton soup.


Posted by: Ginger Yellow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:30 AM
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||
If any of you academics (or others) fancy yourselves economists or policy experts, there's an anti-deficit hawk statement going around looking for signers. Already signed on are Bob Borosage, Barbara Ehrenreich, Robert Reich, Jaime Galbraith & a couple hundred others.

The pitch begins thusly:

Dear friend, Last week, Paul Krugman warned in his colum, Appeasing the Bond Gods, that "the policy elite are making a strange argument in demanding that we engage in human sacrifices (continued high levels of unemployment and budget cuts) to appease the anger of invisible gods" (the bond markets).
We invite the head of your organization to join with over 300 economists to make a clear response to this policy elite: Don't Kill Growth and Jobs in the Name of Deficit Reduction.

E-mail me at mypseud at geemail if you want to take a look at the full statement and list of signers.

|>


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:31 AM
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Jaime Galbraith

BURNS: Get me J.K. Galbraith!
SMITHERS: He's busy, sir.
BURNS: Then get me his non-union Mexican equivalent!


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:42 AM
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103, 104: Given that for a big chunk of the recent P'burgh mini-meetup, Stanley, Moby and I comprised 3/4 of the attendees, you can imagine the serious and cerebral nature of the discussion. Admittedly, Cosma brought us down to his level from time to time.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 9:15 AM
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should now be living a life of genteel decay somewhere slightly backward, with colourful natives: Italy, perhaps, or East Africa, or South Carolina.

Well, it isn't all it's cracked up to be.


Posted by: Populuxe | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 9:35 AM
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I'd pretty sure I'd take the chance to live in Italy like a shot. Especially if someone could arrange a little lake-side villa, or ancient townhouse in some nice city.


Posted by: nattarGcM ttaM | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 9:45 AM
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When I went to college, as a very earnest young radical, there was some vague matching function, such that I got placed with another big, introverted guy. Except that he was a small-town pothead hippie. We exchanged a letter or two before the start of school, and I think I might have freaked him out a bit. The friends we made were complete opposites too -- he wound up spending all his time with two grumpy girls, one from Rancho Cucamonga and the other from New Jersey I believe, who absolutely detested me. So it wasn't a surprise when he moved to the smoking/"incense" wing of the dorm to live with my main rival for the affections of the girl on whom I had a crush. I got bumped into a room with a 26 year-old ex-Coast Guard weightlifter, who had a long-term girlfriend that he had to hide his snus consumption from. It could have been worse. Being 26, the second roomie was one of the few people in the dorm allowed to store alcohol in his room. Of course, I didn't really drink at that point, so the benefit was marginal.

After I left, the first roommate burned out his room by leaving a candle burning in a Dixie Cup on top of his computer, and getting stoned. No one was hurt, but it did drive 350 people into the cold Wisc. night in the middle of February. What a jackass.


Posted by: | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 9:46 AM
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Whoops, that was me.


Posted by: Natilo Paennim | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 9:47 AM
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108: Last night, just as we were sitting down to dinner, I made some stupid pun joke, and Witt said something along the lines of "Ah, so you're like this in person, too."


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 10:03 AM
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St. Andrews had a fair number of doubles; I didn't realize it was the norm for British schools to have singles. (I did cherish mine. It was lovely.)

Ah, so you're like this in person, too."

Aren't we all?


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 11:19 AM
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Well, it's very cold in St Andrews. You need to be able to share body heat.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 11:38 AM
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114: Except those of us who are really dogs.


Posted by: Sir Kraab | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 11:57 AM
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116: Who knew?


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 12:03 PM
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117: Who's a good boy?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 12:05 PM
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Everything gives Sir Kraab paws.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 12:09 PM
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Stanley the wag.


Posted by: JP Stormcrow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 12:14 PM
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115: True. I loved being able to use my windowsill as a fridge. But they overheated the rooms, at least in the modern halls.


Posted by: Parenthetical | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 12:16 PM
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I'm still friends with my DS roommates. When I transferred, I was put with another incoming transfer in a suite - we each had our own small room with a common room. I got in late to find that he had plastered the common room walls with giant NASA photos of astronauts.

I didn't have all that much to add to the decor. It was a little presumptuous, but, hey, astronauts! Made for good conversations when guests came over, too.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 1:19 PM
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I'm still friends with my DS roommates

Is "DS" your codeword for "black", or "Canadian"?


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 1:51 PM
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123: Nah, dude. Nintendo DS. He's referring to his days as a gamer.


Posted by: Stanley | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 1:54 PM
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124: Nintendo made a game console specifically targetted at blacks and Canadians? That's some interesting niche marketing there.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 1:58 PM
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Sorry. D/eep Spr/ings, the small all-male college set on a cattle ranch, from which I transferred after two years.


Posted by: k-sky | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:08 PM
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Especially if someone could arrange a little lake-side villa, or ancient townhouse in some nice city.

Hm, interesting. Were I offered the chance to live in Italy I'd hold out for a squalid efficiency.


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:17 PM
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My window was open for much of my senior year of college (the first year out of the dorms - $240 per month - decrepit house). Who knew that even if you close the bottom sash, the top sash might still be open near the ceiling?! Took me until November to figure that out.


Posted by: Cryptic ned | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:17 PM
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I never had a roomate in college, because (due to sending in my forms late) I was placed in the only all-men's dorm on campus, which had all singles. When I learned of my placement in the mail before showing up on campus, I was freaked out. But then it turned out that almost everyone else in the dorm were the kind of people who had also forgotten to/procrastinated in sending in their forms. We slackers had a great time together.

So my advice is to just forget to do the test and see which slacker they match you up with.


Posted by: Robert Halford | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:28 PM
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Congratulations, Rob!


Posted by: nosflow | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:34 PM
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I never had a roomate in college because I'm allergic to marsupials.


Posted by: M/tch M/lls | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 2:35 PM
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129: You went to college with the Afghan National Police?


Posted by: fake accent | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 7:45 PM
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132 to 131.


Posted by: Sifu Tweety | Link to this comment | 08-24-10 8:03 PM
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Were I offered the chance to live in Italy I'd hold out for a squalid efficiency.

I'm not quite sure what a squalid efficiency is but I'm guessing "peeing in the shower to save time" would count.


Posted by: ajay | Link to this comment | 08-25-10 3:17 AM
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and as it happens, italian bathrooms are disproportionately likely to have the shower go onto the floor with no division between it and the toilet or sink. so you can pee in the shower while actually peeing in the toilet.


Posted by: alameida | Link to this comment | 08-25-10 4:57 AM
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I had a friend in HS who seriously considered going to D/eep Spr/ings. It sounded crazy to me at the time. (The number 1 feature I was looking for in a college was that it have women.) Since then I've always wondered what it was like.


Posted by: Walt Someguy | Link to this comment | 08-25-10 6:19 AM
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