Bert To My Ernie

Tuesday, January 17, 2017 - By: Hannah C, Alex ‘19; Photo by Seo Young R, Alex '17

A great roommate relationship starts when you break the metaphorical shell of discomfort. When you first meet your roommate, they’re most likely going to be shy and awkward with glasses so you think they’re unquestionably smart. What you don’t know is that you will soon become coparents to a fish, they’ll infest your prep time with humorous stories from their past and you will soon have matching winter themed onesies to keep you warm during the long, eventful evenings that prep has to offer. 

A fish is very important in a great roommate relationship. My roommate and I, for an example, adopted Gillbert Corkery-Caldwell on September 11th, 2016. During our first week together, my roommate and I went for a walk uptown in search for a healthy, happy betta fish. The first time we were, unfortunately, unsuccessful. The second time we went to Lucky Paws Pet Supplies, there were no bettas left. Heartbrokenly shattered, we returned to our dorm and decided to try another day. Third time's the charm we thought to ourselves as we went to the pet supply store once again. Sitting in little fish bowls, were multiple little colorful bettas. We compared and analyzed the different color patterns and the look of the fanned out fins. Finally, we came to a consensus and chose Gilbert. 

A fish is a key element in not only a good roommate relationship but a great one. I believe with all my heart and soul that Gilbert has brought us closer together. So many treasurable memories; future stories are to be told that have been made with such a fragile creature.

Stories from your past are an immense way to start to understand your roommate’s strengths, weaknesses and other hidden characteristics. If your roommate starts to tell you about “This one time…” and you have plenty of homework, you should probably shut them down right then and there. If you don’t have any homework however, you might as well listen to their amusing anecdote from their childhood. My roommate started off our fantastic relationship by telling me about her grade 3 PAT. She thoroughly explained the gruesome scene of a child vomiting everywhere because of the child’s heightened stress caused by the exam. This, of course, was a hilarious story in the moment and was the gas to our flame of laughter while she dragged me into the next story of her childhood. 

Getting to know your roommate is essential to a magnificent roommate relationship. The stories provide that background information about each other that help you get a feel for what they will be like in the future when the new acquaintance bubbliness goes away. The allegory of their life and yours will build a more specific and trusting bond between you and your roommate.

A soft onesie with adorable polarbears on it is a soft and cozy is another way to bond with your roommate. Story time for my roommate and me usually takes place during prep. Shhhh! Don’t tell Ms. Mais. Prep can get kind of chilly sometimes, especially if one of you accidentally left the window open and an eerie draft is just left, removing the heat from your dorm all day. The sleek feel of the warm fabric slipping on over your chilled shoulders is enough to make anyone friends. If Beauty and the Beast had snug, winter themed onesies, they probably would have fell in love a lot faster. Onesies are a toasty and practical way to get to know your roommate. 

A relationship with your roommate is a make-it-or-break-it one. I don’t think many people recover from a shaky start. That is why I suggest that you and your roommate get a fish, Christmas themed onesies, and start to tell stories at inappropriate times like prep. 

Some may think of this essay as an essential roommate survival guide and some might think of it as some mediocre tips. However you interpret this essay, I can promise it will be beneficial to both you and your roommate. Happy dorming!

Hannah C, Alex ‘19 

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