He moves in vs. she moves in: Adventures in roommates
The first day in a new apartment is stressful for anyone who's been to college and had to meet new people. Not only is it exhausting moving your belongings, but you're also expected to make friends with your new roommates.
Moving is not just a series of tasks that we have to go through, it is a revealing rite of passage that shows the deepest social differences between the genders.
Perhaps this can best be illustrated by comparing Jed and Susan's typical first day moving in:
11 a.m. -- Jed pulls into the parking lot of Pleasant Happy View Apartments in his (what he considers brand new) 1992 Nissan Sentra, that he got from his parents when they wanted a new Explorer, and searches for apartment 24M. He is not sure if 24 is the building number or the room number, but he is sure he can figure it out with a little effort, so he drives around and looks at every building. Finally, after coming to building ZZ, he comes to the conclusion that 24 is the room number, and M is the building. After another half-hour he finds the building and parks his car in the nearest spot a half-mile away.
11 a.m. -- Susan pulls into the parking lot of Happy Crest View Hill apartments in her (what she considers old) 1992 Mazda Protoge, sees a cute boy, rolls down her window, and asks, "Where is 22GG?" The boy smiles a friendly smile and gives her intricate instructions that she thinks are way too complicated, and a half-hour later she finds the building. She parks in the nearest spot, three-quarters of a mile away.
At noon -- Jed shifts his garbage bag full of clothes and his Security Proof 500 Capacity CD case to one arm and knocks on the door of 24M. Two minutes later someone yells, "Come in!" Jed tries opening the door but it is locked. He knocks again. "Come in!" the person yells as loud as he can. "It's locked!" Jed yells back. Finally a guy in shorts and a U2 T-shirt opens the door and says in a monotone voice and no smile, "Wazzup?"
"Hey man, I'm moving in," Jed tells the emotionless person behind the door.
"Oh yeah, you need any help?" the guy in the U2 shirt asks with a yawn.
"Naw, I got it."
At noon -- Susan shifts her garbage bag full of CDs and her Super Security Proof Samsonite bag of clothing to one hand and knocks on the door of 22GG. Two seconds later the door swings open and a girl with a smile almost as big as her hair yells, "Oh my gosh, you must be moving in! I'm Heather! I'm so glad to meet you. Do you need any help with anything? I would so totally love to help."
"I would love some help. Thanks. Oh my gosh, you're so totally nice!"
3 p.m. -- Jed finishes moving in with no help, even though he needed it, because he is not about to let some punk he doesn't know help him.
3 p.m. -- Susan finishes moving in with the help of all three of her roommates. The four should have been able to move in much more quickly but they would not think of spending that much time with new people without getting to know them.
5 p.m. -- Jed watches as the other two new guys move in. One looks like a computer nerd and the other smells like B.O. He offers to help but neither of them want any. He then decides he is hungry and goes to McDonald's for a Big and Tasty value meal.
5 p.m. -- Susan learns that Heather has a boyfriend in Salt Lake that she has to commute to see every weekend. She also loves horses, and she collected the entire My Little Pony collection as a kid. Her other two roommates, Nicole and Amy, are both FHD majors and they are disgusted with boys, although they can*t wait to have kids. Nicole has had a crush on the same boy for three years and Amy has a boyfriend on a mission in Brazil. The four decide to go shopping together and they fix chicken pasta for dinner.
7 p.m. -- All the guys have moved in, set up their stereos, and gone out for fast food. They are all exhausted and converge on the living room to watch TV. One of them turns to a Jazz game and all watch in silence.
7 p.m. -- All the girls have moved in, had a delicious dinner, and they know everything about each other. They turn on the TV to watch Friends and continue to talk.
7:43 p.m. -- A shampoo commercial comes on TV and one of the guys comments, "Dude, she's hot!" Another remarks, "Wasn't she on Friends one time?" Jed responds, "Yeah, I think she was." The ice is broken by their common perception of a hot girl.
7:43 p.m. -- Amy says, "This is the one with the girl from that shampoo commercial. I hate this one!"
8 p.m -- Jed observes that none of his roommates talks too much and that they are all pretty laid back. This could be a pretty cool place to live.
8 p.m. -- Susan observes that Heather talks too much and the FHD majors are jealous of girls that are prettier than they are. But they all seem to get along and she would rather have roommates with opinions than roommates who just smile all the time. This could be a pretty cool place to live.