Four Idiots and a Mastiff

Rory Arnold

I didn’t realize until the moment I moved into an apartment with three of my teammates how testosterone-heavy, obnoxious, and outrageous things would actually be. For years, I feel as though I dreamt of how great a scenario where my friends and I are under one roof would turn out. After all, we’ve got no parents, no supervision, and especially no rules.

But now, I realize that the hardwood floors may as well be made out of wrestling mats, and all the walls should be padded—not for our own safety, but to protect them from my roommates’ violent and outlandish antics.

Now, I’m not saying I dislike my roommates—they’re fun-loving, outgoing, smart individuals who happen to just be driven by their own masculine-prone, ostentatious behavior that leaves me swallowing nearly an entire bottle of Aspirin in preparation of a headache I know is coming.

No matter what time of day it is, there is always music playing. It could be three in the morning and I’ll hear the monotonous beat of an EDM song through the paper thin walls on a loudspeaker. I could be on the phone with my grandma in which she’ll get a chance to hear some Satanic Death Metal through the phone, and I won’t ever hear from her again.

And while you might think that four attractive, college-aged men all living in one apartment together might help our odds with the ladies, this is not the case at all. I can’t so much as say hello to a girl without her asking for my roommate’s number or if he’s seeing anyone. Sometimes my own mom even asks if they’re still single.

The worst part about the apartment is that I’m always under the potential threat of attack. I could be making scrambled eggs and one of my roommates will find this to be an ample opportunity to start a wrestling match in the kitchen where the only thing that ends up scrambled is my brain. Some mornings I literally wake up on the wrong side of the bed because they’ve flipped my mattress over while I was sleeping on it. I have to watch TV with football pads on because I never know when someone is going to try and act like Brian Urlacher.

Don’t even get me started on the amount of traffic that flows in and out of our door. I could be in a rush to get to the bathroom, but for some reason, my roommate’s, girlfriend’s, best friend’s uncle will already have it occupied. Then, when he is finally finished (after about an hour), there’ll be no more toilet paper. The rotation to do laundry moves slower than Los Angeles traffic, and by the time I get my chance to use the washing machine, it’s broken too.

I’m almost certain that half of my student loans don’t go towards my collegiate education, but rather the absolutely obliterated cabinets and appliances that sit destructed upon and above my countertops, because, in my apartment, apparently everything is a punching bag (including myself).

And then there’s our fifth roommate: the beast. Our dog Gertrude is an English Mastiff that probably weighs more than you, and is as menacing as they come. She eats skulls for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and then goes to the bathroom all over the bedroom floor. She won’t actually attack anyone, and at times she seems like my most polite roommate, but then the garbage cans will be flipped over, the countertops will be ransacked, and I’ll enter the apartment slipping on six gallons of doggie-drool.

While this scenario isn’t how I had planned things would go, nor did I think I’d need therapy after a semester living with my best friends, I know that I’ll never have to worry about hounding my landlord for our security deposit back, because as far as I’m concerned, it never existed.