I have spent the last 11 months in roommate hell.
I agreed to not blog about this person while we lived together and I honored that, but I no longer live with this person and I am now going to blog about them. (oh and it feels so good!)
First, I found this person on craigslist (people say don't do it, but it is really normal in New York). They were moving to New York from a city in the Midwest and I was moving from Florida. I clearly remember the day I found their ad online. I was sitting in my apartment with my mom and my sister packing and organizing when I read the ad out loud. I remember thinking that this person and I sounded like twins. We had similiar work ethics, similar work schedules, we were both going to be new to the city, we were both bringing a cat, we were close in age, etc. I emailed them, we went back and forth, we skyped. Everything seemed legit.
I moved to New York before this person and I was subletting in Brooklyn (with amazing roommates!) and this person came to New York to visit and apartment hunt. We looked at some places and then we settled on this place. After about a month, they moved to New York and I moved from Brooklyn to Harlem.
This person moved here with all of their belongings. (Living room furniture, pots, pans, dishes, etc) They opened their stuff to me and thankfully I accepted. (I want to point out that when I first moved here I was broke. I used practically every penny to pay for the deposit on the apartment and I was barely keeping myself floating. I worked odds and ends, babysat here and there, thankfully had a Summer birthday, and finally got a regular job in August. I slept on an air mattress, moved with only two suitcases, and had nothing. I don't deny any of that, in fact I am pretty proud of where I am now in comparison to then.) At no point during the arrangement did I ever neglect my portion of roommate expenses. I bought paper towels, toilet paper, and cleaning supplies as needed.
After about a week of living together, we sat down and signed a roommate agreement. I should have known then that this year would be tough. The agreement was 3 pages long with over 20 clauses. I signed it anyway.
Then the crazy started to pour out. I was given rules to follow, a cleaning schedule to adhere to, and a constant and endless amount of notes and lists taped to my bedroom door or kitchen counter. I only wish I could share with you each and every story, but I'm saving specifics for another project. Here are some highlights:
- This person demanded eco-friendly cleaning supplies and chided my use of non eco friendly beauty products.
- This person used back handed compliments to try and be friendly.
- This person once tried to use this blog post to get me kicked out of the apartment because they assumed it was about them. (Guilty much?)
- This person hated my cat because she has claws and I refused to declaw her.
- This person made it clear that they felt teachers were lower class members of the workforce and deserved the pay we got because of our vacation schedule.
- This person really likes recycling and chose to sort through my trash and leave me notes about my items that were not properly recycled. (yes I know it's a law in NYC and I tried my best to remember)
- This person used a note left by some of my visiting friends to accuse me of theft.
- This person went bonkers for a few months when the apartment was robbed. I'm talking leaving lights on a timed switch, playing a radio when no one was home, and bringing all prized possessions with them when they left each day.
- This person completely disregarded all rules of respect between adults. There is a way you speak to another adult and it usually involves being civil, not rude.
- This person makes a ton of accusations and thinks they know all.
- This person constantly liked to remind me of how I was poor when I moved in and had to use their stuff.
- This person prefers to send rudely accusatory emails at 3 am than waiting to talk face-to-face in the morning.
- This person signed a lease with a new tenant for July 1st, when my lease wasn't over until the 31st.
- This person is honestly the worst human I have ever met.
There is almost nothing I regret about moving New York, except having wasted 11 months of my time being roommates with this person. I will, however, give them credit because I had plenty of conversation starters that began with "Guess what crazy did this week..." The entire table would listen, laugh and then feel a bit of pity before giving me a countdown of how many months I had left. It became a joke and I honestly did my best to not think about it when I was out of the apartment. When I would exit the subway station near our apartment, I would get the anxious feeling of having to talk to them, deal with another note about something I had done wrong, or maybe listen to them go on and on about something. It got so bad that I would say a little hope that there would be no lights on in the apartment when I climbed the last flight of stairs and could get a peek under the front door.
Now that I am out, I had to go and get my security deposit back from this person. I knew it wasn't going to be easy and I prepared accordingly. I had the roommate agreement, I had copies of the check I wrote them last July, and I brought along my friend who is a lawyer. (Yeah, it's that crazy!) This person handed me a ridiculous list of charges including towels that they say I stole, the cost to replace a knife block because I misused the knifes, a shelf organizer that the gave me so I assumed I could take it when I moved, etc. After arguing for close to 30 minutes on the stoop (because I wasn't allowed in the apartment, which I am assuming is because the new roommate was there and they didn't want to show their crazy just yet) we settled on an amount that I am content with. I also agreed to wait until the 5th to cash the check because they asked me to and I being a normal civil adult agreed.
I cannot even express how excited I am to almost be finished. I am so ready to cash that check Thursday and never see this person again.