Columns, Opinion

HOFBERG: Should I Stay or Should I Go?

Welcome back everybody. Ready or not, school is in session.

Some of you may remember me from last semester. I’m that girl who writes rants about trivial things that irritate me. And apparently, if you piss enough people off, The Daily Free Press will offer to keep you on as one of their weekly columnists for the next semester. So, whether you liked me or not, I’m back!

For those of you who don’t know me, know this: no one is safe. Last semester, I ruffled everyone’s feathers, from pumpkin spice latte drinkers to Harry Potter super fans to Girl Scout Cookies enthusiasts. This semester, I don’t plan on pumping the brakes on my unsympathetic sass. So here we go.

This week, as many of you experienced for yourselves, was moving week in Boston, the most miserable time of year. The T is jam-packed with amateur public transportation riders who fumble with their subway tickets and cling dearly to city maps. Confused parents of incoming college freshmen crawl along Commonwealth Avenue at a sloth’s pace. U-Haul moving trucks bring traffic on almost every road in the city to a virtual standstill. The sidewalks of most residential neighborhoods pile up with trash and leftover furniture so high I wouldn’t be in the slightest bit surprised if you confused your street with the city dump. Oh and you thought you’d just furnish your new room with furniture and decorations from Target once you got here? Worst idea. You’ll learn real quickly that wrestling for hangers and laundry baskets in aisle 12 isn’t unlike fighting for discounted PlayStations at Best Buy on Black Friday. And for the many of you who relied on Craigslist to secure your new housing for the coming year, you know there’s only one thing worse than the nightmare of physically relocating and furnishing your living room: moving into an apartment with the least compatible housemates imaginable.

This year for me, as I’m sure it was for many of you, was a question of which was worse: participate in the misery that is moving to Boston over Labor Day weekend, or re-sign a lease at your current apartment with messy, sloppy, dirty roommates?

Cleanliness. It seems to me that overflowing trashcans and sticky kitchen countertops are the number one reason for disagreements in a house. It all boils down to the dishes. Every time.

Listen. I understand that as college students with demanding schedules and never-ending papers to write, many of us have adopted some lax standards in terms of cleanliness. But how about when your roommates don’t have college classes to blame for their sloppy standards of living because they are long since graduated? What’s the excuse then? To this day, I’m still at a loss as to how grown women can stand to live in a house that any visitor might confuse with a dirty frat house on Chester Street or a homeless shelter downtown. Call me crazy, but if you have time to lie in bed until 4:30 p.m. watching reruns of “The Office” on Netflix for the umpteenth time, then you have time to get up and Clorox the bathroom.

The number of times my blood reached a boiling point over the past year because of the lazy and inconsiderate living habits of my housemates made me seriously consider shelling out hundreds of dollars in moving costs, sitting in U-Haul traffic and fighting for bed sheets at Ikea, if only to spare myself from having to send one more passive-aggressive group text message to the group of girls whose favorite thing to do is leave a heaping pile of dishes in the sink for me to wash, even though we are one of the few apartments in Allston fortunate enough to have a dishwasher.

But what’s the alternative? Move into another apartment with equally disagreeable roommates who like to use their electric mixer to make whiskey cupcakes at midnight and blast nobody’s favorite Ke$ha song, “Timber,” on repeat at all hours of the day? The struggle is real, people.

At the end of my own lengthy, internal mind battle over whether to move or not, I decided to stay put. Where I am now, I am situated in an ideal location with a yard for my 30-pound cat, Lars. My rent is unreasonably low, and I have the biggest room in a house that comes with a washer and dryer.

Today, watching all the people in my neighborhood struggling to move mattresses and bookshelves into moving vans from my bedroom window was enough to convince me that I made the right choice. But I can’t promise that next week, when my house looks like it could be featured on an episode of Hoarders on A&E, I’ll be so thrilled with my decision.

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