Surviving the Trials and Tribulations of University, Op. 3, No. 1 "Moving Off-Campus"

Friday, September 30, 2011 at 6:12 PM
After three years (three years?!) of living in a university residence, I finally decided to move off-campus with some friends. Yes, I am a bit of a late bloomer in that regard, but I would also like to blame the ridiculously tiny university town I live in. The competition to find housing is stupid. People sign leases at the end of September or the beginning of October of the year BEFORE they want to move into the place. Seriously. This really sucks because most people have only been at school for a month and don’t know what they plan to do yet in the following year. I think I once suggested that everyone should simply abstain from signing leases until March to make it a fair game. But nobody wants to be left without housing. Alas.

                The most common reaction I got when I told others that I was moving in with four other people was definitely some form of cringe. A house with FIVE university students! Impossible! How could the world support that? Well, if this town turns into the site of a massive crater, then you know it couldn’t.
To be honest, though, my first month in this house has been fairly uneventful. I’m going to credit my mad roommate-finding skills.

Formula for finding a Set of Good Roommates:
1.     1.  Make sure each person is reasonably self-reliant, but willing to cooperate and be considerate with others.
2.     2.  Find people who enjoy spending some time alone. (read: random people aren’t going to be walking in and out of your house ALL the time)
3.     3.  Get some nerds. Seriously. They tend to come with a decent stockpile of movies to watch, create many moments of hilarity and intense discussion, and/or keep people from getting too full of themselves (unless all the residents are the same type of nerd...).
4.     4.  Find one person who is willing to share his/her maple syrup and juice packs.
5.     5.  Find another person who will steal some of the maple syrup and juice packs and then replace them all with a bigger set of maple syrup and juice packs.
6.     6.  No couples. No drama. No drama. NO DRAMAAAAAAAAAA.

7.     7.  People who have taken the course you’re taking.
8.     8.  Anyone willing to take a bribe.
9.     9.  Tea.
10  10. Someone with a truck who can move furniture.

Lessons I’ve learnt in the kitchen:
1.     1.  Do the dishes immediately after cooking (or while you’re cooking, too). Because dirty dishes suck and should not be allowed to exist any longer than absolutely necessary.

2.     2.  If you don’t have money for groceries and are going to survive on three things in your fridge, make sure one of those things is a root veggie. Potatoes, carrots, sweet potatoes, etc. So useful and so easy to cook. Incidentally, sweet potatoes and jam are really yummy (different jams taste better, btw).

3.     3.  Onions make everything better.
4.     4.  Peppers are surprisingly versatile.
5.     5.  Spices are your best friend, unless you like a monotonous diet.

6.     6.  If you’re going to resort to using pre-packaged/frozen food like KD or pizza, make it taste better. For example, many (*cough-cheap-cough*) frozen pizzas tend to be of the boring pepperoni/generic meat type. Add your own ingredients to make them taste better!

And as we move into the notorious month of midterms, I leave you with a video a friend shared with me the other day. Remember, folks: humour is the best tool for survival.