March 16, 2011

College Living at its Finest

Print More

Five reasons why my house will probably be destroyed before graduation:

5. Whenever it rains (all the time), it simultaneously rains through my bathroom ceiling, through the floor and into the overhead light in the kitchen below. We are one rainstorm away from a devastating electrical fire.

4. The house’s lack of heat and insulation have made the approximately six months of Ithaca winter a pleasure. With paper-thin walls, limited storm windows and finicky radiators, I doubt I’ll survive until spring. In addition, the ancient heating system is most likely releasing deadly gasses into our rooms nightly. As I lie in bed shivering and trying to fall asleep, my heating vent sizzles, buzzes and sounds like it’s about to explode. Either that or my walls are infested with bees, which wouldn’t really surprise me.

3. A persistent layer of filth covers all surfaces of my house. Last semester’s fiascoes included the total demolition of our dining room table in a hurricane of drunkenness and a particularly blackout night for a certain roommate who decided to violently hurl full beer cans, leftover lasagna and a burrito at the living room walls. My current distress involves about a thousand styrofoam packing peanuts blanketing the living room. After getting drenched in beer over the course of this weekend’s events, they are most likely permanently pasted to the floor.

If I need to clean up after one more alcohol-fueled destructive rampage, scrub the grungy floors one more time or deal with another sink piled high with dirty dishes, I swear I’ll burn the house down myself — If I don’t have a stroke first.

2. Let’s move on to infestation. As someone who is afraid of the dark, heights and anything that moves, you can imagine the trauma I face every time I am forced to go into the basement to do my laundry. Leaky pipes, cobwebs, endless corners for pests and rodents to hide out in … You get the picture.

After battling ants and other insects throughout the house last semester, I thought the struggle was over until recently when two roommates convinced us they had seen a rat. Not just any rat; this rat was particularly sneaky. He only emerged late at night, feasting on the vast amount of trash and food waste no one bothers to clean up. I thankfully was not present for the culmination of his reign of terror, in which he ventured out from his home behind the fridge to attack in broad daylight. I shudder every time I think about it, and I’m still afraid to enter the kitchen alone.

At least we have our pet bunny to keep us safe in the future.

1. And the number one reason why my house is condemned is the proven fact that the ghost of a previous resident is currently occupying our attic and terrorizing anyone who crosses her path. We discovered A.W. within the first few weeks of moving in. She had mysteriously abandoned a large portion of her belongings in the creepy, windowless and unventilated attic. We immediately appropriated her fan and various books to adorn our living room bookshelf.

But we soon came to the logical conclusion that she had been murdered in the house. Why else would the house creak every time the wind blows? Why else would she leave strange books of poetry with cryptic personalized inscriptions? Why else would the heating vents hiss and sizzle at all hours of the night?

One night last semester, we heard an inexplicable banging coming from the attic. Terrified, we convened in the hallway and stared anxiously at the door separating us from A.W.’s wrath. After concluding that it was “probably not a person” up there and deciding that none of our friends were man enough to face the ghost/unknown danger upstairs, we armed ourselves with flashlights and climbed the rickety steps up to the attic. Well, in the interest of full disclosure, I was too freaked out to actually go up there, you know, due to my aforementioned fears of the dark and everything, but I did hover in the stairwell hyperventilating. That’s helpful, right? We technically didn’t find the ghost that night, but she’s totally up there, just waiting for us to let our guards down.

So basically, due to the filth, rodents, numerous fire hazards and an angry ghost, this house is never going to survive Senior Week. Everyone is invited to come over after graduation to help tear it down, light it on fire, whatever. There’s no way we’re getting our security deposit back anyway.

Sarah Lefsky is a senior in the College of Arts and Sciences and a senior design night editor for The Sun. She can be reached at skl54@cornell.edu. Guest Room appears periodically this semester.

Original Author: Sarah Lefsky