The last two or so years at my flat involved dealing with three of the most difficult personalities one should ever have to experience in roommates. Certainly, there was one in particular that stood a massive head and shoulders above the rest in terms of a truly evil and malevolent personality, the likes of which I’ve never seen before and will probably never encounter again; this dude was that bad. I wrote about the events as they happened, partly as an assurance that I had everything on record should it ever become a legal or criminal matter, and partly as a method of cleansing these assholes from my soul. I found that I actually enjoyed pounding out my frustrations on my keyboard after enduring some heinous behavior that sometimes would bring me to tears, so cruel could they be.
Though they deserve none, I’ve preserved a modicum of their privacy by using code names. However, everything I wrote about is true. I’m not sure how popular this blog will ever be. But if they are out there and learn about this, they will surely recognize themselves, and I hope they “read it and weep”, stupid fuckers.
This post shall serve as a preface, introducing the setting and the circumstances. A warning: as I wrote this, I leaned towards long, exhaustively detailed portraits and accountings, as I tried to make sense of exactly what it was that made them tick. So if I seem to go on and on, just know that it was part of a process that was good for my soul. Seriously. These posts are really effing long. Egregiously so. (More on that word later…) And now, on to THE TROIKA
Code names. Ah yes. Because we can’t be involved in libeling the poor darlings, can we? So, I give you B3, for Blond Bitch Bomber, MD, for Milquetoast Doormat, and, the First of the Worst, the King hisself, GS, for Gay Sadist.
First, the back story. I moved into this flat as a subletter after breaking up with a boyfriend. It was a kind of nasty Dude Flat, 4BR, 2BA, 4 roommates total, with broken-down, hideous furniture, most of which belonged outside or in a garage, and a perma-haze of cigarette smoke with me the only non-smoker, and the only female. But the rent was really cheap, my room was gigantic, the flat had good “bones” with Victorian bay windows and high ceilings, and the location amazing. Eventually, after about 2 years, the dudes all moved out, and I quickly got rid of all of their awful, shitty crap, and turned the place into a nicely decorated flat.
After a succession of roommates that proved temporary, one of the rooms was taken by a veritable Queen of the “Scene”, a popular and very trendy DJ and club promoter with whom I had a friendly but distant relationship and who was in a pickle for housing. She stayed for about 4 months, then moved on, and found B3 to move in. I knew B3 only in passing. She was part of the same multifarious group of, well, lets come clean, hipsters that I was a part of, but I barely knew her; really only knew of her, and we’d never talked. More about the hipster thing. I freely admit to being a super trendy, vintage clothes-loving, cool shag and bangs haircut-having music fanatic of a hipster who hung out with a large crowd of other hipsters. Sure, the term hipster is annoying; it makes me cringe, but so are the protestations of certain urban folk who clearly fit the definition, and angrily, defensively, insist that They aren’t hipsters; it’s Those Other hipsters. There’s a really angry anti-hipster movement that is apoplecticly pissed at the middle class white privilege claimed by the hipsteroisie. While I see their point, there have always been groups of educated, pop culture-immersed outsiders, middle class or not, and that anger gets very tedious after awhile.
About 5 of them were people whom I considered to be actual friends, not mere acquaintances. Within the “hipsteroisie”, there was a core of folk who were actively creative; in successful bands, promoters of clubs, DJs, artists, writers, shop, salon and restaurant owners, and fashion designers. There were very different strata of levels of education, intelligence and success. I’m not being snotty when I say that my close friends were all university educated, super-smart iconoclasts who, through their inability and lack of desire to fit in with regular society coupled with good aesthetic tastes, stood out as Cool People. Sorry, but they were, and that’s the only way I can honestly describe them.
These “upper strata” denizens worked at jobs for Really Smart People and put an incredible amount of energy in keeping up the creative side of their lives by being in touring bands, DJing at a commercially successful level, and promoting some really fun club nights. My closest buddies included a math genius/Intel engineer who was also a music polymath and in several bands, a scooter restorer who also worked at Dolby sound studios whilst DJing three nights a week and making custom posters on his own printing press, and a Biochemistry PhD who worked at Genentech literally on a cure for cancer, and whose age, which was the same as mine, and Brit nationality put him in the perfect stead to be the encyclopedic expert on the Rave Scene that he was, and who had a wicked quiver of “Losing My Edge”-esque “I was there” stories. (Sorry, but that last bit about “Losing My Edge” was really meta, no? And yeah, that’s a bit of self-conscious irony because I find the whole ‘meta’ thing to be really pretentious.)
Then there was the strata that B3, MD and GS traveled in. These were the self-styled late 20s “kids” who were perennially in their first semester of junior college, working part-time at a string of retail jobs from which they’d get fired for sloth, epic calling-in-after-two-days-of-partying, and shockingly obvious theft. (It would crack me up to watch them bring home scads of merchandise for about 6 weeks, all the time crowing about how clever they were, only to have the hammer come down again and again, time after time.) They were the consumers of the bands and clubs my buddies produced. If you talked to these “kids”, you’d find that although they had “The Look” and the druggy partying down with scary perfection, they had no real taste for the music, film, art or literature that my buddies were obsessive about.
One of the first things I noticed about B3, MD and GS was that none of them read. Amongst the three of them, there was nary a book owned. I’d tried to have “cultural” conversations with all three of the Troika–and failed miserably and spectacularly. To attempt to talk music with someone who seriously had not heard of Brian Eno is simply a fool’s game. And while being a music/film/art snob probably sounds superficial to the rest of the world who hates “hipsters” with a passion, I remain someone who is constantly updating Top 10 lists of songs, bands, albums, books, movies, and etcetera ad infinitum, and so I must admit that to that rest of the world, I am a (sigh) hipster.
Or was a hipster. Because 4 years ago, I started the long journey of dealing with a serious medical disability that radically changed my life. I no longer had the energy or really the desire to prowl “The Scene” the way I used to, and out of the 20 or so people I knew from that scene, four have remained true blue friends. The rest were mere acquaintances, and I miss them little–as they don’t miss me. That’s been one of GS’s chief insults that he loved to hurl at me: that I was a LOSER for having to largely stay at home due to my exhausting medical condition and for not hanging out with the “Cool People”, and that Nobody Liked Me Anymore. I tried explaining that the great majority of those folk, while amusing, were acquaintances whom I didn’t miss, and whom didn’t miss me, but that fell on deaf ears. There were numerous occasions when the tenuous nature of GS’s own superficial relationships with his “Cool People BFFs” left him in a lurch, but he was completely blind to this. More on that later.
So Scene Queen had B3 move in, and the era of psychological torture and heinous acts of human behavior that was The Worst Roommate Ever began.