Hey there, Freshman!
Congratulations! You’ve finally made it to college — and in honor of this momentous occasion, you’ve no doubt come to campus armed with enough fancy throw pillows, faux fur, and gold lamé to make a bordello madam blush. The war for Best Decorated Dorm Room is on — and you, your Kate Spade-toting mama, and your BFF Paiselee are determined to take top honors.
By the time y’all work your HGTV-inspired magic on that jail cell your school tries to pass off as a dorm room, no one on Snapchat will ever guess your mattress is actually a thick piece of foam coated in heavy blue plastic, the words J.T. is a manwhore are carved into your windowsill, and, after last night’s Flying Roach Incident, an industrial-sized can of Raid now hides just behind the designer lamp on your chalk-painted, distressed, faux-vintage nightstand.
As far as the Internet is concerned, you and Paiselee are basically living like diet pill-popping princesses in your ultra-luxurious crib. You’ve posted lots of photos of the two of you hugging it out in your decadent dorm room. Dancing to Cage the Elephant in your decadent dorm room. Applying face masks to each other in your decadent dorm room. Studying (back issues of Vogue) in your decadent dorm room.
What your online followers won’t see are photos of Paiselee projectile vomiting across your decadent dorm room right after the two of you stumble home from your first frat party.
A week in to school, you’re wondering if that all-white decorating scheme isn’t as ‘lit’ as you’d thought it would be. For one thing, you and Paiselee still haven’t figured out how to turn on the Dyson, or even take it out of the box — Plus, you’re worried the cleaning products hidden away inside that darling polka-dot basket in your bathroom will spoil your manicure. Instead, you attempt to hide the vomit/red wine/makeup stains beneath all those decorative pillows and cozy throws.
One month later, Paiselee gets a Chi Omega tattoo on her ankle one jungle juice-fueled Friday night and meets Tweak, a tattoo artist with a legit ID and bottomless blue eyes. Before you can say ‘Tory Burch,’ Tweak, who’s apparently ‘between places,’ has become a constant presence on your custom-upholstered love seat.
Tweak finally moves out when Paiselee moves on to a Lamba Chi with a penchant for gingham, but not before stealing your favorite framed motivational phrase, your tufted silk pouf from Pier 1, and your autographed Ryan Gosling shower curtain. He also carves something unspeakable about Paiselee on the windowsill. Asshat.
October rolls around and after blowing your Chemistry test, you console yourself by blowing your entire monthly allowance on a slightly-used Louis Vuitton crossbody bag you found on Poshmark. You end up selling your Lucite coffee table, Cuisinart cordless teakettle, and a few more framed motivational phrases on Craigslist in order to fund your gym membership and rapidly escalating rosé habit.
By November, you and Paiselee are no longer speaking because of an argument over whose turn it is to empty what’s now known as the ‘trash corner.’ Locked in a bitter stalemate, drained rosé bottles, tampon wrappers, pizza boxes, used wax strips, Starbucks cups, Q-tips, empty salad containers, fake eyelashes, condiment packets, and Slim-Fast cans begin piling up on every available surface.
Finding a stray kitten outside the dining hall temporarily re-unites the two of you as you bond over taking kitty-cuddling selfies together. The number of likes you get totally convinces you and Paiselee to raise ‘Peppermint Schnapps’ yourselves (LOLOLOL!), and you make a hilarious midnight trip to Walmart for kitty litter, a pink scratching post, and cans of luxury cat food. Over the next few weeks, Peppermint Schnapps proceeds to pee repeatedly on your Dupioni silk bedspreads and slash your remaining decorative pillows and throws to ribbons. Kitty litter now crunches underfoot and the reeking litter box goes unchanged. You and Paiselee quit speaking again, for obvious reasons.
At last, December and the semester’s end arrive. Paiselee breaks her silence long enough to announce she’s moving into the Chi Omega house. You look around your dorm room, wondering who your roommate will be next semester, and hope to God she’s got some new string lights and throw pillows to spruce up the place — which now qualifies as a true hell hole.
Welcome to college!
Messy dorm room via Jason Wun/Flickr Creative Commons.