A few weeks ago, I interviewed Tara Reid for this website and we commiserated over the fact that after three months of social distancing, we both look feral. I can’t imagine she actually does, but personally, I feel I’ve never looked worse—except I’ve obviously looked worse. The transition from 7th to 8th grade was an absolute nightmare; most of my adolescent style/hair/makeup transformations were heinous, and ideally, lost to history. But it’s fun to take a silly stroll down memory lane, so I’m asking you to do the same: Do you remember your worst makeover? What was it? What did you do? Did you think it was so horrendous at the time? Are you still completely mortified? (Please don’t be mortified, this is supposed to be fun!) Drop those in the comments below. As always, the best entries really paint a picture: What led to your asymmetrical perm, and why?
But first, let’s take a look at last week’s winners. Y’all were vocal about your most nightmarish roommates, and with good reason.
BrilliantButMedicated, you win because this might be the wildest entry in Pissing Contest history? Wow?:
I’m totally doxxing myself with this story but whatever. My worst roommate inspired an episode of Law and Order SVU. She was assigned to me my freshman year of college based on some questionnaire we had to fill out during the summer. To this day I am disturbed that some computer algorithm though we would be a good match. Her parents were hyper-controlling and came to visit regularly and rifled through our all drawers searching for drugs. They tried to have a copy of her key made but fortunately since it was a dorm it had do not copy all over it and they couldn’t find anyone to do it. When they found a joint in her stuff she blamed it on me so I got yelled at by her parents, which was lovely (I did smoke plenty of weed at this point but that particular roach wasn’t mine). She didn’t like the way I arranged my stuff and would rearrange my clothing and contents of my desk drawers. She shoplifted constantly. She spat in the face of a bus driver because she didn’t have the right change and he wouldn’t let her on. She told me a story about how her dad pulled a gun on a group of her friends (I can’t remember the reason now). Fortunately for me she dropped out after 8 weeks and I never saw her again. HOWEVER, a few years later a friend called me and asked if I’d seen the NY Post that day. So I went to look and lo and behold who was on the cover but my ex-roommate because she’d tasered and kidnapped a guy, held him hostage, and branded him with a branding iron. I guess she alleged that he raped her but later recanted and said that he just was a guy who she slept with who didn’t call her back. Now, I’m inclined to believe that he probably did rape her but even if that’s the case, stalking someone for a year and kidnapping and mutilating them obviously isn’t the best course of action. In any case, a fictionalized version of the story appeared in a season 12 episode of SVU and I’m very glad that I only had to live with her for a short time because we were often at each other’s throats and I was already justifiably scared of her because of the bus driver incident and the story about her father pulling a gun.
Pumpkin Andy is Orange, tell me more:
She had lice and didn’t tell us until... well, you know how that all shook out. Refused to bathe during the winter months. Claimed a friendship with Meatloaf, and hung in our dorm window her dead, taxidermied pet parrot in its cage.
I-Brought-Chex-Mix, this is a horror story:
I had not one, but two roommates from hell - two bro-friends named Evan and Thomas.
I attended university in Boston. If you’re not from the States, you may not know that Boston is one of the oldest cities in our country. Row houses - called “brownstones” - are often very pretty architecturally from the outside, but on the inside, these once-beautiful homes have been carved up into apartments. This can make for some odd internal layouts. There is not likely to be air conditioning, either.
My best friend Amos and I decided to stay in the city between junior and senior year of university, rather than going home to Vermont, where we were both from. We had our eye on a lovely brownstone a few short blocks from the “T” (the Boston subway).
It, too, had been sort of haphazardly blocked out into two apartments internally, but it was a good location and in pretty good shape. Our apartment was the left half of the brownstone, with three stories of small but quaint rooms. The only large room in the place was the kitchen. Due to the way the apartment had been hastily separated from its other twin half, the kitchen was a VERY long L-shaped room with a tiny pantry on the lower part of that L. The room was almost as long as the whole house, all lined with countertop space.
We each found summer employment to pay rent, but even with our meager savings added to the pile, we still needed some roommates. Enter Amos’ friend Evan, and Evan’s friend Thomas. “Are you sure this Evan guy is a good roommate?” I asked. “Absolutely,” Amos reassured me. “I didn’t live with him in the dorms, but he’s a friend of mine. And he vouches for Thomas.”
Good enough, right?
Well, it turned out Evan and Thomas were both from extremely wealthy families in the midwest where men. did. not. clean. anything. Moms and maids - the “help” - were the ones whose job it was to clean. That gorgeous long kitchen with miles of countertop space? Disappeared under a forest of filthy scabrous dishes in a matter of days.
Literally, within days, the entire countertop was covered under a horror of food waste and dishes. I, the only woman, and Amos, the only good dude, tried vainly to keep on top of it, but we failed since we... y’know... had JOBS. Evan and Thomas didn’t. Why would they? Daddy paid.
Eventually, Amos and I retreated to our barricaded rooms. We gave up the cleaning fight in the kitchen, the main room, the upstairs... we kept our own rooms tidy and we kept the ground-floor bathroom (our bathroom) clean. The only chore the two bro-boys would deign to do was take out the trash. Amos and I occasionally make a half-hearted swipe at the filth and fill a few trash bags with their takeout containers and dirty rags.
Imagine our surprise a month or so later when the omnipresent stench in the front room got even worse. “What in the name of god is that smell?!” Amos and I tracked it to the kitchen... past the counter... to the pantry. The closed-door pantry. “Oh god. Oh no.”
Remember, this is a Boston summer. We don’t have air conditioning. The pantry was a tiny room with a tiny window. The Boston summer sun streamed in, where it lovingly touched... every single bag of garbage we’d asked the idiot brothers to throw out.
Amos and I carried every one of those bags out to the curb. The bags literally dripped maggots as we did. Evan and Thomas bailed immediately to “go get cleaning supplies”. They claimed they didn’t know that taking the trash “out” meant “outside” since the maid had always picked up the trash for them.
Amos and I ended up picking up maggots from the kitchen floor with our fingernails for several hours while Evan and Thomas were getting those darn hard-to-find cleaning supplies.
They didn’t return for eight hours. They brought back one roll of paper towels.
Amos and I spent the rest of the summer locked up in either my room or his, eating takeout - and throwing the trash out for real. We lost our deposit (of course).
And those were the worst roommates I’ve ever had.