The dorm room is Davi 333. It is an exceptionally nice dorm room. Of course it is. It’s Davi. Davi is an exceptionally nice dorm. In fact, I would go so far as to say that Davi is, overall, the best dorm. Highest quality. Cleanest. Superior to all other dorms on campus. Perhaps even to all other dorms created throughout the existence of mankind.
One cannot talk about Davi 333 without mentioning the meme door. This is before you even go inside; a staple of the third floor of Davi, various small mammal memes plaster the wooden surface. Some cats, a couple racoons, a sloth, lots of opposums. They say things like “Why do sexy people (ME) have to suffer so much??” and “They hate to see a girlboss winning.” If you do not love that meme door to an extent far exceeding the amount recommended by any normal person, you and I simply can’t be friends.
When you walk in, the floors are wood. There are two beds, one lofted. Two desks. Two dressers. Two windows. Our windows are fantastic. When you look out of these windows, you can see a green expanse of lawn, beyond which a parade of the twinkling taillights of passing cars washes, at night, into a singular blur of red.
Over the windows subside the scourge of Davi 333: the shades. White and plasticky, they raise up and drop down fully in accordance to their own prickly will. I am unshakably convinced that some hate-filled sprite resides in these monstrosities. Like spoiled children, they only ever endeavor to do the opposite of what you want. No amount of skillful tugging, vengeful yanking, stubborn glaring or desperate pleading can convince the elastic to move the way in which one desires it to move. If you try to lower it in order to block out sunlight and take a nap? The shade only lifts up and away. You want to raise it to let in sunlight and do your work? Too bad, it adamantly refuses to lift a single inch.
On the windowsills, there are two collections of the various random objects and miscellaneous items gathered throughout half a semester. On one side, a russet apple sits, uneaten. A bruised spot, where it has fallen and thumped on the floor, squelches with mush. A fan, whose high-pitched, breathy whistling and eerie blue light certainly never prompted me to wake in the middle of the night and—thinking a person of undetermined identity was whispering in my ear—screech in terror, rests beside the apple.
One origami crane, orange, bright and folded to precision perches elegantly on the windowsill. On the other windowsill resides a matching crane, this one purple. They were both made by a floormate. They are lovely and delicate—like the patterns of finely-woven lace—and I love them.
The other windowsill contains a fat, orange pumpkin. On the top of the pumpkin’s stem, is the tip of one of those toothpick paper umbrellas that people put in cocktails, stuck like the American flag from the moon landing. It announces a presence. The umbrella is fully opened, white paper skin straining up towards the window, looking for all the world like a dandelion seed, like it wishes it could fly out and float away.
There are also lots of framed pictures.
Blue plastic frames, brown wooden frames, white frames and red frames grace my roommate’s side of the room. Smiling faces. Scowling faces. Sneezing faces. Sleeping faces. On her side, pictures are taped all across the wall, a collage collecting the friendships of a life before college. So many faces, all involved in myriad variations of the same camera poses, all with the same exuberant expressions drawn across their features. It is happy and bright and, as an introvert, makes me utterly exhausted to think about.
My roommate’s half of the room is crowded, overstuffed but organized, with everything concealed neatly in drawers, everything in its proper place. It overflows with decorative knick knacks, artfully arranged. The bed is lofted, with a dresser tucked underneath. A blue Ikea bag full of cleaning supplies parks itself beside the dresser. She brought nail clippers, three different types of tape, a minifridge, about twelve hundred pairs of shoes and a hair curler. She also brought a trash can, of which we both make good use of. A three-ring hole puncher, of which I am the primary user, graces the clutter-free top of her desk. On her bed, she folds three blankets into squares each morning, multiple pillows. A string of fairy lights glimmers overhead. It belongs in a home-decorating catalogue.
My side of the room, I admit with glee, manages to be both sparse and chaotic. It’s impressively messy. In contrast to her wall of smiling faces, my wall is blank and bare. With only clothes and books, I have managed to spread half the number of things out in such a manner as to make them appear to have twice the volume. Suitcases occupy the cavern under the bed. My closet, continuously hanging open, reveals towels and laundry. Loose papers (where did those come from?), half-dirty socks, half-read newspapers, half-completed crosswords and pencils lost weeks ago achieve complete coverage in a continuous line, over the surfaces of my dresser, desk and bed.
Davi 333 is a bit cramped. When we have friends over, talking and laughing far too late into the evening, it overheats, obliging us to wrestle with those obstinate shades in an attempt to open one of the windows. Dust crowds the corners and scratches pattern the floor. It is often stuffy, and we haven’t vacuumed once since getting here, and, well, I don’t think there’s anywhere else in the world I’d rather be.