I had severe reservations about moving into the house that my high school friend Pakistan owned. My new room had stains on the carpet that looked like a cat massacre had occurred. A penny was glued to the wall. What appeared to be a blood stain adorned the baseboard.
In the other spare room, the previous occupant had left a television, dresser, bed, small refrigerator, some clothes, a desk, computer, and a drum set. I honestly don't know what he took with him when he moved out.
Pakistan and I posted an ad on Craigslist. It read:
New roommate needed. Cheap rent. Downtown-ish location. Fully furnished if wanted.
* Buys me beer
* Cleans the house
* Buys me beer
* Plays darts with me
* Buys me beer
* Pays rent on time
* Doesn't mind ants in the dishwasher
We received a lot of responses. We got emails from women in their fifties with grown children. Old men with dogs responded. A DJ, a drug dealer, and a beautician interviewed for the room. A handwritten note on pink paper appeared in the mailbox explaining that the prospective roommate didn't have internet access but was interested in the room. We hadn't specified the address in the ad. I wasn't really down with a stalker for a roommate, and Pakistan and I agreed that he would call her and tell her that the room had already been filled.
When I asked him the next day if he had called Pink Note Chick, he said that they had talked for awhile.
"She's awesome! She's coming by tonight!"
"Seriously?" I asked.
Pink Note Chick came by, and she was fantastic. She was twenty-six, and self-proclaimed down to earth, nice, and clean. She said that she worked part-time trimming.
"Trimming?" I asked.
"Trimming," she confirmed.
I assumed that she meant trimming bushes. As in women's bushes. As in specializing in hair removal of the lady goods. Pakistan thought she meant trimming plants. I'm still unclear as to what sort of trimming she did.
After interviewing Trimmer, a cage fighter came by to see the place, and then we went to Third Street Aleworks for the kind of night that simultaneously causes me despair and wonder, destruction and brilliance: $2 Tuesdays.
A few hours later, I was tired and wanted to go home, but after Third Street Aleworks we went to Russian River Brewery to meet up with some friends. At Russian River our friends asked how the roommate search was going. We told them that Pink Note Chick was currently known as Trimmer, and that she was excellent.
"She's sweet. She's down to earth, nice, clean... said she parties a bit but not that often. She's actually really cool."
"So compared to the women in their mid-sixties, the ex-military man with crazy rabid dog eyes, and the guy with a tattoo on his forehead, this girl rocks?" one of our friends asked.
"Precisely. She may be a stalker, but she's clearly superior to our other options," I confirmed.
Pakistan looked at me afterwards with raised eyebrows and asked, "Trimmer?"
"Trimmer," I agreed with a nod. She was number one on the list of potential roommates.
After Third Street I was still tired and still wanted to go home, but we went to the 440 Club. Typically, when the word "Club" is in a name, there is some dancing involved within the establishment. The 440 Club in Santa Rosa is a dive. It was established in the 1950's and the interior decor hasn't changed, aside from the vomit-infested carpets being upgraded a few years ago. As a liquor store in front and a bar in back, the 440 always offers the potential for violence and the marginal appeal of ordering a drink at a window outside the bar.
My friends and I stood in a circle in the 440 talking, when an incoherent mess of a girl fell into us and onto our drinks. She threw her arms up in the air and screamed a slurred speech. The only sentences I was able to comprehend were, "This is MY bar. It's mine. MY bar."
She swung her arms around, knocked two drinks onto the ground, stumbled into the corner of the bar, and vomited.
The chick was Trimmer.