It was a Friday morning and I was washing my face. Home alone, I heard the door to my apartment open. A deep voice called “Giiirls?” followed by “It’s the maintenance guy!” I was pretty excited because apparently our landlords thought it was time our lights and sinks worked.

A visit from maintenance

My excitement, though, evaporated quickly. I yelled “Hello,” and the maintenance man replied by asking me if I was showering. I replied that I was just washing my face.

I sought refuge in my room as he began to do some repairs in the bathroom.

For the next 20 minutes I heard intermittent shouts of “bastard!” and “Goddamn it!” which provided a nice soundtrack for my homework. He then appeared at my doorway and asked me if I was the only one home. I said yes. This was a mistake.

He then said, “Oh good,” followed by a mock whisper, “I have to go to the bathroom.” I heard him open the bathroom window, so I turned my television louder and tried to remind myself that at least the repairs were finally getting done.


A high school reunion

My house planned a party for the night of the Ohio State game. We planned the theme and the booze beforehand – but the entertainment came as (sort of) a surprise.

I came home the night before after a day of quasi-job interviews, too much coffee and 3-inch heels to one of my housemates insisting that a guy named “Alex” who “played guitar” in a band called “Electric Playground” found her on Facebook and said his band wanted to play our house, for free – and that he knew me.

Neither Alex nor Electric Playground rang a bell. “You’re supposed to call him back,” my housemate said. I decided to take a nap instead, but she came knocking an hour later.

“Kim! That Alex guy is here! From Electric Playground.”

“I don’t know who he is!”

“You need to see him. He’s in the kitchen.”

I panicked momentarily, expecting some stranger who found my house on Facebook to greet me in the kitchen. I looked for some weaponry, just in case.

But I came upstairs only to see an old high school friend.

Things had obviously changed since we went to college. Like many kids in high school, most people only knew him by his last name.

“It’s OK,” he said to my housemate. “Kim doesn’t know me by my first name.”

So the band played. Two of the other members were also graduates of my high school; they’re now at Western Michigan University. It was like Troy High School Battle of the Bands 2004 all over again.


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