The main thing I craved were housemates who'd leave me alone. I didn't want buddies who'd want to cook meals together and talk about our feelings. I wanted to come and go as I pleased, with housemates who'd do the same. The arrangement has worked well for the most part, though it became apparent the other night we could stand to improve our communication skills.
Saturday was a whirlwind of activity, with my ex dropping by to claim a hodge-podge of possessions decreed to him in the divorce agreement. I saw one of the housemates in passing and mentioned the situation to him before a friend dropped by to pick me up for a concert.
It wasn't until much later I realized the other housemate was in the dark. My first clue came in the form of a voicemail:
Um, where is everyone? All the cars are here, and the motorcycles, too. Something weird is going on. Call me.I didn't get the message until nearly midnight when a friend brought me home from the concert. Everyone was sound asleep by then, and after a quick tour around the house to make sure it wasn't on fire or in danger of being overtaken by poltergeists, I turned in for the evening.
The next afternoon, I came home from shopping to find the housemate in the kitchen.
"Dude," he said. "What happened?"
"What do you mean?"
"I got home from work and no one was here – not even the dog. All the cars were here though."
Before I could point out that I'd gotten a ride to the concert and the other housemate had likely taken the dog for a walk, he interrupted.
"That wasn't the weirdest part though," he said. "I went to make dinner and all the silverware was gone. Then I looked in your office and your desk was gone, but there's a new desk in there. And that cowbell over the fireplace is missing."
I wasn't sure whether to praise his observation skills or ask whether he really believed someone had broken into the house and stolen the dog, the silverware, a cowbell, and my desk (which, as he noted, the thoughtful thief had replaced with a different desk). Then he noticed the big box of silverware in my hand.
"Oh, cool," he said, reaching for the box. "It comes with ten steak knives."
I never got to explain anything else, but at least he's pleased with the new silverware.
Later that evening, I found him on the sofa drinking beer and watching television. I handed him a bowl filled with tiny slips of paper bearing the names of readers entered in Friday's blog contest. "Can you pick one?"
He dug his hand in the bowl and grabbed a slip of paper. "Rick Lipman," he read. "What's it for?"
"A contest on my blog," I replied.
"Right. I have this blog and – " I stopped myself, deciding it was probably best if he didn't know. "Enjoy your MacGyver marathon."
"Mmmph," he said, already tuning me out.
So congratulations to Rick. Send your snail mail address to tawnafenske at yahoo dot com and I'll hook you up with a signed copy of Making Waves. And super-huge thanks to the rest of you for all the wonderful suggestions and ideas on Friday's post. I owe you one!
Oh, and for the record, don't count on my housemates for ransom if you decide to kidnap me. We'll all be waiting awhile.