Monday, November 01, 2010

Looking or searching for an extra roommate?

Looking or searching for an extra roommate?
  • Did your roommate perform so badly in the last quarter that his boss decided to ship him off to Timbuktu?
  • Did your roommate foolishly go find the girl of his dreams and promise to marry her soon?
  • Did your roommate get tired of the big city life and decide to home and look after his dad’s collapsing business?
  • Did your roommate think that he is going to make a pot load of cash by working abroad?
  • Are you left without a roommate and the entire rent to pay by yourself?
Come find others like you who are searching for a roommate at the next “Looking or searching for an extra roommate?” meeting at Abcd Hall on the 1st of April. Contact us at 098652xxxxx.

‘Bloody ‘ell, this is it’, I said to myself triumphantly as I finished reading the advertisment. No more scanning through the classifieds every 6 months as yet another new roommate of mine packs his bags and moves out. Usually to get married. In a couple of cases, before my new roommate could finish unpacking he had to start packing because his folks had found him a suitable match out of the blue. I’m not making this up! In fact it has reached such a stage that no longer am I breaking my head about having to settle down myself. Instead I have to keep worrying about how I am going to pay the next months rent if my possibly soon to be ex - roomie decides to do a Houdini on me. They said marriage was tough. I don’t think they were talking about the difficulty people like me have to go through each time someone decides to bite the dust.

“Gentlemen, welcome to the first ever ‘Looking or searching for an extra roommate?’ meeting in Bangalore. My name is John Smith (name has been deliberately changed to protect this persons identity) and I have created a startup - “Looking or searching for an extra roommate?” after my MBA.” I groaned internally. Not another I think I’ve hit the magic jackpot because I’ve done an MBA nut. But I had to admit his idea was good and he seemed enthusiastic enough. Wearing a rather dapper suit he did stand out though the pink tie wasn’t to my liking. But, what do I know about style anyway?

“… while doing my MBA I remember so many of my seniors telling me that they faced a tough time finding flat mates because they came and went with the speed of the batting lineup of the Indian cricket team on yet another insipid collapse. And so I thought to myself …”. Another groan. This time it isn’t a silent internal one. When will he get to the point I wonder. People sitting next to me turn and look disapprovingly.

“ …… and so all you need to do is to tick the boxes on your application form which will help us identify the sort of roommate you want. Our propriety software will then pick the best possible roommate for you. Sort of like a dating agency” My hand involuntarily smacks my head as his last sentence runs through my mind. Male roommates. Dating agency. Gulp! Is this for gays? I desperately try pushing the thought out of my head. I scan the ad again. I re - read it. I put his dating agency quote down to him being a schmuck with an MBA degree in hand.

“Being the first ever “Looking or searching for an extra roommate?” meeting, we have a special contest for the members of the audience. Whoever can come up with the best name for this startup group gets a wonderful prize”. Highly audible groan from me this time. I hate the wonderful prize gimmick. Unfortunately it was within the earshot of our hotshot MBA who turns to our direction. Using my old trick, I turn and look accusingly at the rather innocuous chap sitting next to me who in turn gets a cold stare from Johnnie boy.

“Lets have a demonstration for the benefit of those present here. I would like to invite 5 volunteers onto the stage to list out their requirements from the ideal roommate. Then see how our system matches their requirements and finds the perfect roomie”. Hands shoot up everywhere. As always mine stay firmly rooted down. The 5 selected volunteers trot up and the first guy is given the mic.

“Hi, I am looking for a roommate who should be highly presentable. I have a lot of relatives staying in Bangalore and my parents keep flying in regularly. Hence the house has to be spic and span all the time and my roommate has to be presentable at all times. The last time my mom and sister flew in on the midnight flight they saw my half asleep roommate walking to the loo for a piss dressed only in his underwear. And to make matters worse he didn’t shut the door. It was embarrassing to say the least. And then there was that one case when …”

“Thank you sir” said our young gun interrupting the first volunteer, obviously not expecting to have gotten off on such a note. “How about we try the next volunteer?”. “Hi, I am new to Bangalore. I have never been away from home for more than 2 days at a stretch and I really miss my Mummy & Papa. I am looking for a roommate who will provide a shoulder to lean on and be a true soul mate for me. He should compliment me perfectly and ….”

“Thank you sir, thank you” said our man with the MBA as he jumped in rather hurriedly. Strangely I relished his discomfort. “How about we try the next volunteer?” he said as he turned to the man who had taken possession of the mic. All his marketing and HR sessions couldn’t help him mask the fact that he wished the 3rd volunteer wasn’t on stage. Cause the man was visibly drunk. Or stoned. Or both.

“Hey. I’m working the graveyard shift most days so my potential roommate doesn’t have to worry about me getting in the way. In fact today is one of the rare days that I’m awake at this time. The only problem is that since I’m awake only at nights I cant get any work done since everything is shut. So my roomie will have to help me a bit. Like taking my clothes to the dhobi. And buying groceries. And occasionally dropping my vehicle for servicing. And getting me some booze once in a while. And he should like heavy metal. And ….”

“T – tttha – thhaank you” stammered Mr Smith who obviously realized he was in over his young head. “How about get some responses from the audience for the naming contest?” in an obvious attempt to prevent further embarrassment. Awkward silence. It was time to put the young man out of his misery. And so my hand slowly went up.

Visible relief. “The gentleman in the last row. Yes sir, you have a suggestion?”. “Why not an acronym?” I ask. “Acronym? Of what?” asks the young man. ”Your tagline. Its everywhere. Its your motto. Its your signature. It defines your startup” I reply. He turned to the large poster behind him and read out slowly, “Looking or searching for an extra roo …… LOSER ?!”

He turned around with what I was later told was a murderous look on his face. But by then I had already disappeared. As I strolled down the street I realized there was only 1 thing left to do. I pulled the flyer out of my pocket. I read the tagline one last time “Looking or searching for an extra roommate?” before tearing up the flyer and dumping it unceremoniously in the next dust bin. Losers. Now to find myself a new roommate ....

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

i actually think this was innovative :)