House Anxiety

Lauren in front of a destroyed wall.

I’m back at Squallyoaks for the first time in over a week. It was a much needed vacation. I think I’ve been subconsciously avoiding coming home. Everything is just getting too much for me—the drugs, the mess, the people. Seriously, all everyone ever does in this fucking house is eat frozen pizzas, snort ketamine, and argue about whose turn it is to clean out the pond.

I’m back now, however, to help make the house look presentable for when ‘THE MAN’ (said in emergency emergency robot voice) who owns the building comes over on Wednesday to check up on us. He does these little checks every few months to make sure we haven’t done any serious damage to the building since his last visit, i.e. burnt it to the ground / painted it glow-in-the-dark / made a pond out of the bathtub, etc. If the poor guy only knew the half of it…

Subsequently, we’re now trying desperately to fix everything we managed to fuck-up since his last visit. For starters, three of the four windows in the living room are broken. Since we can’t afford to fix them professionally, my flatmate James is attempting to repair them himself. He’s already cut his hand open twice. Kerri and Michelle are repainting the walls. This is necessary as they are completely covered in graffiti. We now all seriously regret drawing over every reachable surface in the house when we were drunk. I mean, was it really necessary to write TOM SELLECK HAS A MUSTACHE on the kitchen wall, or LESBIAN DIES IN FEROCIOUS SCISSORING ACCIDENT in giant red letters above the toilet? I think not.

Not everyone is helping in the mass tidy-up, however. Dom, for example, has opted not to clean but rather to sit on his ass eating fried chicken and watching the Paralympics.

“This is so much better than the real Olympics,” he says with a greasy piece of chicken hanging from his bottom lip. “The real Olympics are so boring. Who the fuck wants to watch a bunch of starving Ethiopians run around in circles all day when you could be watching quadriplegics attempt to do gymnastics?”

“Really?” says Kerri, her face covered in magnolia paint. “I really enjoyed watching that event in the Olympics where the hairy lesbians threw metal balls really far.”

“This doesn’t seem fair” adds Dale, staring blankly at the 100-meter breast stroke. “I mean, that lady is missing an arm, but that other lady is missing a leg. Surely it’s easier to swim with a missing leg than it is with a missing arm.”

“I wouldn’t really call that swimming,” adds Dom. “It’s more like drowning in a forward motion.”

My personal mission for the day is not to clean per-say, but rather to make some small but vital improvements to the house that will help to change THE MAN’s perception of us squatters, and prove to him that we’re not the unmercifully evil and destructive bastards that we make ourselves out to be, but rather that we’re all intrinsically good people intent on making the world a better place. Or whatever.

For example, at the moment I am fashioning some decorative signs out of cardboard that I feel will improve the general morale of the house. All the signs have super positive and clever saying written on them. So far I’ve thought of DRUGS ARE FOR MUGS, CRACK IS WHACK and DON’T BE A SLOB, GET A JOB!

Holy cow, I feel better about myself already.



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