You put my bed outside …

by Bill Crotty

Courtesy of Bill Crotty
Courtesy of Bill Crotty

It was not a dark and stormy night; in fact, it was quite nice outside. I was sitting on my couch, probably playing video games and downloading movies (legally, of course), when a roommate, Tasha,* went outside to smoke a cigarette.

She turned to me and said, “Hey, Bill … come here and take a look at this.”

I won’t reveal exactly what I saw, but suffice it to say there were two phrases written in ketchup on a car owned by another roommate, Rick.* One end of his car kindly suggested he have sex with himself, and the other — well, I can’t think of a publishable way to say it, but it involved his mouth and an ass — you do the math.

Rick had just driven home with this on the hood and trunk of his car, without noticing. I, of course, found it hilarious. Him, less so. I had no part in that one, but eventually we discovered my third roommate, Andrew,* was the conspirator there.

After the ketchup, we literally sat down and outlined basic rules and regulations for pranks, because we already had a well-established history of going too far with our shenanigans. The rules of the game? No permanent damage done without replacement. Everything else was fair game, as long as we didn’t get each other fired or expelled. Thus began the epic Prank Wars.

Most people think of pranks as light, innocent, good-hearted acts everyone can share a laugh about. The people I have lived with are so far from “most people” that I sometimes forget our tomfoolery is uncommon. Have you ever woken up temporarily deaf from an M-80 going off in your room? How about being barricaded in your room by a fridge blocking the door? I have — it was kind of funny, and admittedly convenient when I got hungry.

Although we laugh about these events now, the war that raged in my house for the better part of a year was as innocent as that “Friday” song is brilliant, (albeit far less destructive and brain-damaging). However, we deemed ourselves better than other pranks such as hallways full of little cups of water or writing on someone who passes out with their shoes on. We were the Robin Hoods of prankmanship — conniving, underhanded and downright awesome at our duties of damage.

To be fair, Andrew did not throw the first punch with the ketchup. I may or may not have melted his toothbrush into a U-shape, welded his deodorant lid shut and permanently closed the opening of his toothpaste dispenser a month earlier. Maybe.

The ketchup on the car was the least destructive battle in the war, and was followed shortly thereafter by more creative and cutthroat escapades, the likes of which few have seen (other than our neighbors). It was not very long before retaliatory strikes commenced, which was obviously Andrew’s fault for going out of town. He returned to find the pillows on his bed being more fit for a penguin. (We froze them). As a result of sitting in the freezer for days after being repeatedly soaked in water, he had a nice set of pillow-sized ice cubes. It wasn’t my fault we misunderstood his desire to always wear jeans and a jacket, he prefers the cold, so we were doing the guy a favor, right?

Andrew did not take this sitting down. In fact, he wouldn’t let our roommate Rick sit down at all. On one of those glorious nights when Rick had to serve a bunch of people he really didn’t like (he was a waiter), I heard Andrew call me from Rick’s room with a fully disassembled bed and a request to help move it outside.

Rick took this bullet without seeming to care, and honestly, I couldn’t think of anything that would be better without really destroying anything. Apparently he didn’t care because he had already thought of something better.

If you haven’t looked at the picture above this story yet, do so now. That’s most of Andrew’s old room in the middle there. That’s our house right below it. Unfortunately, that picture is the only record of this attack that I have, and it was taken prematurely. A few minutes later, I had gotten back on the roof and had Rick push the desk and chair up there too, so I could anchor it with Andrew’s Internet cable. His room stayed like that for the better part of a week. It was fine — our neighbors hated us anyway.

Sadly, I am running out of room and still have attacks involving rooms full of sticky notes, hordes of crickets being released and flour on fan blades to discuss, but, c’est la vie.

But I will end with one prank I have wanted to perform for a while. Consider, ladies, if someone filled your blow dryer with flour. I’m not saying anyone should do this, but I’m not saying I wouldn’t enjoy a picture or video of this happening.

*Names edited to protect privacy — not that I really care about their privacy.

—Bill Crotty is an interdisciplinary studies senior.

—This column does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Daily Aztec.