Finding a good roommate match is a complicated dance that usually ends in a huge compromise on one party's end and them deciding to just "going with it." This kind of struggle resonates most loudly in large or expensive cities—like that one experiment our writer did when she posed as the worst roommate ever on New York Craigslist but still got a million interested parties applying to live there. Even more insane—and seemingly very real—is the craziest roommate ad ever for a room in California's The Startup Castle. It might be the most demanding portrait of a human to ever be supposedly serious and it's making me very happy about my one-bedroom, thank you very much.
The Startup Castle is pretty much an actual castle nestled in Silicon Valley. Anyway, what started as an ad for a roommate on the Stanford message boards propelled out into the universe, as ridiculous things are wont to do. It's not the like 18 thousand-square-foot living space is that insane. It's the roommate qualifications and deal-breakers that seem immoderate. It's totally reasonable to request a roommate who is "motivated and conscientious" as well as "unlikely to set your belongings on fire or use all the communal mayonnaise for "an art project"," but these get weird fast.
- Have a top-class degree or job with a strong math/science requirement - Exercise at least 15 hours in a normal week - Commute by car less than 20% of the time (Bicycle commuter!) - Prefer organized systems and common rules - Like petting dogs
I have been through the wringer of hunting for a place to live in a city where demand is high and those people already living in a place really have the upper hand, and it is a dark place ("getting dumped by a co-habitating partner in Brooklyn" level of dark). I looked at an apartment with a bedroom I was told a dog of the same size and likeness of a polar bear would often share. Another space was a very dark basement bedroom with a bartender who stayed asleep in the living room during the entire tour. I settled on a place by a park where the cats had free reign over the kitchen counters. I understand some living spaces are insane, but this one takes the cake with its deal-breakers, which say that "this might not be the best place for you" if any of the following apply to you:
- Watch more than 4 hours of TV/movie/game entertainment per week - Have more than 1 tattoo - Have ever attended more than 1 protest - Make more than three posts a week to social media - Listen to a songs with explicit lyrics more than an once a day - Wear make-up more than twice a week - Own any clothing, shoes, watches, or handbags costing over $500 - Have bills that get paid by somebody else - Drive a vehicle that was given to you by your parents - Get regular spending money or gifts from your parents - Have more than one internet app date per week - Have a complex diet that requires lots of refrigerator space - Drink alcohol more than 3 drinks per week - Use marijuana more than twice a year - Have been prescribed anything by a psychiatrist more than once - Use any other drug more than twice in your entire life
I'm intrigued about what qualifies as "game entertainment" but I'd wager my new training goals in MarioKart might not win me any points at The Startup Castle. It's cool that the place has a gym and theater, but what's most exciting is the mention of "lots of secret spaces hidden all over." Like what, I wonder? I always thought it'd be endlessly cool to dwell a mansion with ample hidden passageways. Though, given the completely square if not impossible guidelines to qualify to live there, even if Startup Castle does have secret rooms, chances are they only hold like, timed math exams or stationary exercise bikes. No thanks.
To really seal the nail in the coffin, the ad ends with what's likely intended as a promise but sounds more like a threat: "As we get the permanent group settled, we're hoping to do things as a group like fitness challenges, group dinners, bike rides, challenge outings, hosting events, and working on building things together."
"CHALLENGE OUTINGS"? These are some sick sick people and I'm very happy I don't live in Silicon Valley, secret passageways or not.
Images: ABC; Giphy