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Elf's Diary Entry #15 - The Scavenger and the Cactus

I am arguably the crappest flat mate ever.


Not for any genuine terrible reason, but I would not be suprirsed if my flat mates had spent the last week assuming I was 'Missing presumed Dead'.

The reason being, I am never in.

In the last week the amount of times I have woken up to find that the front gate to our flat has been locked has been 5. Meaning that 5 days out of the 5 I have been in the flat my flatmates have assumed I am not in - locking it to protect the flat from aggressive burglers and postmen, without realising what they have locked in is a ferile ginger comedian. Since moving in with my new crew (I like to imagine I'm in a gang) I've realised I am one of those 'ghost flatmates' that are often joked about in memoirs, t.v series and college films. The peculiar quiet ones. I am rarely in, and the only time you can tell I'm in is either via the slow creaking of my bedroom door or the sound of coffee being made at 11pm at night before I start my before bed 'writing ritual'. 9 times out of 10 I return back to the flat during the witching hour and I often wake up before it is time for a Vampire to return to bed. I'm like a really shit owl. I think the bloke who runs the 24 hour gym across the road knows me better than my flatmates do *.

No one ever wants to be this type of flatmate. When you move in to a group setting you want to be the reliable one, the 'lynchpin' to the group, not the one people will happilly assume is possibly a psychopath or serial killer on the side. We all remember THAT guy from freshers week. At University my nickname in halls was the 'scavenger' due to my habit of never owning any food or ever attempting to cook (Kitchens terrify me). Instead I infamously lived off the remainders of what my other flatmates had not eaten, scouring the fridge like a zombie when I returned home at 2am from a night out. My flatmate, Arthur, in the end used to put everything in a small tupparware box and label it FOR DRUNK ELF - leaving it for me to find when I'd stagger in. Yes, this is disgusting, but forgive me but I was a huge eco-friendly vegan at the time. I got my punishment when I went to the doctors in final term of first year and he told me I was 'so malnourished' the only thing he could recommend was 'Guinness and Steak EVERY DAY for a month'. Safe to say I stopped being vegan after that and eventually stopped eating pasta raw.....**

So I return now to my flat in South London as a modern day 23 year old woman. Nothing has changed that much. I am incredibly vigilant when it comes to cleaning and annihilating germs, but no food in the flat is mine and since moving in I've only used the cooker-thing once. To make Mulled Wine. The one thing my flatmates CAN rely on me for is my obsessive compulsion to bulk buy whole milk, croissants and coffee to feed our collective aggressive addiction to caffeine.

I realised this morning, when I returned to the flat to settle on the sofa and have a day of 'rest' before the final show of Duck Flu, that the only entity that really relies on me to be in the flat more than once a month is my cactus, Bob. But even he doesn't need me that often, as he only needs to be watered occassionaly, as he is, just to repeat, a cactus. If anything, if I gave him TOO much affection he would actually die. My presence in his life can't be too overbearing. How sad.

Poor form on me I think. Reflecting on the last week I have worked over 12 hour days and pushed my body to the limit of exhaustion. I've had 5 hours sleep and have eaten so many almonds I am pretty sure I have given myself cyanide poisoining.

So, to conclude, my new objective for the next week is to try and be in more. Try and be normal a bit more. Dare I say it, work less.

*His name is Terry. Great guy.

*** I still do this. I love it. Please don't judge me too harshly.

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