From the Editor's Desk

From the Editor’s Desk: An Ode to my College Apartment

Mary Norkol | The PhoenixPictured here: Evidence of the "hodge-podge, hot mess, hell of a good group of friends" referenced in this week's column.

The carpets are an ugly dark blue and many a substance have been spilled on them. The light in one of the bedrooms flickers for minutes at a time before fully turning on. The decor looks as if it was thrown together last minute by families looking to get rid of excess furniture — that’s because it was.

This may not sound like an ideal place to live, but it’s perfect for five college girls. 

Like most college kids, we were looking for cheap rent and close proximity to campus — we weren’t too worried about creaky floors or flickering lights.

It hasn’t been perfect. We’ve had mice, spiders bigger than anyone should be comfortable with, tense arguments, late nights and rushed mornings. But still, it’s clear our humble abode on Columbia Avenue has been full of life.

If you look closely, you can see that each resident has made her mark on our little home.

A tiny Mexican flag hangs in the center of Steph’s bedroom door. Hispanic music and Steph’s thunderous laugh can be heard from her corner of the apartment on any given Friday or Saturday night.

Each time I enter the front door, I turn to my right, expecting Diana perched on the sunroom couch, Beats headphones covering her ears and glasses situated at the end of her nose — that is, if she’s not frantically looking for them.

A small piece of paper is taped in the corner of the mirror in our entryway. It reads “You’re a square” in Patricia’s slanted lefty handwriting. While I couldn’t tell you why or how we found that funny enough to showcase in our apartment, I grin every time I see it.

Stuffed animals of cartoon characters — namely Stitch of “Lilo and Stitch” — sometimes find their way out of Melissa’s bedroom and into our living room, a testament to her love for all things Disney.

As for me, well, my presence is made known by the countless copies of The Phoenix littered throughout the house and the rate at which we go through coffee.

Together, we’re a hodge-podge, a hot mess and a hell of a good group of friends. 

My throat tightens thinking about packing up the light-up “BAR” sign and the “Girls Out of Hell” poster showcased in our living room at the end of this year. It started as a way to get cheap rent and a place to crash for a couple years, but it’s become a haven for us at the end of a long day, long week or — let’s face it — a long year.

And since I’ll never live in a situation quite like this again, I’m sure glad I’ve enjoyed it.

This week’s paper features the news section covering the Rogers Park Five Guys branch closing and how local residents are doing their part to keep the monarch population thriving in the neighborhood.

Our sports reporters offer an inside look at the new men’s basketball locker room and a preview of the men’s soccer team’s conference play.

A&E editors Mary Grace Ritter and Emma Sulski attended Riot Fest in Chicago this weekend, and our coverage can be seen inside. 

The Phoenix Editorial Board voices its concerns to the Loyola administration about how the school has handled sexual assault investigations over the past several years.


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