Abusing Nostalgia: Letter to a College Roommate

Oh, this is classic.

I don't know the date on this, but it would have been sometime during the summer of '94.  This is the letter I wrote to the guy who would be my roommate my freshman year.  It appears to be in response to a letter he sent me.

There are a few cringe worthy moments in here, but a lot of it is still true.

I only ended up living with this guy for the first semester; he transferred to another dorm after that.  He said the dorm we lived in was too loud, which was so very true.  That dorm was insane.  My RA was nice enough to not write down that my roommate had left, so for the remainder of the year I had the room to myself.  It was pretty sweet.



Marty,


Sorry it’s taken me so long to get back to you, but I’m kind of busy and sometimes I can be lazy. There doesn’t seem to be enough hours in the day.

Anyway, I guess I’ll list off some things about me in the same way you did. Here goes:

My family consists of my mom, dad, and older brother, who is twenty-four and will be a middle school science teacher in the fall. My father’s name is David, he works at a place called Kevin Coleman. He gets jobs for the mentally and physically handicapped. My mom’s name is Sherry. She works at Tallmadge (a city two cities over from Kent) High School as a teacher for students with learning disabilities. Oh, yeah, my brother’s name is Chris.

As for myself, my full name is Kyle Gerrit Vanderneut. My middle name comes from a second cousin of mine who lives in Holland. That should give you a clue that I’m Dutch. I’ve never been to the Netherlands, but I really want to go eventually. At the moment, I’m debating over whether or not to bring my wooden shoes with me to college. Yes, I’m that into my heritage. Although the only person who could speak the language fluently, my dad’s aunt, died recently, so that kind of sets my interest back a bit.

I’ve played soccer since I was five and it’s one of the few things I’m very passionate about. The other is writing. Unfortunately, I want to go on to get my Master’s in English, which means I have to get really good grades, which means I don’t have time for soccer. Otherwise, I would have played. I played varsity for three years in high school. It’s a great game and the World Cup being held here drove me absolutely nuts with joy. Blasted Brazilians, knocked out the U.S. and the Netherlands!

Probably my third passion (soccer and writing being the first two) would be music. A friend of mine once told me that I get more out of music than anyone she knows. I’m currently in a band called Oral Groove. It’s a five man band with two guitars, a bass, drums, and me, the lead singer. Three of our members are underclassmen, so we’re breaking up with the end of the summer. I’m going to look for a band to join at Ashland. From what I was told at orientation, it shouldn’t be to hard to find one.

My five favorite bands, at the moment, are Pearl Jam, Ned’s Atomic Dustbin, R.E.M., Weezer, and the Beastie Boys. Yes, the Beastie Boys can be considered rap, but they aren’t your usual kind of rap. They can’t be they’re the only rap band that I like.

I’m currently learning how to play guitar, but I don’t own one. I might have one by the time I leave, so maybe you could teach me? I played the sax for about two years, but I really don’t remember all that much.

In high school I had the soccer team in the fall, and the Drama Guild in the Winter and Spring. I was also on the school newspaper and the literary magazine. I’m in two international organizations Quill and Scroll and the Thespians.

I only watch three programs on TV - Batman the Animated Series, Lois and Clark: The New Adventures of Superman, and the X-Men. If you can’t tell, I’m into comic books. I’ve got somewhere around two thousand. It’s expensive, immature, and insane, but I like it.

Oh, yes, you and I are definitely having a James Bond marathon. Bond movies are awesome! I can’t wait for the new ones - Pearce Bronson is going to be perfect!

I’m going to bring a CD player and portable dual cassette tape recorder which is CD compatible. I’d bring my stereo, but it’s kind of big and the only thing it can do that my portable can’t is play records. I do own a few records, however, so if you have a great deal of them and want me to bring my stereo, that’s not a problem.

I could probably get a small fridge around here for a cheaper price than at Ashland. This is a college town, after all. So just tell me if you want me to get one, and we can split the price or whatever. Oh, and I think bunk beds are the way to go. If I tried to make a loft I’d end up nailing my hand to the bed.

Well, I’ve rambled on long enough. Write me back with a list of stuff that you’re going to take down and I’ll see what we need. If I don’t hear from you soon, I’ll see you in a couple of weeks!