I lived with several people during college, because I am a semi-average American except the part where I'm mostly crazy. Just call me Suzythejambot Q! I was a mediocre roommate but we all came out the other side alive, at least temporarily, and not hating each other's faces. That's an accomplishment to be celebrated with a fistful of crackers and an expired bottle of Code Red, and we all know that shit's hella poison so be prepared.
The first year of school I was the sole vehicle-driving car-owner in our apartment. It could have been annoying but in reality it turned out to be neither here nor there because we were all headed to the exact same place and why not just give everybody a ride, what do you think I am some kind of smug car-withholding jerk? I always always offered but my other roommate preferred to walk because she liked to spend several hours each day bringing home trash from the side of the road. Art school is weird.
One blue fall morning it was particularly rainy, so rainy that you probably couldn't see the trash three feet from your face let alone collect it and bring it all home so for once my roommate agreed to a ride and the two of us hopped in the car and flew along the winding road to class together. We listened to music and laughed as we rounded each corner through the park while the windshield wipers flapped and thropped in chorus.
As we crested the arc of the roundabout I noticed a lonely dude and his sad umbrella trudging right-left-right in the rain. In the same breath I saw the world's largest puddle leaking menacingly out into the road directly in our path. I looked at him. I looked at it. I looked over at my roommate and she looked right back at me.
I mouthed, "NOOOOOOOOOOOOOOO–"
The front tire met the edge of the sea frame by frame, not slowing down a hair. Over my roommate's shoulder the guy turned ever so slightly and for a brief second our eyes met before –
– the point in space where our car touched the earth's seventh sea exploded upwards into a 12 foot wall of water that bore down on him like a thug in an alley as his eyes widened in horror and then –
Between one blink of an eye and the next it was already done. We were incapable of stopping what had already started because it was much, much too late.
I grimaced and looked in the rear view mirror and saw the guy standing, screaming in the rain, flipping me the bird with both hands from inside his invisible swimming pool. His umbrella was floating down the street and he was shrieking illegible nonsense looking all the while like Poseidon King of the Sea had loaned him a sweater and peed oh his snacks while he disappeared into the foggy distance.
And then I laughed. It just bubbled up from that awkward place between did that just happen and quick, run away. I laughed. I laughed and laughed until my guts hurt and my face was numb, because there's something wrong with you if that's not just a little itsy bitsy tiny bit funny.