Of Gaza, Rhetoric, And Roommates

1: What would you do if hundreds of rockets were being launched at you?

2: Um . . . at me? Well, uh, run probably.

1: No, not you, you idiot. I meant you, like, you’re a country.

2: That’s a weird question . . . uh, well do I have rockets of my own?

1: Yes, tons of ‘em.

2: Well, obviously I’d launch those back at the people doing it to me. But why were they launching rockets at me, I mean, my country?

1: Eh, I dunno. You try!

2: Okay! What would you do if you were living in an awful place?

1: What, like Staten Island?

2: No, no, much worse. I’m talking limited electricity, limited water, limited goods. And restricted access to your own resources.

1: Well, that’s pretty bleak. I guess I’d have to move.

2: Ah, well what if you couldn’t move? What then?

1: Well who’s imposing all this stuff?

2: Um, your landlord I guess. He says he can’t trust you to use things properly.

1: Well I’d lodge complaints with the building.

2: Your landlord runs the building.

1: Well, I’d meet him personally.

2: Your landlord won’t allow it.

1: Well then I’d pound on his door until he opened it and then I’d tell him he’d better give me what I want or I’ll beat the everlasting shit out of him.

2: Well . . . that got a lot more violent than I expected.

1: Anyway, I’ve got a much better one. What if you lived next to a person who said he wanted to destroy you?

2: Destroy me? Me? Why would anyone want to destroy me?

1: I don’t know. Maybe he has a real problem with your taste in music. Maybe he, to take a completely random example, doesn’t particularly enjoy having Katy Perry blasting in the apartment every goddamn evening.

2: Well, you could’ve just asked me to wear headphones, you know?

1: I have.

2: Whatever, that’s nothing compared to this one. What if someone came into our apartment one day and threw you in jail without due process or any direct evidence? Or, if you want a more relatable example, what if someone barged into your bedroom one morning and accused you of finishing the milk even though you’re lactose intolerant?

1: For the last time, I didn’t know you were lactose intolerant. Aren’t you ever going to let that shit go?

2: It’s not about knowing that I’m lactose intolerant. It’s about you opening the fridge, finding the milk gone, and just immediately jumping to the conclusion that for some reason I decided to gulp it down on the sly!

1: Can you blame me though? Do you ever look around this apartment? Other than my bedroom, the entire place is a mess. And we all know whose fault that is.

2: I hope you realize that this place was a lot nicer before you moved in.

1: Ha! This place didn’t even have a working microwave before I came. You were heating leftovers on the fucking stovetop.

2: Yeah, yeah, yeah, you come in here with your parent’s money and expect me to be impressed. Whatever, man.

1: You know what? I’ve come up with the best hypothetical ever. What if we weren’t supposed to be roommates? What if one of us should just move out?

2: Oh, I like that one! I like that one a lot!

1: Yeah, so you’ll start packing then?

2: Ha! Yes, I’ll start packing. I’ll start packing your things to make your move-out as easy as possible!

1: But what if . . .

2: What if what?

1: What if hurling hypotheticals at each other just makes things worse?

2: You mean what if posing questions with obvious answers isn’t the most productive way to defend your position?

1: Yeah, and what if it doesn’t actually help simplify things, but rather just helps us ignore the problems of the side we’re fighting against?

2: Well, if that were all true, then I’d have to say . . . maybe we should talk?

1: Yes, let’s talk.


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