Sociological Approach to Assigning ‘The Best Room’

During my second year at university I chose to live in a house with other 5 people I had met in halls the year before. When it came to choosing rooms we all agreed that we did not want to be the standard arguing bunch of second years but wanted to agree peacefully on how to assign rooms. What we did was use a ‘preference system’ which appeared to work at first (as the most easy going where complacent to it) but when it came to dishing out ‘best’ and ‘worst’ rooms problems started to arise.

3 rooms on the first floor were left and 3 housemates (including myself) still needed to choose. Based on preference and agreements I was the only one who had to still decide what room to get with my other housemate, who for the purpose of this article I am going to call ‘Nick’.

My housemate, who insisted on picking up the keys and moving in on his own, had to still choose which of the 2 bedrooms, on first floor at the back of the house to choose for himself and the other one remaining would have been for me.

When he got there he said ‘they were the same’ and sent me a picture of his black Labrador sitting by a pile of boxes with the caption ‘Bella chose my room and anyway they are the same’.

As a result Nick got the biggest room in the house with built-in wardrobe, view of the garden and warm.

I got the room next to his. Same thing no doubt? Well, beyond the difference in storage space there were several cracks on the wall, stains, a £5 desk and mold. As it was facing outside (and not the inside of the house) it was also considerably colder and if things could not possibly get any worse it had levels of dampness which can only be compared to the ones in the ‘Stingray Tank’ room at the London Aquarium.

So, as he used the ‘Bella system’ last year, I thought it would be only fair to use my dogs this time! Unfortunately I don’t have dogs but I was very fond of my aunt’s dog ‘Lucy’ (black and white collie in the picture up top) who passed away almost 5 years ago now. As she was a good bitch she undoubtably will be in ‘doggy heaven’ and although cannot physically assign the rooms I’m sure she would be happy to guide us in spirit.

So, as I’m a sociological nerd, I decided to come up with an objective method to skim down the candidates for certain rooms based on their physical and psychological needs.

Feel free to download the PDF and use it in your household. One can either get their housemates to answer the questionnaire and judge eligibility based on the answers or follow the ‘point system’ which assigns a certain number of points for each answer and then people get classified into a priority list based on the points they earned.

Let me know if it works!

Manchester, United Kingdom

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