Something . . . Borrowed?

June 12th, 2014 · 5 Comments

Recently, my friend Jim posted a photo of a CD case to Facebook (it was the Smashing Pumpkins). He remembered that someone in college had borrowed the disc that goes inside it and jokingly asked whether “anybody want(ed) to confess after 15ish years” to having it. [CORRECTION: Jim has since clarified that the photo was of his replacement CD case. He had to buy a new one because the person who borrowed the CD also has the case.]

Which got me thinking: I definitely don’t have Jim’s CD, but it definitely wasn’t out of the realm of possibility. We did, after all, live in the same res college at Northwestern. When you live with your friends in college, you tend to borrow and share a lot of stuff. You’re young and poor, and people leave their stuff with you when they go on their externship in another city, and how many copies of Mellon Collie and the Infinite Sadness do you really need in one place, anyway? It all makes sense at the time, and of course when you borrow things, you do s0 with every intent of returning it . . . some day.

But then the years come and go, and before you know it, you’re just throwing things carelessly into boxes and moving away. Then one day, you open those boxes and figure out that somehow, you walked away with TWO copies of “The Great Gatsby.”* Hmmm.

Did you — accidentally or otherwise — walk away from college with stuff that belongs to someone else? Better yet, do you still have these things, or did you return them . . . or did you just throw them out? And are you, like Jim, missing something that you know you lent someone and just never got back?

* Anup, I’m pretty sure the extra copy of Gatsby had your name on the inside. How did I end up with yours?!

Tags: everyday stuff · friends

5 responses so far ↓

  • 1 Jim // Jun 12, 2014 at 9:33 am

    I can’t think of anything I walked of with in college. Then again, a bunch of my stuff from college is in storage. I do remember selling a book to a friend for $6. He wrote a check. I never cashed the check; it was too much trouble for $6. Also, clarification on the CD — that’s a new copy. The person who borrowed the college version kept case and all.

  • 2 Jim // Jun 12, 2014 at 9:47 am

    Given the number of copies of this particular Smashing Pumpkins album that were swiped from Northwestern in the late 1990s, there is only one logical explanation: Bill Corgan himself was climbing through dorm windows to take back his art from the undeserving.

  • 3 Keao // Jun 12, 2014 at 11:29 am

    Not college…but when I lived with Vinnie, he had bootleg DVDs of all the seasons of Friends (which I LOVE). I did not toss them. After 8 years, I still have the hope of returning them…I just have to track down where seem of them went. I still believe they are somewhere in the house…hopefully.

  • 4 Shawn // Jun 12, 2014 at 11:31 am

    I’ve had similar experiences being in bands. After awhile, everyones gear gets mixed up, and then the band breaks up and you walk away with one more microphone than you had before, but a few less microphone stands. This kinda thing happens when people start sharing their stuff.

  • 5 Crissy // Jun 12, 2014 at 1:08 pm

    I admit to finding Jim’s rubber lobster, Fitzwilliam, among my belongings once. I returned it to him, perhaps by mail.

    Jim, what did we ever decide to do with that room humidifier you were hanging on to for me? Did you end up chucking it? It was “prescribed” by someone at Searle, so it was pretty useless, anyway. :)

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