(Author's note: The size of the room is intended to represent "your share" of the room. Ergo, 50 sq. ft. would translate to a 50 sq. ft. single or a 100 sq. ft. double or a 150 sq. ft. triple or etc. And yes, I just used the word "ergo." Booyah.)

25 sq. ft. or less


You're fucked. If you live alone then you're living in someone else's closet. If you live with another person then you're living in a storage closet that the University is calling a dorm room due to budget constraints. If you live with two people or more then God help you. No matter what the situation, you will grow to despise the people you live with. Even if you started out the year on your own in your 5×5 cell, you'll soon be able to enjoy the company of the voices that begin to creep into your brain. Sure, at first it was all, "Let's go have fun," or "Burn them! Burn them all!" or "Yo quiero tener control del cuerpo por un dia," but eventually they started talking only to one another and you began to feel left out. Imaginary bastards. If in fact those voices belong to actual people, mark my words: if anyone has an annoying habit, drumming on their desk, humming to him/herself, tossing and turning constantly at night, then the others will conspire to beat the living hell out of them. Face it; you're in a shit situation. The only positive here is that you'll hate being in that hole so much that you'll take every opportunity to go out and meet people. Of course, you can never bring them back to your room.


Between 25 and 75 sq. ft.


Alright, you're doing a little better, but not by much. The upside is that now you won't constantly be rubbing elbows with your roommates or, if you live in a single, the walls. The downside is that eventually you'll see someone else's room and realize how much better life could be than it actually is. Grass is always greener and all that shite. At this point you finally have room for your dresser, your desk, and your bed which you no longer have to bunk; although you probably still will in a futile attempt to create more room. Unfortunately, if you're in a single that's as far as furniture goes; you'll probably either have no place for anything else or be unable to afford it on your own. Though luck. If you have roommates, however, the situation improves. Most likely one person will bring the microwave, one person will bring the mini-fridge, and with a good bit of luck you might end up with a TV. These appliances will be shared in an almost communistic barter system forced on you by necessity. However, like communism itself, this system will have its problems. The microwave should be largely unproblematic so long as no one sees the video of grape plasma on this site and decides to test it out, but the other two are sure to be causes of conflict. Unless you hit the jackpot there will be only one TV and multiple people, and of course each person will want to watch something different. When you want to watch sports they'll want to watch a movie that's only airing at the same time as the game. When they want to watch CSI you'll want to watch Lost. And when they want to watch America's Next Top Model you'll want to watch ANYTHING ELSE. The most effective way to handle this issue is to go to the gym often and rule by dominance. Next there is the mini-fridge, which despite its unassuming nature will become a clusterfuck of issues over the course of the year. There will be disagreements concerning whether the food inside it is communal or private, over who has to clean it out, over who keeps taking your goddamn lunch even though Phil saw that it was clearly marked, etc. Still, it is a vital part of every dorm room. Where else are you going to put the beer?


Between 75 and 150 sq. ft.


Life is good. To get this sort of living arrangement you've either become an RA, moved into one of the apartment style halls, or murdered one or two of your former roommates and thrown their bodies in the river. In any case, kudos. You've reached dorm room nirvana. You've got a ton of space and the license to feng shui it out to your liking. You've also probably got the money to do so from either A) being an RA, B) a second job, or C) doing hits for the local crime syndicate, respectively. In this state of being your collegiate life will progress easily. You'll get your work done without issue, if you want to, because you'll no longer have Dave Matthews blaring from a roommate's iHome from when you start working on your paper until 4 A.M. Your social life with prosper both because you'll be utterly tranquil and contented and because you'll have the room that everybody wants to hang out in. Big, several chairs (one beanbag), TV, PS3, and fridge/food. Even your financial situation will better itself if you've got the initiative to run a side business with all the extra room you have. Some suggestions include a tutoring service, meth lab, or even a drycleaners complete with Vietnamese immigrants. The world is yours.


150 sq. ft. or more.


There is only one explanation for this: you live in the gymnasium because you didn't pay your housing fees. Your major issue will be finding various places to sleep for the night without security finding out you're there. However, fear not! You can make the most of this situation if you are resourceful. With the right perspective, this situation is better than any of the previously mentioned arrangements. You've certainly got room to stretch your legs; hell, if you wanted to you could stretch out completely and run a mile or two. You'll never miss a basketball game, concert, or other such event, and you'll be there so often that you may as well join the team. These places are usually centrally located on the campus which is a plus in a logistical sense, and even if it isn't there's most likely a shuttle service. You've got the locker room for your bathroom; arguably the largest now private bathroom on campus and one that you don't have to maintain personally. Finally, as long as it's basketball season you can always raid the concession stands for food after hours. Sure it's kind of illegal, but so is your living situation so why not take it to the fullest? You're a landed pirate. You live by your own code of ethics. You take what you need and give nothing back. You can even wear an eye patch and grow a beard if you so choose, but I'd advise against amputating your leg for the appearance. After all, the team's playing Duke next week and they need you on the fast break.