“Ear Peace: My Roommate” by Royyce Jeddi OZionn

His voice gradually overshadowed me, in the darkness, like stress gripping the body of a taxi driver caught up in the Spintex road traffic during the 5 p.m. rush hour. I was asleep and cosily dreaming whiles he was making a phone call. It felt a bit awkward that I was awake at that time of the day so I clumsily pushed my hand under my pillow and dragged out my Nokia 5130 to check what time it was. It was just about 4:30 a.m.

My roommate talks more than a late night radio presenter. What annoys me most is that he’s almost always talking about school. I’m not against school, but the way this guy talks about school ehn?? It can make one really hate the basic idea of school.

“…so you should understand me. I have been very patient with you since this semester began,” said Nathaniel, my roommate, persuasively to the person on the other end of the line.

I don’t know who he was talking to on the phone but the person must be someone close to him. And yes, I can bet my last 50 cedis that I overhead him mention school somewhere in the conversation.

“You know I love you too,” Nathaniel said in a very romantic way. Ha! He must be talking to Ruth, his girlfriend. But it startled me a bit since it was rare to hear Nat express love to his girlfriend. I laughed under my breath so he wouldn’t realize I was awake.

He then burst out laughing so loudly. This immediately messed up such calm that I like to enjoy in the mornings when I have just woken up. His voice was piercing the many bodies of my thoughts like Ashanti spears through British chests in the Sagrenti war. In fact, this was gradually becoming a state of war. Peace had to be declared immediately. Otherwise I’d have to wave my flag of truce by just lying angrily in bed. Or I could just get up suddenly from bed and ask him to shut up!

I had to quickly decide my first plan to make him reduce the pitch of his voice or probably end the call. I thought about it fearlessly for a second and realized I didn’t want to cramp his style so I decided to endure for a while, but chaley! It was just too much for me to bear! I almost got up when I rather chose to start tossing and turning in bed as a kind of peaceful demonstration. I think he noticed it because the pitch of his voice reduced. But it rose again!

“Oh Ruth! Don’t you trust me?” he shouted.

My tolerance was ripped up because he was intermittently speaking a language which I didn’t really understand. It was one of the Akan dialects but this guy used some bizarre vocabularies I had never heard before.

“So how are you going to spend the day?” he said. “Please start from the moment you decide to get out of bed,” he continued coyly.

Concerning what he had just asked Ruth, I had come fully to the fact that his conversation wasn’t going to end anytime soon.

“I have to disturb my own peace with loud music.” I thought. At least it’s better if I inflict the pain myself. I had a sinister grin when I remembered I had woofers right under by bed.

And just like a soldier who had been riddled with bullets and was almost about to die, I decided to do my worst; Shoot myself in my own head. I lazily crawled out of bed and headed for my wardrobe. I clumsily ruffled a few contents therein in a bid to find my ear piece which I gloriously found amidst several one cedi notes from yesterday’s change. I squeezed it tight in my left palm and slithered back into bed so he wouldn’t see what I had retrieved.

Just when I got into bed and was about to plug in the ear piece he stopped talking on the phone! He…suddenly…stopped…talking…on…the…phone!! This boy stopped talking midway into the conversation. No “goodbye, talk to you later” or anything like that. He hanged up, just like that! How annoying! “Or did Ruth rather hang up on him? Do I even care?” I thought. As I just lay in bed feeling so defeated…

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