Many people claim that an experience abroad makes them into different people, but George Gillinson is convinced that in his roommate’s case the old refrain is too close to the truth.
“I swear, he’s actually a different person!” Gillinson insists.
Gillinson’s roommate spent last fall abroad studying in Sao Paulo, but as soon as Gillinson returned to school he started noticing that things weren’t quite right.
“I came in to our apartment that first night and there were soccer posters everywhere. He hated soccer last spring!” said an exasperated Gillinson.
Gillinson began compiling a list of things that he believes to be evidence that his new roomate is not the same as his old roommate, and a new found love of soccer is only the first thing on the list.
“He cooks really spicy food, which he couldn’t stand last year. And he speaks with this weird accent. Plus he thinks the weather has been unbearably cold this last week. He’s from Minnesota! This shouldn’t be a problem at all!”
Also on the list, now nearing ten pages, Gillinson lists things like “has forgotten that he’s seen ‘Lord of the Rings’ fifteen times,” “has suddenly started attending Catholic mass, previously atheist,” and “no longer allergic to pineapple.”
The Administration of the University of Tulsa won’t comment on Gillinson’s accusations of negligence or his suggestion that someone kidnapped his old roommate and has stolen his identity. They would however like to remind students that free counseling is available for students at the Alexander Health Center.
“We’re always surprised when we reunite with someone who has rapidly matured,” says Study Abroad Coordinator Frank Atter. “It’s kind of like when you haven’t seen someone you know for a long time, the first thing a lot of us say is ‘You’ve changed so much’ or ‘Gosh, you look so much taller’ or ‘The color of your eyes, skin, and hair has changed.’ I’m proud to say that study abroad programs offer just the situations to inspire these kinds of experiences.”
Even Gillinson’s friends think he’s taking his paranoia a little too far. “I mean, his roommate seems a little different, but George has started collecting the guy’s hair for DNA samples or something. And that’s just weird,” said George’s longtime friend, Senior Dale Watterson.
“He can’t remember anything about all the things we did together! He can’t even drive any more! He’s not my roommate.”
The State Run media has taken a careful look at pictures of Gillison’s roommate from before and after his trip, and while he does appear a little different, Study Abroad officials have assured us that our there is no cause for alarm and to stop asking questions.