The Scarlet & Black

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The Scarlet & Black

The Scarlet & Black

Feven Getachew
Feven Getachew
May 6, 2024
Michael Lozada
Michael Lozada
May 6, 2024
Nathan Hoffman
Nathan Hoffman
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Harvey Wilhelm `24.
Harvey Wilhelm
May 6, 2024

S&B Cribs: Living the high life just off of High Street

By Ingrid Meulemans

Friends since their first year, Jacob Friedman ’19 and Noah Segal ’19 decided this year to make the plunge and rent an apartment. For Friedman and Segal, 934 High Street was the perfect fit.

The apartment is eclectically decorated and instantly welcoming. The main room features a gray leather sofa set passed down from the landlord, a “Field of Dreams” movie poster and homemade curtains courtesy of the Wal-Mart textile aisle. Describing their section of the multiunit house as comfortable, Friedman attests to its perfect location.

“It’s nice to have a little retreat. We’re so close to High Street but we get some distance,” he said.

One problem they do have with the house, though, is the couch. “These couches are actually terrible. If you sit on it for longer than five minutes it starts to slide out from under you,” Friedman said.

They’ve also had some problems with finding the relics of past renters inside its cushions.

“I’ve found in this couch a 900-page novel and a Gameboy, and there’s like two phone chargers, three batteries, nine pencils, two dice just all buried down there,” said Segal.

“And there’s more stuff in there too. Every time you lose your keys you dread sticking your hand in the cracks,” Friedman added.

Besides Freidman, Segal, and all the odds and ends they have found in the sofa, there is another important presence in the house.

“Norm, my fish. I’ve had him since second year. He was liberated from Wal-Mart. He’s been a staple of this house and of college. He doesn’t move that much but he’s definitely alive. Everyone likes to come over and say hi,” Segal said of his beloved betta fish.

“They live forever apparently,” Friedman said, “but every time I look at him I feel like he’s going to die.”

Before posing for their obligatory Cribs group shot (in which Norm is obviously included) Friedman made sure they were both wearing their “I Heart Norm” buttons.

“I went to the world food prize organization in Des Moines this summer. And Norman Borlaug, the man credited with saving more lives than any other person in human history, is also named Norm. So, I just took a bunch of these pins because we heart our Norm,” Freidman said.

When they’re not doting on Norm, Friedman and Segal spend their time entertaining and hosting lots of game nights.

“We’re big gamers,” Friedman said. “Board games, some video games, all games.”

Friedman and Segal are also avid Survivor fans and have recently been re-watching old seasons.

934 High Street is also often the meeting place for Chalutzim, Grinnell College’s Jewish student organization.

“Jacob and I are two of the co-leaders of Chalutzim, so we also host different meetings and events. We haven’t had an off-campus base for that organization before, so that’s really cool. When there’s something, we’re hosting it. It’s important for a group to have a place to go that’s not just the JRC,” Segal said.

Of their dynamic as roommates, Friedman says that they “complement each other.”

“I’m definitely less concerned with upkeep. I lived here this summer, and when I was working in the garden I would just track mud and vegetable through the house. Then when Noah came, he just had a couple days of concentrated cleaning and organizing and decorating. It’s way nicer now,” he said.

“We’ve had fights,” Segal said, “But we work through our issues.”

“Yeah. First to draw blood and that’s the person who wins,” Friedman said.

Overall though, Friedman and Segal get along well and have a good time.

“We’re friends, so we can call each other out,” Segal said. “Yeah,” continued Friedman, “We’re similar in a lot of ways and different in others. Just like all people.”

Noah Segal and Jacob Friedman, both ’19, present their beloved betta fish Norm while wearing “I Heart Norm” pins at their apartment. Photo by Ingrid Meulemans.
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