On this week’s ‘So You Think You’re an Adult?’, one listener is appalled to discover they threw out their messy flatmate’s expensive watch without realising.
“Let’s just call the guy Jake,” they told Moncrieff. “For the last few weeks, he has mysteriously disappeared every time it’s his turn to take out the bins.
“So, this week, I did it. I gathered stuff from around the living room, including a cardboard box on the coffee table, assuming it was empty.”
However, the listener later learned Jake’s expensive watch he had just “splurged on” was in the cardboard box.
“He’s furious,” they said. “Now, I feel terrible.
“Should I offer to buy him a new watch, even though it was an honest mistake?”
Broadcaster Declan Buckley said there is a “certain amount of respect required” in spaces shared with flatmates, which Jake doesn’t have.
“I can totally see how in a fit of frustration, you just nob everything in you just kind of lump everything into a black bin and throw it to the dump,” he said.
Despite Jake’s messiness, however, the listener must acknowledge the “consequences of what you’ve done” and decide whether or not to tell Jake.
“Jake might believe in his own messiness, he left it somewhere and he can’t remember,” Declan said.
'Take responsibility for your own actions'
Writer Barbara Scully said the listener “must take responsibility for your own actions” and tell Jake they threw out the watch accidentally.
“Jake’s living in hope [the watch] is going to be somewhere, and it’s never going to be,” she said.
The listener should consider if they weren’t throwing out rubbish “in a haste”, they might have realised Jake’s watch was on the table.
“They shouldn’t have chucked the box out without checking,” she said.
“[He] left it on a table, which he is quite entitled to do since it’s a shared space - he didn’t go into your bedroom and leave it there.”
Declan and Barbara were unsure how much the listener should back pay for the missing watch.
Declan said there is a “lesson in there” for Jake about being responsible for his belongings and his chores.
“There is a way [to compromise],” he said. “Maybe a kind of a measure of a contribution rather than a completely replacement.”
Barbara didn’t think that was fair, as the watch could cost “thousands” and the listener ultimately threw it out.
“There is a lesson to be learned [for Jake], but should he be paying and being at the loss of a couple of grand potentially?” Barbara questioned.
“I think [the roommate] has a duty to replace the watch.”