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The Office
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Gainesville Apartments as Characters from The Office

Back to school season is officially underway, and sometimes, life at UF just feels comical. Fittingly, here are my choice of Gainesville apartment complexes as characters from the hilarious, award-winning sitcom, The Office.

The Standard: Kelly Kapoor and Andy Bernard

Starting off simple, we have the materialistic and snobby Kelly Kapoor and Andy Bernard as The Standard. In all honesty, this was the most obvious placement of characters. The Standard, located right on University Avenue, is as exorbitant of an apartment as you can find in this city. I can totally picture Kapoor basking in The Standard’s rooftop pool. Meanwhile, Bernard would probably be off telling just about everyone that, yes, he lives at The Standard. This is especially true, considering his unhealthy obsession with sharing his attendance at Cornell University in the show. Ultimately, Kapoor and Bernard are destined to be in the center of Gainesville’s life and living at The Standard is their best chance at doing that.

Midtown Apartments: Meredith Palmer

Remember when Meredith Palmer drank so much at the office party in “Moroccan Christmas” that she set her hair on fire? To me, that sounds like a plausible scene to occur at Midtown Apartments. Are Midtown residents really getting any sleep with their front yard featuring Grog House, JJ’s, Rowdy’s and a few more bars? I feel like every day would be a “Moroccan Christmas.” Palmer would likely go bar-hopping all through the night, walk back to her apartment and sleep a few hours, before heading off to classes on campus.

2nd Avenue Centre: Jim Halpert and Pam Beesly

Congrats, 2nd Avenue residents! You really are the main characters. Jim Halpert and Pam Beesly are The Office. They encapsulate the perfect combination of funny and seriousness within the show. So, what is it about 2nd Avenue that fits this role so well? For starters, in terms of off-campus housing options, this location has the rest beat. Fixated right between both Midtown and Downtown, 2nd Avenue residents have the best of both worlds. Plus, with only a 15-minute walk to campus, everything is accessible. Though Halpert and Beesly are always featured in The Office, they welcome newer characters because no one could really take their place. Similarly, 2nd Avenue Centre sits back as other complexes are built, knowing that residents will eventually return to the most ideal Gainesville apartment there is.

The Ridge: Ryan Howard

Ryan Howard is the biggest disappointment in the entire nine-season show. The very first episode is about Howard’s start at Scranton’s location of the Dunder Mifflin paper company. Forgive me for thinking he would have a better character arc than becoming Vice President of the entire corporation only to be sent to prison for fraud. The Ridge is the epitome of the Ryan Howards in the world. Even the name sounds like an apartment would be super popular and relevant, but, in the end, it is not. The Ridge, unlike some of the apartments previously mentioned, is a townhouse and is even home to a lazy river. Representative of Howard, residents likely moved here thinking it was a smart money move, only to find that the far distance from campus and the lack of a functioning lazy river make The Ridge unworthy of the high price.

Deco ’39 Luxury Apartments: Dwight Schrute

Do I even have to state the obvious? Deco ’39 is definitely a unique-looking apartment. With its bright blue exterior, it sets itself apart from others on the market. Dwight Schrute himself is also an oddball. It would be unlike Schrute to live so close to city life, considering he is a beet farm owner; nonetheless, he of all characters would choose to stay at Deco ’39 for its quirky appearance and amenities. Some of the units found at this 10th Street apartment even contain built-in bookcases, perfect for Schrute to store manuals and manifestos of Battlestar Galactica.

Cottage Grove: Erin Hannon

There are few perfect words to describe Cottage Grove apartments beside quirky, and the same goes for Erin Hannon. As one of the newest additions to the show, Hannon would not mind keeping her distance from campus, making Cottage Grove’s location on 13th Street sound ideal. Plus, Hannon would surely make use of all the space, considering that each resident gets their own mini house. I can picture the young receptionist enjoying this newfound independence by decorating one of her empty bedrooms as a home office, just in case she needs to take calls on off-hours.

The Lark: Michael Scott

Now, for the man who started it all. Michael Scott, in all his somewhat annoying and loveable quirks, would have to be The Lark on 11th Avenue. This might seem like an odd placement, but when you think about it, Scott is the “World’s Best Boss,” and it is only fitting that he stays at a place as stylish as The Lark. Plus, this complex is home to some of its own quirks, like a mini-bowling alley for residents to use whenever they wish. Scott is often criticized for his weirdness and his slight inability to do his job, but what he does better than anyone is creating a family in the workspace. The Lark embodies that perfectly: it feels like the comfort character that you always return to.

Racheal Jones is a senior at the University of Florida studying Sociology. She's completed research on family violence and is currently working on a new research project. She loves Marvel movies, sapphic fantasy novels and Taylor Swift. Outside of school, she's learning how to roller skate, take care of her plants and rock climb.
Lauren Brensel is a freshman Journalism major at the University of Florida. She enjoys writing entertainment and identity pieces, and is trying her hand at screenwriting, too. You can find other stories by Brensel here: https://laurenbrensel.carrd.co/
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