I met the Park twins in Baxter Hall. After trying to establish who was Janice and who was Joy, I immediately got down to business.
So you guys are roommates?
Janice: We’ve been roommates since freshman year.
Joy: Except for the one year she went to Oxford.
And what was that like?
Joy: Not being roommates?
Janice: I mean, she had a single to herself [Joy smiles] so she didn’t have to deal with the roommate situation. But being roommates with someone who is not your identical twin sister, someone you don’t share clothes with, objects with, is a different experience.
So wait [I’m beginning to understand] you guys were roommates freshman year too?
Joy: We were roommates freshman year, sophomore year, not junior year because she went to Oxford.
That’s crazy. So you were in the same entry?
Joy: We weren’t going to be originally, but we requested it. Because apparently you’re not allowed to request roommates –
Janice: Shh. Don’t tell them.
Janice: We thought it would make everything more complicated – So we were like, “Eh, why don’t we just be each other’s roommates,” and it all worked out.
Have there ever been issues being roommates? Or if someone has perchance someone to bring home, does the other one know instantly?
Janice: We’ve been roommates for the last twenty years.
Joy: We share a room at home too.
Janice: I would say the biggest thing as roommates we don’t agree upon is that my sister is a lot neater than I am. So if you look at her desk, everything has an order – she’s got books on one side, her laptop – it’s very clean. I have like papers all over the place – I’m the kind of person who will eat a chocolate bar and leave the wrapper on the desk being like, “Yeah, I’m just going to finish this movie I’m watching.” And my sister is like, “No, pause the movie and throw that out right now.” But we accommodate each other.
Joy: We try to.
Do you have different interests or similar interests? I know you have different majors.
Janice: We were both interested in art in high school, but she’s pre-med and I’m applying to law school.
What do you guys like to do together? Anything synchronized?
Janice: We like to play squash together.
Janice: I don’t know about anything synchronized, but we both love old movies from the 1930s and 1940s, so we watch movies together since not many of our friends share our taste in movies.
Joy: I guess the only other thing would be we both love to eat and out-eat our guy friends. We’re notorious among our friends for eating too much and bumming off of their snack bar points.
Now for some serious questions. Of the two of you, who would you say is the Mary-Kate and who would you say is the Ashley?
Janice: I actually don’t know anything about Mary-Kate or Ashley, so I can’t answer that question.
Joy: Who was the anorexic one?
That’s fine – it totally kills my Winning London question though.
Joy: London question?
[Slightly defeated] There’s a movie where they both go to England – It’s fine don’t worry about it. [Recovering] Is it nice that you both are now back on campus?
Together: [Look at each other and in an unconvincing unison]: Yeah.
Janice: After spending a year apart it definitely puts the whole being in the same room, being roommates, being on the same campus, going to the same campus in a different perspective – It kind of makes you appreciate it more while also bringing the ever-closer-coming reality of the real world.
Ok, on a scale from one to Siamese, how close do you think you guys are?
Joy: Ok, see I thought you were going to say 1 to 10.
Yeah, but I think Siamese makes it more interesting.
Janice: Do you mean close in personality or close to each other?
To each other.
Together: [Look at each other] 8.5.
Joy: Different personalities, different majors –
Janice: I mean, we’re best friends. Does that answer your question?
Yes. Is there anything else that sums up Janice and Joy [Realizing I’ve addressed names to the wrong ones] or Joy and Janice? Anything that you’d want Williams to know about you guys?
Janice: I don’t know – a lot of people say that Joy is more quirky, that Joy seems like the pretty down to earth, very normal one when you initially see her because Joy tends to be more of a quiet personality, but once you get to know her she has her own idiosyncrasies.
Ok, so now it’s your turn to bash Janice.
Joy: What do exactly you want me to say?
Anything you want.
Joy: Well, you’ve already picked up on your messiness factor, and that’s really the only thing about you that drives me crazy.
Can you confirm or deny for me whether or not identical twins have psychic powers?
No you can’t confirm or deny or no you don’t have them?
Joy: We don’t have them.
Janice: If you pinch her I do not feel pain.
But you’re not gonna let me try – [I turn to my photographer] Do you have any questions, Jumping Boy?
Jumping Boy: My only question is: have you guys ever switched and pretended to be the other person?
Together: Not in college.
Janice: I like to think we’ve grown out of us. But substitute teachers had a pretty tough time with us in high school.
Joy: It’s easier when you’re taking the same class.
Janice: Like I can’t go into her organic chemistry class and pretend to know the stuff.
And I don’t expect to see you in Modern Drama, now that I can tell the difference.
Together: No you can’t.