We're Captive on the Carousel of Time
A few weeks ago my old roommate (or shall I say ten roommates ago) emailed me asking about my dealings with our old apartment. After six years in our East Village, St. Mark's apartment which I lovingly referred to as a small dark hole, she was moving out. Naturally I suggested we celebrate over drinks and asked her for an update on how the apartment has been since I moved out about four years ago. The St. Mark's apartment had been my first New York City apartment, a sublet steal. In fact, its very location inspired questions like "who did you have to screw to get this place." While it was a privilege to live on New York City's most iconic streets in one of my favorite neighborhoods, the apartment also provided enough creative fodder for Girls-like blog posts and novel-worthy story elements. There's nothing like a little pain to help the creative juices flow. Or to give you a full picture; when asked for an update on the apartment, my roommate's response was:
"I am actually moving back to parents for a few months, then moving in with my boyfriend. I just can't deal with the building anymore. Slum lord is right. We literally didn't have gas for six weeks over the holidays - so out of control! Let's see what else you missed - They redid the gas lines in the building two years ago, we literally had no wall outside of our apartment for the last two years. They just replaced it last week and repainted because they were fined by the city. They replaced the lines at least three times cause they kept doing it wrong. Our bathroom ceiling caved in last summer because the person above us rents the apartment like a hotel - a new person every 3 days and they broke the shower or toilet, it leaked down. Old Man Winter, and M both died (90yr old+ building tenants) :( Old Man Winter left behind a hoarders delight - literally men with hazmat suits were removing things from his apartment to dumpsters that were 12' high and half a block along the length of St. Mark's, it was insane. This went on for two days. And the little clog man who wears the heels and always used to say the elevator is broken has taken to peeing in the hall, in fact, I've caught him numerous times standing on the stairs holding his junk. Awesome. Never a dull moment at 22 St. Mark's. The one good thing is that the newish super is actually the nicest man and responsive. As crazy as it was in that building I will miss my usual surroundings for sure."
If you don't live in the fantasy world of Carrie Bradshaw and have to live within a real budget, you sure as hell better have a sense of humor. Despite the daily trials of the apartment, I still walk by it with fondness and I'm sure my former roommate will do the same. We made it out with steal resilience, tons of memories and our sense of humor in tact.