In the great city of New York, there are three primary elements that everyone strives to maximize: apartment, job, relationship. It’s said you can have two, but never all three of these so you are always left working on at least one in order to have that ideal NYC life.
As seen in my post about apartment searching, the quest to find and keep a great apartment in a city known for rents starting in the $1,000/month range is one worthy of epic poetry. Ask anyone who has moved to NYC in the past 10 years about apartments and you’ll likely get a score of stories involving bizarre floor plans, unjustly shared spaces, and insane rents (insane roommates are another matter…I once knew a guy who opted to live with a wackjob roomie because the apartment was great and reasonably priced. In the end he had all his socks made into puppets and awoke to puppet theater directed by said wackjob in the dead of night. Worth it?).
Jobs–or careers, as some would say–are another matter where you can spend countless hours working on resumes and cover letters and attending dozens of “networking events” (aka desperate cocktail hours where you try to conceal your desperation behind smiles and subtle hints of your grandness) only to land a moderately satisfying gig that you take because you need health benefits and the wackjob roommate is asking for rent via one of your old soccer socks with googly eyes. New Yorkers are often career-minded and driven, so even after a position is secured you spend your time plotting ways to promotion or searching for a better job on the side.
And then we come to relationships. Eight million people live in the city so you think you’d have your pick of the crop, but because so many people are so self-focused on careers or sock puppetry and the city offers endless options and distractions, it can be really hard to match up with someone and keep them for more than a flighty weekend. Spontaneous hook ups and brief romances are easy; any form of commitment–especially if you live in different boroughs–are rare and fragile things that are often believed only to exist in the wilds of the suburbs.
Three goals to achieve. How many do I have?
Well, honestly right now I feel like I have one and some change. My apartment is fine but I don’t yet feel settled or at home there…and my job is fine but I want more. My relationship, on the other hand, is great. I have a loving and fun man in my life who I can be 100% myself with and since meeting him I’ve grown and become a better man myself. In fact I’d say my whole social life is great right now. For the first time in my life I have the community I always dreamed about having–a supportive, fun, free community that fulfills my geeky, kinky, and adventurous needs (sometimes all at once). I use to sit and watch Queer as Folk (secretly checked out from the university library) and dream of the day I would have a diverse group of gay friends to dance/laugh/play D&D with all while engaging in exciting encounters and falling in love. NYC has been a great city for these goals.
So personally I feel like I’m winning, professionally I could use a boost, and dwellerly (what’s the adverb?) I’m looking forward to that OXO sample sale this month.
A wise woman once told me that it’s good to have at least one thing left unfulfilled in your life because it means you always have something to strive for. The whole theme of this blog is becoming–or striving to be–something more…whether that’s Mr. Eagle or a better version of myself. While the city can be a difficult place to make it, it’s also an ideal place to learn and grow stronger.
So here’s to my continued becoming process.