Wednesday, October 24, 2012

On staying put for once

Greetings readers! I know you've missed me... I spoiled you with my three updates in an almost timely fashion. I had to go back to the old Siobhan you know and love.

Very little to report on the audition front, I'm afraid. The intention this week was to hit up Broward Stage Door Theatre on Monday and Literally Alive Theatre Company's A Christmas Carol this Monday and Tuesday, but unfortunately I have been sidelined by a really cute completely disgusting cold. I rarely get sick and therefore I handle it super well, by which I basically mean acting like a huge baby. Regardless, singing is REALLY out of the question at present.

I did audition last night for Monsterpiece Theatre Collective's all-female Richard III - it was just okay. I used a monologue I haven't done in a while and though I felt fine about it, I felt... fine. Nothing special. It was, if I'm being honest, a little one note. Though they kept me in the room for a while to talk about my resume and my training, they didn't ask me to read anything else. I think their callbacks are next week, so I suppose we'll wait and see but frankly I'm not holding my breath. Got five on the schedule for next week though - all open calls but one (boo) - so keep your fingers crossed for me that the all orange juice diet I'm about to embark on makes me actually healthy again.

In healthy living news, I'm getting back serious about the whole gym thing AND I decided to give myself a deadline! Aka, I registered for a race. Roosevelt Island Hot Chocolate 5K here I come. It's in December. I'm probably insane. You should all probably be there to watch me cross the finish line and pass out.
Eeee! Here goes nothing.

Now needless to say, because of the aforementioned really gross cold, today's gym adventure took the backseat but never fear. Still on track for tomorrow. And still clocking in at 7.5 miles so far this week... so I think I can give myself a liiiiittle credit.

In the meantime, it's October. Which for the past three years has meant moving time in this household. And yet for the first time in a long time, this nomad finally gets to stay put. It's an odd notion. Perhaps my constant schedule of New Apartment October is what makes me inclined, as I mentioned in the past, to feel as though fall - rather than January - is the real start of a new year.

The trajectory of having to move in October is also a somewhat unsettling one. See, once upon a time in first grown up apartment land, four little girls from NYU decided that living in a depressing prison cell of a two bedroom apartment with bunk beds was NOT worth $1600/month (give or take) per person, and they ventured off into the exciting world of Manhattan real estate. After looking at what felt like a thousand  twenty or so apartments, they settled on living here:

Ah, the glamorous life. Sure, they still had two bedrooms for four people, but they had a doorman and a patio and a schmancy Murray Hill address! What could go wrong?

Wellll... it doesn't work out quite so nicely in person as it does on paper when you run afoul of your next door dwelling super who has a vendetta against you and you aren't EXACTLY within the technically legal limits of your lease. One thing led to another and the super found out that management didn't know four of us lived there and well... bye bye Murray Hill, hello Harlem. And so began the first October moving month.

Meet my next home, the Miles in East Harlem.
Aww, look how much it looks like the luxury high rise it pretends to be from the outside. I've got your number, Miles, and so does every other tenant who's EVER lived there.

Pros: the biggest apartment I will likely EVER live in. The Cons: well... just about everything else. Where do I begin. From the 1 working elevator (of 4) for a building with around 1000 tenants (not an exaggeration) to the frequent police raids to the teenaged potheads in my hallway to the roaches to the mice to the neighborhood, suffice it to say that living here was an... experience. If you don't believe me you can google this monstrosity. Or read any number of scathing reviews on Yelp. (Ugh but the apartment itself... how I miss it). New October, new appointments. Life goes on.
Third apartment complex inside of two and a half years. We have a knack for picking the idyllic LOOKING ones that quickly turn to shit.

After a string of unsuccessful viewings up near City College, determined as we were to leave East Harlem we eventually settled in the no-man's-land known as upper Yorkville. Technically the border of Harlem and the UES, this was a paradise for us. Things delivered, there were (gasp) actual bars (borderline) walking distance away, and best of all, ALL OF THE ELEVATORS WORKED. Soon enough, however, we'd realize we were in another property managed by the same company. And sooner than that, some of us - namely me - would realize what a huge pain in the ass it is to live 45 minutes from everywhere you ever need to go. I need hardly tell you that October rolled around and boom... It was moving season again.

Home sweet Hell's Kitchen, where a little nomad girl can stay put for a while at last.

Which brings me to today. Moving round 4 in 3.5 years was nearly the straw that broke the camels back. Collectively, in that time, I have seen somewhere in the neighborhood of 70 apartments from the West 155th Street all the way to Crown Heights, Brooklyn. I have seen the good, the bad, the horrific, the way over-priced, the gorgeous but inconvenient, the walk through, the "but it's such a good renovation," and the dream apartments I could never have. I am, in short, basically qualified to be a real-estate broker but I'm pretty sure that to do so, you have to sell your soul to the devil. Clearly I'm not going to show you a photo of where I live now because this is the internet and I'd like not to get stalked. But give or take about a block, the above photo is where I live (not in that high rise, sadly).

My first year here did not get off to an auspicious start. After an extremely hectic but ultimately successful move in day turned pizza party turned drunken shenanigans, this went down, my roommates went home for Thanksgiving leaving me alone in a still-boxed apartment, my job took a turn for the worse, and I was left feeling... generally adrift. Though I had a new apartment in my dream neighborhood, things were not exactly going according to plan. I felt impotent, and out of control which I really hate... but I did not go shopping, a la Cher Horowitz.
This is not in New York. And so I did not go there to find sanctuary in a place where I could gather my thoughts. And no, I didn't need to look up that quote. I'm just THAT cool. It's fine, I know you're jealous.

Instead, just like any moving year... you adapt. You make a new home. And I'm proud to say that for the first time since 2009, I will be STAYING here for another year. Yep. You heard right. No boxes, no appointments, no brokers, no UHaul, no packing, no security deposits, no Ikea (actually that one's kind of a bummer). Just me, my roommates, and my first ever lease renewal. Yes, this apartment's kind of (really) small, and yes there are issues, but this time we're not cutting and running at the first sign of trouble. And besides, this neighborhood fucking rocks.

...Perhaps my relationship to my apartments could be construed as an extended metaphor with my relationship to commitment. Things to ponder for another time. Is this what adulthood feels like?

So in spite of my couchbed potato sickness day today and the generally crappy weather we've been having, I'm feeling pretty damn good about this October.

Here's to new-old beginnings.

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