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Originally Posted: 2003-05-06 16:05
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An Open Letter To Myself

I know you really wanted to move here. For ten years all your friends and family heard is how much you wanted to move here. Back "home." Back to where you were born. But various reasons kept you where you were. You were a big fish in a small pond. You enjoyed a comfortable level of class-D celebrity. You hobnobbed with interesting people and famous musicians. You had creative control. You set your own hours. You had fun parties in your sweet house that had so much space you had a room just for a pool table. And you had a pool. And Koi. You had a private back yard with a hammock. But no, you wanted to move to New York. You were missing out, you said.

So you scouted New York. You went from miserable apartment to miserable apartment looking for a place to call Home. You shrugged off things that are inconceivable in any other city. Iron Beam running through the bedroom, three feet off the floor? No problem in New York! Kitchen designed for Hobbits? No problem in New York! A God-forsaken turquoise circular bedroom with nightmare acoustics? No problem in New York!

So you found a place, and it didn't seem to bother you that you would be trading your four bedroom house/pool/hammock/Koi pond for a one bedroom cellar, the only source of light being $20 quartz torchieres plugged into every available outlet. It didn't matter because it was an apartment in New York.

Setting the closing date for 9-11-01 seemed fine at the time. Because it was June. The most pressing news of the day seemed to be Christina Aguilera turning into a whore. And you really wanted to live in New York. So you sold your house. You bid farewell to the car you loved. Said goodbye to your friends. Packed up your career. Enlisted your fiancee.

And bought your plane tickets.

Now, you're no Miss Cleo. You had no idea that 11 September 2001 would be the worst day ever in the history of relocation. It seemed as good a time as any to move. Autumn was about to start. You loved autumn. For ten years you had no seasons. Now you were going to have them. Because finally, finally you were going to live in New York.

Of course, everything went fundamentally wrong in the most spectacular way possible. You refused to accept that God may have been sending you, and you alone, the most incredible, obvious, irrefutable, anti-relocation message in the history of warning people not to move to New York. But--

You wanted to move to New York.

Eventually, the air corridors reopened. And you came to New York. And you passed National Guardsmen on your way to the law firm where you would be purchasing your overpriced apartment. A law firm that was still covered with debris because it was near the core of the disaster. And you promptly signed yourself into your new home and ran right to it. Unpacked a house into a cubbyhole. Sure, you seemed genuinely surprised that the shoddy Mafia-owned construction company didn't exactly do what they said they would do to the apartment. But you were gleeful. Thrilled that finally, after all these years, you lived in New York.

And now you live in New York. You imbecile. New York City. Where your industry has imploded and been rendered so useless that you actually have offered to work for free. A city that has you perpetually running to the ATM to make up the $50 that vanishes from your wallet every time you leave your apartment. A city with a Mayor with odd priorities who whines and pouts and presides over a place so horrendously cash-strapped that you wake up every morning wondering what new tax law was enacted while you slept. You have an angry gay neighbor who is thrown into a hysterical rage if an Asian dares put a menu under his door. All your friends are poor. All viewpoints are spray-painted or affixed to any available surface. Your cat pines for the back yard. You see people who wear plastic bags on their hands. A fat lady on heroin. Union goons with giant, inflatable rats. Sure, you passed Nathan Lane once. So what! Does that make up for seeing some guy defecating on a staircase? I think not. And what people call the "energy and buzz" of the city is actually called "fire engines and honking" by the rest of the world.

But, you can't say a thing. Don't you dare. You wanted to live here. Now you do. If you don't like it, it's your own damn fault. Just shut up and drink your $14 martini. And don't even think of smoking that cigarette. You live in New York.



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