Staten Island / Aubade

City living is now stratospheric.

In the 1980s, it might have been possible to live in Manhattan. Yet you have to do what’s right for you not to follow a trend. The goal is to not go into debt.

I have no regard for the Williamsburg hipster life, now out of reach for most young people. I’m also not a flannel-wearing, chai-tea imbibing gal.

Staten Island was the place to be if you couldn’t afford to live in the city. The rent was low. You could take the ferry into Manhattan and come home at 3 a.m. on the tiny Alice Austen boat. A woman with silver hair read my fortune on that ferry once.

This blog entry is a paean to doing your own thing even if it’s not deemed cool or hip to live or be or act that way. I lived on Staten Island at a time when everyone else coveted living in the city. A secret cachet exists when you do your own thing like this.

You have to trust your instinct or intuition about what makes sense to do.

I spent Saturday nights at Millard Fillmore’s: a restaurant where you could order the Blooming Onion. I and another woman had fallen in with a band of outsiders led by a guy who was a dead-ringer for Michael Stipe.

Why be forced to take in a roommate to pay the rent in a ruinous apartment? Do you want to be stiffed with a $200/telephone bill when the roommate fails to pay up? Do you want to run out of toilet paper or milk because the roommate doesn’t buy anything when it’s their turn?

Gaggled-up living isn’t what it’s cracked up to be.

This blog entry is my humble abode to a time and place that is not ever to be again.

I urge everyone reading this blog to consider your options. Going into debt isn’t cool. It isn’t necessary to go into debt to live on your own.

Consider the road less traveled.

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Author: Chris Bruni

Christina Bruni is the author of the critically acclaimed memoir Left of the Dial. She owns a resume writing and career help business. She contributed a chapter "Recovery is Within Reach" to Benessere Psicologico: Contemporary Thought on Italian American Mental Health. As well as an author and activist, Bruni is an artist and a fitness buff.

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