October 28, 2016

"Ms. Turner didn’t initially notice her apartment’s slanted floors. But now, despite her efforts to level the bed..."

"... 'it’s to the extent where I am afraid that it’s breaking my bed frame,' she said. Sometimes dresser drawers open on their own, 'kind of like it’s haunted.' She rearranged the furniture to account for the slope. Friends told her she should have tested apartments by bringing something to roll on the floor, like a pencil, but that never occurred to her."

From a NYT article about a young law school graduate searching for and finding an apartment in NYC. She wanted and got a small 1-bedroom where she could have a dog and that fit her budget of  $3,000 to $3,500 a month.

58 comments:

Bob Ellison said...

A dog?

Bob Ellison said...

And $3k/month? That's gonna require a good $80k salary.

sy1492 said...

At what point a person would rethink their life choices? You would think paying $3500 for a 1 bedroom apartment in a toxic and overcrowded nightmare of city would do it.

Curious George said...

"Bob Ellison said...
And $3k/month? That's gonna require a good $80k salary."

You really don't understand taxation, do you?

MadisonMan said...

How is this a story?

I understand the need to fill a newspaper with print, but I think a column of Passersby were amazed by the unusually large amounts of blood would have been more interesting.

Ignorance is Bliss said...

From a NYT article about a young law school graduate...

How can someone get so far into life and still not be able to level a bed in a way that does not put stress on the frame?

John said...

A pencil?

I suspect I could have a floor 15 degrees out of level and a pencil would not roll on it. (Pro tip: A golf ball will roll if even slightly off level)

I also suspect that if a floor was so far out of level that the dresser drawers opened by themselves, I would notice it. Perhaps this woman majored in (fill in the blank) Studies?

John Henry

rhhardin said...

Hill climbing is good exercise.

rhhardin said...

It might have been a former fun house.

rhhardin said...

One thing to check is whether clocks run slower. It might be a nearby black hole.

rhhardin said...

The only pencil test I'm aware of is for bras.

bagoh20 said...

For that money you could have twice the room on the beach in Los Angeles and no winter. Better would be to have that space someplace else and put $30K in the bank each year. That is not a smart woman. Educated, but not very well.

Big Mike said...

Back when she was an undergraduate no professor stood up and warned the class "Do not rent an apartment where the floors are so out of level that drawers open by themselves." So she just wasn't prepared.

OTOH, she probably had lots of professors tell her "Democrats go-o-o-o-d. Republicans ba-a-a-a-d." So she knows that, at least.

bagoh20 said...

When I was kid we had to roll out of bed uphill...both ways.

bagoh20 said...

Yea, her friends with the pencil idea sounds like a joke. A pencil is specifically designed not to roll. Then again they probably never actually saw one in the wild.

Bob Ellison said...

Luxury! We had to climb out of a rusty nail pit and sell the nails to tourists for a lunch of cow-dung and saltines.

Rob said...

Sweet doggy. Therefore I'm willing to cut her some slack.

Big Mike said...

I suspect this famous former NY law student would have known better than to rent an apartment with floors that weren't level.

(I also imagine she and Meade have a bet going as to when one of her commentators would link to this picture.)

Bay Area Guy said...

All the news that's fit to print?

Newsflash: Young woman has small, expensive apartment in Manhattan - and a dog.

EDH said...

Clearly the former Gotham City hideout of a villain from Batman. My bet is the lesser-known fiend, "Metrosexual."

And you thought it was just a Dutch Angle.

The Dutch angle, also known as Dutch tilt, canted angle, oblique angle or German angle, is a type of camera shot where the camera is set at an angle on its roll axis so that the shot is composed with vertical lines at an angle to the side of the frame, or so that the horizon line of the shot is not parallel with the bottom of the camera frame. This produces a viewpoint akin to tilting one's head to the side.

In cinematography, the Dutch angle is one of many cinematic techniques often used to portray psychological uneasiness or tension in the subject being filmed.

Dutch refers to German, which is called "Deutsch" in that language. It is not related to the Dutch people or language.

Robert Cook said...

"And $3k/month? That's gonna require a good $80k salary."

Much more than that, when taking into account the various withholdings that will reduce the paycheck considerably.

Robert Cook said...

"Yea, her friends with the pencil idea sounds like a joke. A pencil is specifically designed not to roll. Then again they probably never actually saw one in the wild."

Hey, it's the 21st Century! We have pencils with round barrels now!

Robert Cook said...

"How can someone get so far into life and still not be able to level a bed in a way that does not put stress on the frame?"

If she can afford $3500 for a 5th floor walkup in the East Village--and believe me, it will be a small apartment--she probably never had the life experience of placing coasters or folded bits of cardboard under bookshelves or chair legs or table legs to level the furniture.

holdfast said...

Starting salary at a NY BigLaw firm is $165k/year. Assume that insane taxation eats almost half of your AGI.

richlb said...

Marble. That's what I have in my toolbox to check for level floors. My buddy bought a house in the city (old but refurbished) and when you put a marble in the center of the kitchen floor it rolled hard to the corner. He had to rip everything out and level the floor even though it was "brand new" when they flipped it.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

I've heard tell that there are old taverns in Europe where the floor is sloped on purpose. You let loose under the table. Someone pitches a bucket or two of water every now and then and it all flows toward the drain in a corner.

Has the ring of falsity to it.

holdfast said...

I love dogs. Having a dog as a single first year associate is insane.

Robert Cook said...

"At what point a person would rethink their life choices? You would think paying $3500 for a 1 bedroom apartment in a toxic and overcrowded nightmare of city would do it."

NYC is overcrowded, but it is hardly toxic or a nightmare. It's a wonderful place to live if one can afford it. This requires either a great deal of money or that one have lived here long enough to have retained a manageable rent. Me? Let's just say that I would in no way be able to afford to move here now. I'll have to leave eventually, but I anticipate that with great regret.

bagoh20 said...

"Hey, it's the 21st Century! We have pencils with round barrels now!"

How can you screw up a pencil? Make it roll off the desk. Sounds like a leftist idea of an improvement.

Robert Cook said...

"How can you screw up a pencil? Make it roll off the desk. Sounds like a leftist idea of an improvement."

It's cheaper! Think of how many people you have to employ to shave the sides of all those pencils to make them hexagonal!

lemondog said...

Paying $36,000 in annual rent plus doggy care. She must be making some serious bread......

but I think a column of Passersby were amazed by the unusually large amounts of blood would have been more interesting.

NYT isn’t finished with the Donald Trump mutilation?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

I can't imagine anything more horrible, soul killing than living in New York (or any other large urban cesspool) except possibly being in prison. That would probably be worse....maybe. That people pay such exorbitant amounts to live in dilapidated spaces not much larger than a broom closet is literally insane.

The amount of money you make versus the lifestyle you can live is all relative I suppose. If you made half as much as this nitwit is supposedly making....say $80k a year in a medium sized town you could live in a nice house, with some open space around it. A yard to call your own. Have peace and quiet at night. Afford a decent vehicle to get around. Have actual parking. Neighbors who you may even get to know. Her dog would have a place to run and play instead of being a prisoner in the broom closet. (Personally, I think it excessively cruel to have pets in the city.)

People who make these choices should not be whining about how hard it is. She made her lopsided bed....now she has to lie in it....if she doesn't roll out at night onto the lopsided floor.

jaydub said...

Excellent article, except: (1) bed frames have leveling screws in each leg because few floors are exactly level, (2) bed frames are made of cast iron and would not be over stressed by a sloping floor and (3) the mattress sits on top of a rigid platform and neither mattress nor platform is likely to be affected by a slope unless it's steep enough to roll you out of bed.

BTW, there's a restaurant in St Gallen, Switzerland that is on the second floor of a building and the floor slopes 10 degrees front to back. Been that way for 600 years when the back wall settled shortly after construction, I'm told. All the tables and chairs have legs cut to match the floor slope.

Anyway, she should quit worrying about the floor's affect on the bed and concentrate on the ramifications of wearing a bra.

damikesc said...

Does nobody find the whole "3,000 a month" for that shit nonsense a bit much? How can a city claim to be "compassionate" while pricing housing so far outside the means of almost anybody.

One plus, "flyover" country clearly doesn't have the monopoly on fucking idiots.

PB said...

How hard is it to level furniture? Why would you not? It's better for the furniture.

Michael K said...

I had a bluff top house in southern California 30 years ago that was on a 200 foot cliff at the beach. We had a landslide in a very wet winter. I got up one morning and the house was 7 feet from the cliff. 20 feet had gone down the hill in the night. We had to rebuild the hill and, when we were almost finished, the contractor noticed that the house was not level (It had been built in the 1930s) and suggested we level it as we put the new foundation on the ocean side. We put house jacks under the low end and started to jack it up to level and all the windows popped out. It was a mess.

Sometimes level is too much trouble. I hadn't noticed it before.

EMD said...

"toxic and overcrowded nightmare of city would do it."

A lot of people (usually younger) relish in the energy of a city like New York. Always open, so to speak. There's a ton of people, sure, but a lot of people doing "interesting" things all the time.

It can wear one out (I lived in LA for awhile ... loved the energy, but it's lower density makes it waaaay less crowded) and there becomes a need to "get away" every once in awhile. The energy is great to feed off of to help keep on motivated (especially if you are pursuing creative interests) but I suppose it can be soul-crushing to realize that there's so much relative failure built-in around you by thousands upon thousands of people with the same unrealized hopes and dreams.

Robert Cook said...

"I can't imagine anything more horrible, soul killing than living in New York (or any other large urban cesspool) except possibly being in prison."

Apparently, you've never lived in New York or any other large urban city and you've never been in prison.

dbp said...

The pencil idea could only have come from someone who hasn't worked with physical things much. Most pencils are not round, if mechanical they usually have a pocket clip. If you get a round one, then you still have to lay it on the surface correctly: You could have a large slope and not know it if you put the pencil's axis along the slope. A ball, marble or other spherical object is what one would use.

Peter said...

I was once offered an apartment that had obviously be made by enclosing a porch. And, yes, the slant originally built into the porch was the giveaway. Fortunately I had other options.

But, although New York City is geographically bounded (and commuting options are limited because four of the City's five boroughs are on islands), 70+ years of rent control and rent stabilization limit options for newcomers and cause inefficient use of housing (the children are grown and mommy divorced daddy and now she's alone in a five room apt., but who gives up a reasonably priced apt in New York?) and these price controls also make it difficult to replace small, old buildings with new, larger ones (because the tenants don't have to move). And then add in union-controlled construction, height zoning, some of the country's toughest building codes makes new construction costly.

So, Welcome Neighbor! That'll be $3,000./month.


MadisonMan said...

I did not miss that she paid a month's rent to someone just to find her an apartment (that she doesn't like!)

Conclusion: this unfortunate woman with slanted floors is too willing to throw money away.

Eric the Fruit Bat said...

I had a friend, a single woman in her twenties, who moved back to the suburbs after maybe five years in the city. She said, "I only moved to the city because I thought I'd get more dates."

Robert Cook said...

"Does nobody find the whole '3,000 a month' for that shit nonsense a bit much? How can a city claim to be "compassionate" while pricing housing so far outside the means of almost anybody."


How can a city be compassionate? There are compassionate people in the city, and there are people who are not compassionate, just like anywhere else. As for the high prices to rent or buy here, that's a function of supply-and-demand...you know, blessed capitalism! There is more demand than there is supply of places to live, so prices rise.

That said, housing is not quite "outside the means of almost anybody." Even with the high percentage of wealthy residents, the majority of residents of New York's five boroughs are working people, with a citywide median income of just over $50,000.00. So, how do people live here? The cost of rent varies from neighborhood to neighborhood, so some people do have affordable rents; some have rent controlled or rent stabilized apartments, (not a majority of residents); some people live in apartments where several people are working and contributing to the rent.

But, it is more difficult to move in here than most places in America, indisputably.

Achilles said...

I fixed up a 4+ bedroom 2800ish square foot house in the Newcastle/factoria area in Seattle. $3300 a month. Just finished a 5 BR 3 bathroom half a mile south of that in Newcastle near Seattle. I think it is listing at $2500 a month.

I understand why you would live in New York. I don't understand why New Yorkers allow the wealthy people who own most of the housing there to block competition using government regulations.

Jim said...

New York is one of the worlds most interesting and exciting cities. Especially if you are young. Energy and excitement, and change. And the chance to measure yourself against others. Lots of obvious downsides too, but you are only young once. The experience of living in a large city, especially one as unique as NY, is a once in a life time thing.
I have been there twice, as boy, and a teenager. Was astounded by the blight, poverty and noise. And totally taken in by the excitement, the architecture , the contrasts in people and parts of the city.
Saw Barbara Streisand in Funny Girl on Broadway. Those days, we dressed up for it. Was 14 at the time, and was absolutely blown away by the experience.

Achilles said...

"That said, housing is not quite "outside the means of almost anybody." Even with the high percentage of wealthy residents, the majority of residents of New York's five boroughs are working people, with a citywide median income of just over $50,000.00."

Progressives run New York. Of course income disparity is greater there. The progressive goal is to make a permanent wealthy upper class and a permanent underclass.

marybeth said...

Bob Ellison said...
Luxury! We had to climb out of a rusty nail pit and sell the nails to tourists for a lunch of cow-dung and saltines.

10/28/16, 8:05 AM


I had to get up in the morning at ten o'clock at night, half an hour before I went to bed.

gerry said...

but I suppose it can be soul-crushing to realize that there's so much relative failure built-in around you by thousands upon thousands of people with the same unrealized hopes and dreams.

Do You Know the Way to San Jose?

Dust Bunny Queen said...

@ Robert Cook

Apparently, you've never lived in New York or any other large urban city and you've never been in prison

I lived in San Francisco for quite a few years...Richmond District and Mission District. So I know the urban cesspool. It has only gotten worse since I left. Also live in LA for short while. While I haven't been in prison, I know people who have and can make some comparisons.

It is easy to stay out of both...the city and prison.

You shouldn't assume. You know what they say about that.

Michael K said...

I think Cookie knows what both are like.

Molly said...

The budget is doable on a salary of $165K.

$80K for taxes.
$85 takehome

3.5 x 12 = $43 rent (unclear to me if this includes some or all utilities)

2.5 x 12 = $30 "bare essentials" including utilities, cable, internet, cell phone, food, transport.

$12K for fun, savings, other $1000 per month.

Roughcoat said...

Back in my youth, when I lived in Denver, I became an advertising copywriter because it was at the time the only profession that would pay a decent wage for writing. I was an indifferent ad-man. Once, a creative director told me that if I really wanted to get anywhere in advertising I should move to New York. I replied that there was no way in hell that I would move to New York.

I did not get very far in advertising.

Robert Cook said...

"You shouldn't assume."

I didn't; I said "apparently," which is different.

Static Ping said...

NYC's rents are so high partially because the rent control creates fake scarcity, and partially because the area is in high demand. High demand, artificially reduced supply, high prices. Economics 101. I'm actually surprised she managed to find a room that good at that price. It also drives up home prices in the surrounding areas of northern New Jersey, western Connecticut, and "upstate" New York (which is essentially anywhere that is not NYC or Long Island.)

Eliminating rent control would certainly bring some sanity back to the market, but it may have unintended consequences. I'm not sure how much of the working class could remain in the city if they had to pay normal rents and it is a difficult city to commute. As much as some would like it to be, the city cannot expel the peasants and function only with rich residents. Then again, young college kids trying to make their big break probably would provide an endless supply of waiters and bus drivers and such.

Titus said...

flyovers you pay for location, location, location.

demand is through the roof in the fab coastie elite cities and lots of people want to live here.

So you pay for it.

free market baby!

the wait list for my loft building is HUGE!

i get gift cards weekly from brokers letting me know they have a buyer who wants in the building and willing to pay 200k over the selling price in the building-please bitch-NO!

It really is so much more fabulous living in a hot coastie city where people are educated and liberal.

The thought of living in an area with a bunch of old fat pasty whitey's makes my skin crawl.

damikesc said...

free market baby!

Government suppressing supply tremendously is "free market"?

Eliminating rent control would certainly bring some sanity back to the market, but it may have unintended consequences. I'm not sure how much of the working class could remain in the city if they had to pay normal rents and it is a difficult city to commute. As much as some would like it to be, the city cannot expel the peasants and function only with rich residents. Then again, young college kids trying to make their big break probably would provide an endless supply of waiters and bus drivers and such.

It might also inspire new building of dwellings. As it stands now, an idiot is the only one who'd build an apartment complex in NYC these days.

Robert Cook said...

"It might also inspire new building of dwellings. As it stands now, an idiot is the only one who'd build an apartment complex in NYC these days."

Oh, there are plenty of apartment building being built in NYC right now. However, they're all aimed at millionaires and billionaires. Now, a city of only rich people would be a toxic nightmare!

Robert Cook said...

"NYC's rents are so high partially because the rent control creates fake scarcity...."

There are very few apartments left in NYC that are rent controlled. The number of apartments that are rent stabilized is larger, but still less than 50% of all apartments in the city. The people who live in these apartments are mostly the working people who make up the majority population of the city, and who work the office jobs and service jobs and who wait tables and ring up purchases at retail stores. Removing rent controls would cause a forced exodus of millions of people.