Monday, May 11, 2009

Brooklyn - Week Eight

Ron B. hit me up via IM to ask if I've found a job yet and it reminded me that I should probably write something up for SGM. I never set out to do any sort of "weekly update from Brooklyn" or "hillbilly in the big city" thing, but I did want to use the experiences as grist for regular SGM posts. It turns out that I'm pretty fucking lazy, though, so here we are at week 8 and I've written a total of three posts in that span.

Since Buck and Jake moved up here permanently a few years back, a couple of visitors making their first trips to New York City found themselves enchanted by the Big Apple and proclaimed their desire move here. What they didn't understand is something that Buck made a good point about relating to life in NYC: once you get into the grind of living here, it's pretty much like living anywhere on a day-to-day basis. You get up in the morning, you take care of your business, you fight traffic and lunacy to do it, you come home, you eat, you watch the TV, you fall asleep at night. Granted, aspects of daily living like fighting traffic and lunacy wind up amplified by cramming over 9 million people into an area just smaller than Washington County, TN. So after a couple of weeks, especially being unemployed and aimless, it just becomes life. I still see things that amuse me, yet wouldn't even hit the radar of a long-term New Yorker: for example, there's a filthy, enormous, disgusting bag lady in Manhattan so notable that the second time I saw her, I remembered where I saw her the first time. Now that I think about it, it's essentially the baglady from "Preacher" that Jesse Custer tracks down to learn about Cassidy's past. And the F Train is a fucking pain in the goddamn ass at least once or twice a week and sometimes multiple times during the day. NYC Veterans already know these things.

I didn't really go full steam into jobhunting for the first couple of weeks. The weather was shitty and I think I was sick for a few of the first days and really, who wants a fucking job? I was able to keep my head above water in terms of cash reserves and it looked like the worst thing that would happen is that by the end of this month I would be flat broke and heading back to Morristown to find a nice, quiet place to kill myself.

After sending out tons of resumes and applications via Craigslist, Monster, and Yahoo's HotJobs and getting almost zero response, plus twice wasting my time on interviews with bullshit street-pounding sales-scam jobs, I was finally able to find a nice position when I caught a last-minute Open House announcement on the day it was posted. For reasons that I'm not going to get into now, I'll keep the specifics about work to a minimum, but I guarantee at least one hilarious story when the time comes that I get fired or quit. I can, however, say that I the work itself is easy, it pays relatively well, and I work in DUMBO (Down Under the Manhattan Bridge Overpass), one of the trendiest neighborhoods in New York and by extension, the Universe.

Something I'm not entirely looking forward to is my upcoming battle with nicotine. You see, New York, both city and state, really want people to quit smoking. Not only does a pack of cigarettes in New York City, due to excessive sin taxes, run anywhere between eight and ten American dollars per pack, but the state has a program where they will give you a free box of nicotine patches to get you started on the road to beating your wife and children in a severe Nic Fit. I mean the road to kicking the tobacco habit. Given that I'm not interested in seeing my tobacco habit become more expensive than coke addiction, I signed up for the free box of patches. When my current carton of cigarettes runs out, which should be at the end of this week, I'm going to begin the long, painful road to punching the glass out of every car window between my apartment and the Avenue U subway station. I think I mean the long, painful road to kicking the tobacco habit, but I doubt it.

1 comment:

Nate said...

Good luck on the nicotine battle, for real. Not the easiest fight, for sure, but I think you can do it.

I've seen some people successfully "cold turkey" it, even while I personally coach clients in the taper down method.

Of course, the whole financial aspect of it would have anyone second guessing their commitment to smoking, nowadays. And I don't smoke, but I do cast a suspicious eye toward the overtaxing of cigarettes, while marijuana remains (as of this writing) illegal.