Seems it's all the rage these days to be writing about James.
A month or so ago, James was reading the popular NY Times Real Estate section feature entitled "The Hunt" – a collection of stories about New Yorkers and their experiences with trying to find an apartment in one of the toughest markets in the world.
This article in particular was about a 20-something year old girl who was complaining about her struggle to find an affordable (read: $1850 a month) one-bedroom apartment on the Upper West Side. In the end, she had to settle for a place that had only three windows and not even a working fireplace!
James laughed while he read this. Then James got mad. Recently, James had been through hell trying to an apartment of his own. And not hell as in "This place doesn't even have a doorman," hell as in "This place doesn't even have a door." So when James was done laughing, he sat down at his computer and wrote an email to Joyce Cohen, the author of the column. It started like this:
“Needless to say I can not find sympathy for the trials and tribulations of someone landing an amazing job that can afford them a one-bedroom on the Upper West 70's of Manhattan for $1,850. Regardless of the so called "fixer-upper" status. When you say things like, "She hung curtains on the three windows and put a candlescape in the fireplace," I begin to shake my head in disgust. Three windows? A fireplace? Even a non-working fireplace is still a fireplace in Manhattan, and windows are like rare portals to the world outside, rarely handed out in pairs let alone trios. So what of this tale of "ups and downs?" Well, I'll tell you one I think more relevant.”
What followed was a three page missal on how the other half of New York goes apartment hunting: Craigslist, scanning obituaries, begging friends for help, donating blood for security deposits, etc. He even included this picture of his cat, Jorge, battling a beast in his new apartment:
Surprisingly, instead of taking out a restraining order, Joyce Cohen wrote back to James. And what she said was, “I want to write an article on this.” And the finished product, entitled “Hoping for the Best? Bummer,” ran on page six of the Real Estate section of the Sunday Times yesterday.
So for all of you who don’t have six-figure incomes and can’t afford the Sunday Times, here’s a link to the online edition.
You’ll need to register (it’s free) if you aren’t already, but come on – you want anyone to take you seriously in life if you’re not registered for the NY Times website? That’s like saying you haven’t seen Schindler’s List; which I haven’t, but of course I lie to everyone who asks me if I have, solemnly bowing my head saying, “Yes, I have. What a tragic story . . .”
And if intellectual snobbism isn’t enough to make you register – there’s a video clip of an interview with James on the site in which he sits in his apartment and pets his cat like Dr. Evil. Trust me . . . it’s worth it.