October 2, 2012

When I moved into my current three bedroom apartment in Astoria with two friends from college, I didn’t think I would be staying very long. I had plans to be an actor and I assumed I would book work easily and I would have to sublet while I worked out of town and then maybe I would move because New Yorkers are always moving and landlords jack the rent up, etc.

That was May 2005.

Then one roommate left, a subletter came in (she became my best friend, Alayna), another roommate left, another friend from college came in (sweet Troy, who stayed for 6 years), subletter, new roommate, subletter, moving out, moving in, around and around we go, apartment carousel.

Today is October 2012.

I am the last man standing.

I am moving out of my apartment next week.

Troy, the first friend I made in college, finally moved out this past spring and once that happened, the apartment stopped feeling like home. I’m friendly with my two current roommates but not close and I’d walk in the door and find no one was there to hear about my day and commiserate or make me laugh or show me a YouTube link or share a meal or light a candle and shake me up a cocktail.

I hadn’t realized, I guess, that my sense of home had more to do with a person and less to do with the physical space.

Ever since the spring, I’ve been itching to pack up and move on, to begin a new chapter. Specifically, with the person who feels the most like home to me.

Next week, I am doing just that.

My boyfriend and I are moving into our own new little home, just a few minutes away, in Long Island City.

We’ve been apartment hunting over the past month, each weekend dragging ourselves to neighborhoods everywhere, Brooklyn, Manhattan, Queens. We’d see a few places, then take a stroll around, then sit at a local bar and scribble on napkins, what we liked, what we didn’t, what our priorities were, what our money situation would have to be to make it happen.

In case you didn’t know, the rental market in New York City right now is the worst it’s ever been with a whopping 1% of all city apartments available for rent. ONE PERCENT!!! A lot of what we saw was overpriced and small (for example, a one bedroom on Avenue D across from the projects going for $2,900 HA HA HA KILL ME NOW!)

At one point my boyfriend wondered aloud, “Does EVERY kid with a trust fund move here!?”

Yes, yes they do.

Long Island City was the first neighborhood we looked at and we left a little disappointed because we loved it so much (amazing commute to the city, gorgeous views of Manhattan skyline, adorable shops and restaurants) but couldn’t afford the rent in the new high rise buildings that have taken over. (My boyfriend dubbed it Dubai. Everything is shiny!)

As luck would have it, this past Saturday we found a fantastic apartment in an older building there, second floor walk up, new kitchen and hardwood floors. It’s the coziest place on a beautiful street and it is so perfect for us that I’ve been holding my breath just in case the landlord changes his mind and yanks it away.

For now, it’s ours.

And so I leave you now, as I attempt to clean out my living space where I have accumulated um, all the things! over the past seven and a half years.

You guys, I still have CD’s. BROADWAY CD’s.


Also a DVD of Edward Scissorhands.


Also, here’s a card I found in my closet from my best friend JK for my birthday one year:

Also, here’s my headshot from 2003:



  • Andrea

    Congratulations, Laura! I’m so happy for you, and beyond excited to hear all about your new home!

    In a strange coincidence, my mother requested that I finally clean my stuff out of her basement, which is how I spent my entire weekend. I, too, have SO many Broadway CDs (7 recordings of Gypsy! SEVEN!!!) and *two years* worth of InTheatre magazine. HA! Remember that one? I thought of you many, many times this weekend as I uncovered artifact after artifact. Have fun packing and weeping with laughter as you look back at your past self.

  • TheSpectrum

    Oh man, I did just a piece of the closet last night and alternately laughed and cried at so many things. It’s a post unto itself, definitely forthcoming as I uncover more. Notes scribbled from friends in college classes that I’m no longer in touch with, birthday cards, ex-love notes, torn pages out of my journal. More than anything last night, I was so moved by my younger self. She struggled so much! And she was so sweet! Wish I could’ve told her that 29 year old her would be alright. She would’ve been delighted to know it all works out! At least…the love part. 😉 The rest of my life, WHO KNOWS?

    My bedroom in my parents’ house holds the bounty though, goodness from high school and younger. Cannot wait for THAT. InTheatre magazine for the win!

  • The Mom

    Um, about that closet and stuff in “my bedroom at my parents’ house”? It probably will be the novel or screenplay everyone knows you have inside you. Don’t hesitate planning a weekend or two to clean it all out or organize and store it all. Hey, 29 year old self, you’re doin’ ok.

  • GreenInOC


    Also? Love the message from “The Mom” – it made me weepy!

  • TheSpectrum

    Thanks! My mom is amazing.

  • Tim Eimiller

    I have hundreds of CDs. I’m pretty sure none of them are Broadway. Well… maybe The Who’s Tommy floating around somewhere.

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