The Huge, Sudden Move We Made at the Start of the Summer

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Cool Newbie in Brooklyn Bridge Park, June 2013

When applying for my position as Oldest Social Media Intern Ever at Yelp, I had to create a Yelp account to show I could be proficient at all things Yelp. ‘Your Headline’ is part of a Yelp profile that at first seems like an afterthought, buried under 8 other fields on the form. But when you look at the public profile, it takes on an unanticipated prominence.

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As you see, right under the heavily filtered profile pic of me in a fedora I bought from a street vendor in the East Village for $15 [-5 cool points] sits my headline.

“Turning life upside down on a regular basis” 

It’s hokey, but quite accurate. After arriving in NYC six years ago, we’ve moved more times than I’d wish on my worst enemy (Siri). My career has been filled with more unpleasant surprises than Miley Cyrus’s Instagram feed.

But things seemed to settle down. We left the Upper East Side after Cool Newbie was born for the more affordable spaces of the North Bronx. After some of our trademark bouncing around, we found a place with such reasonable rent that we considered the unthinkable after a year: renewing a lease.

However, I started feeling like the groove we’d settled into was more of a rut. My commutes took upwards of an hour and a half of nose-to-armpit crowds on the subway. Our friends who lived in the neighborhood had either moved away or were about to. Cool Mum embarked upon epic pilgrimages just to take the Cool Bros to a playgroup.

The rent was sustainable, but it came at the cost of everything we loved about New York.

During a day in Park Slope, Brooklyn, Cool Mum asked some moms if they knew of any available apartments, though our (low) price range was pretty unrealistic for the area. Within hours, two moms separately emailed her about the same apartment. It was close to the celebrated Park Slope neighborhood, but featured a much lower rent. And it was a two-bedroom, whereas our four-member fam had pinballed around a one-bedroom for the past year.

It happened quickly. We saw the apartment, met the landlord and submitted an application. Somehow, they liked our single-income freelancing family and approved us. After spending three and a half years on the outskirts, we were on the cusp of planting ourselves back in the middle of the action.

But this was in the middle of May, and we’d need to move in at the end of the month. We braced to pay a substantial penalty for bailing on two weeks notice. We prayed to somehow vacate without losing a ton of money.

When CM called our management company, it went as expected. They said there was no way they could let us out on two weeks notice. Thirty days was the absolute minimum, and even that was doing us a huge favor with no one lined up to take our place.

But then with no prompting, the rep uttered a beautiful statement I’d associate more with a yoga instructor than a New York real estate management firm:

“You know what? We’re going to be flexible…”

And stretch they did, freeing us to move out in two weeks with no penalties and our security deposit intact. Just days before, we were wondering whether to start a fourth year in the Bronx, or to drift further away from the city. Suddenly, we were throwing together a move to the third borough of our NYC journey.

On May 29, Cool Boy’s birthday, the Cool Fam moved to Kensington, Brooklyn! [+15 cool points]

What does that actually mean? We’re still trying to figure it out, but it was just beginning of the most life-changing summer since a certain Newbie hit the scene.

4 notes on “The Huge, Sudden Move We Made at the Start of the Summer

  1. Amanda Matheny

    Sounds like you had a good experience, and good thing they were nice enough to let you out early. I’d be very careful with what landlords tell you though, because I broke a lease once but they told me as long as I pay something toward the reletting fees every month, not a fixed amount but just proving I’m paying it, they wouldn’t send it to collections. Within less than 2 weeks, I had collections calling me. They do not always live up to their word!

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