Zillow Listings of New York City (2024)

Ooh, honey, look at this one. Fourteen-foot ceilings, southern exposure, only a second-floor walkup. It’s a tiny bit above our price range, but the monthly maintenance is low. I guess it’s a little on the small side, but there’s something kind of romantic about the shower being in the kitchen. Kind of Parisian, you know? Like our own little artist’s studio in Montmartre!

Or, hey, this one’s gorgeous. Fully renovated prewar, wraparound patio, doorman. Yes, it is nine times our budget. I noticed that. I just thought maybe we could take your stepdad up on his offer. Use the interest-free loan to get something we really love.

You’re right, bad idea. I agree: why should we give Bill that power over us? Even if it does give us the power to live where we want. No, you’re right. He’s not your dad. Let’s stick to the budget. Here’s a cute one I found that’s the right price: great light, updated appliances. It’s a handicapped bathroom in a WeWork. Only a block off the 6 train!

Hmm. Just for fun, let’s see what our budget gets us outside the city.

Holy sh*t. For a fraction of our budget, we could get an entire Trappist monastery in Junction City, Missouri! We could use the rest of our money to renovate! And get this: it includes a peach orchard! We could start a pie business!

Wait, forget the pie thing. Check this out: we can buy the mayor’s mansion in Cairo, Georgia, for forty-five dollars! I’m going on Kayak. All right, you can’t fly direct to Cairo, but it’s only a brisk three-hour-and-fifty-seven-minute drive from Atlanta. We’d just hop on a plane to Atlanta and cruise on down to Cai-town. How fun is that? It’s a hundred and sixty acres, babe! Just think what we could do with all that space. We could put in a pool. We could even host your mom and Bill for Christmas. “Christmas in Cairo!” Kind of has a nice ring to it, huh?

Where are you going?

O.K., I’ll stop looking outside New York. You’re right. It’s insane.

I know we said a two-bedroom was a must, but this one-bed checks off some of our essentials: A block from the subway. In-unit laundry—

You raise a good point: what if we want to have a family?

Honey, I love the way you’re thinking. If we have a family move in with us, we could rent them the office and the guest bath, and then we could afford a nicer place!

Oh. You mean, like, a baby. Right... right! Wow, did I ever luck out in the husband department. The fact that you want to start this conversation makes me feel so seen. I’ve actually already done a little research. A good, clean, disease-free white baby can fetch up to 90K on the open market. Now, a bank deposit of that size will raise some eyebrows, so we’ll have to make a bunch of small deposits over a period of several—

Right, of course. You mean a baby to love and raise.

Wait a second. How did we miss this? Check out this two-bed between Columbus and the Park. It’s got working fireplaces and a patio, and, holy sh*t, it’s under a mil! The only thing is that you have to sign a contract agreeing to euthanize yourself on your forty-fifth birthday. Apparently, the sellers are pretty serious about overpopulation. I’m going to e-mail the broker and see if they’d be willing to wiggle on the forty-five thing. But, Jesus, look at that rainfall shower!

Ugh, it’s gone. All-cash buy, too. This town. O.K., let’s take a hard look at our finances and figure this out.

So, according to Chase.com, we have eighty-four thousand dollars in savings—if you count the eighty thousand dollars I’m getting from Nana whenever she dies. So, if we’re just talking current liquid assets, that’s 4K. I suppose we should keep in mind that we haven’t paid rent this month. In which case, I think we have just enough money to go to Chipotle this evening, if neither of us gets guacamole.

You know how much I loved Princeton, but I’m really starting to have second thoughts about having gotten a Ph.D. in improv. I know it’s dumb to even mention this, but what exactly were the terms of Bill’s offer again? I seem to remember something about an all-cash, no-interest loan to buy any apartment on the Upper West Side that’s within walking distance of him and your mom, right? Right. No, I agree, totally irrelevant!

No, I’m not texting. Really. All right, very funny. Give me my phone back. So what if I was texting with Bill? He was asking me about... stuff.

What did I mean by “Making progress, he’s about to crack”? It’s an inside joke, O.K.?

Fine. You caught me. I know he’s a weird, controlling asshole, but he’s a billionaire, you idiot! And he’s basically offering to buy us an apartment! You wanna have kids?! Where are we gonna put kids? In a f*cking drawer, like we’re in a f*cking Neil Simon play?

I. Teach. Improv. To. Adults! You’re. A. f*cking. Playwright!

Wake up, Ethan. If we want to live in New York, we belong to Bill. But here’s some good news: I just remembered that I have a coupon for a free sub at Jersey Mike’s, because I got sick there last time. Let’s live large, baby!♦

Zillow Listings of New York City (2024)


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