Fun fact: After college I moved to New York City by myself, because, #bigdreams. Anyway, initially, I lived alone in a shotgun apartment on the border of Brooklyn and Queens. I quickly came to the realization that finding your people post college is hard. Really hard. And, I decided to find some roommates and move into the city proper.
Pictures of my first appartment in all of its Ikea glory:
I am not actually sure how people find roommates these days– Craigslist? Facebook? But, back then (circa 2006) Craigslist was king. Cue an application process that was seriously more thorough than the job I landed as a medical device rep (kidding, but almost not). One must spend countless hours constructing the perfect introductory email–witty, smart, and interesting, but not pretentious– in order to be noticed in a sea of potential candidates. If you are lucky, you are then invited to the next round, aka, the “open house” where you must do whatever necessary to catch the attention of those doing the vetting. All to compete for an 8×8 (not a typo) room, in a non-doorman walk up, with an astronomical rent attached.
After completing said tasks and being invited to the next round, I took a ride on the 6 train to the Upper East Side,
buzzed walked in because the buzzer was broken, and knocked on the door. Enter my “this has got to be a joke” face. When I walked into the apartment there were seriously 30 people there. Not an exaggeration. I promptly found the freshly baked cookies, decided this was a waste of time, and went to find the “vetters” to say thanks, but no thanks.
I waited in line to meet the host that was closest to me after claiming my cookie and we engaged in some small talk. I said goodbye without meeting the second roommate and promptly returned to crafting witty application emails on Craigslist. I wasn’t convinced the girl would remember that I was there, let alone my name (there wasn’t even a sign in sheet for 30 people!!!) So, imagine my surprise when I got a “call back” to have coffee with the roommate I didn’t meet. I feel this story might be dragging and I know you are dying to know what happened. Spoiler alert, I met the other roommate, we hit it off and as I was walking home after the meeting my phone rang and Aleks and Amanda cordially invited me to be the third roommate. #lifechangingmoment
These ladies became two of my best friends and it really is one of my coolest stories to date. We had (have) a friendship that changed my whole NYC experience for the better and I will forever be grateful for Craigslist and Amanda and Aleks’ ability to remember every single person who walked through the door that night.
While this story is interesting on it’s own (I think?). It is not the point of this post. The point is to lay the ground work for a real life book that was just published recounting our time on E 89th street. Match Made in Manhattan is Amanda’s debut novel about a female protagonist who gets dumped by her long term BF and decides to jump into the word of online dating at it’s peak in the early 2000s.
I’m in the book (I know, it’s kind of a big deal) as the character (wait for it), “Nicole.” Yup, that’s actually me (only fictionalized). It’s everything. I mean I know I am biased, but it is so so good! What started as a memoir of Amanda’s dive into Match.com, developed over time and at editors suggestions into a fictionalized account of actual people and events.
I am beyond proud of my friend and feel so lucky to have played such an important role in that chapter (see what I did there?) of her life. So, in honor of Amanda’s amazing accomplishment, I am giving away 3 personalized signed copies of the book! Simply enter below. The contest ends on January 22nd. Seth and I are flying to NYC for the book launch where I will have Amanda sign copies for the winners.
On that note, if you are local to NYC or surrounding areas, you are officially invited to Amanda’s launch at The Strand Bookstore on January 24rd at 7pm. (That’s kind of a big deal for a first time author).