When non-city dwellers see a New York apartment, they’re often shocked. “How can you live in a place that’s so small?!”
First of all, everyone who lives in NYC knows at least one other person who lives in a smaller apartment than their own. Second of all, look at everything that goes on outside the apartment!
Truth is, we’ll take our tiny apartments in New York City over a bigger place anywhere else.
We understand that not everyone understands our lifestyle. It’s a give and take relationship: we give the city our personal space and we take the infinite possibilities, opportunities, and experiences it offers us back.And anyway, if I had a bigger apartment, it would only lead to trouble. Enjoy it? Nah, these are the things that I would actually end up doing.
1. Be way messier
I’m not the most organized person when it comes to my personal living space. I’m not dirty, but I am definitely untidy. There is a difference.
In a small apartment, everything has a specific place to go—otherwise it doesn’t all fit. Instead of leaving the jigsaw pieces of my belongings scattered everywhere, as I inevitably would if I had the room to do so, everything has to be kept in a (relatively) organized puzzle.
2. Buy big house plants... that I would inevitably kill
I would love to have house plants! Cacti! Ficuses! Ferns! Rainbow floral arrangements on every surface!
Unfortunately, I do not have the floor space or the surface area to accommodate all of the flowers I would like. Which is honestly fortunate for the flowers, because I’m a notorious plant killer.
3. Turn my dining room into a walk-in closet
I have a lot of clothes. Crucial floor space in my bedroom is taken up by a free-standing clothing rack (in addition to my regular built-in closet) and my massive dresser, not to mention the jeans and sweaters piled on my only shelving unit.
If I had a dining room, it would 100% be converted into a massive walk-in closet. Who needs a dining room? I haven’t had a real kitchen table in the past four years; why fix what isn’t broken?
4. Talk about hosting a housewarming/dinner party but never actually do it
Hypothetically, having the space to invite friends over is lovely.
Realistically, I cannot cook, I don’t really enjoy cleaning to meet guest-inspected standards, and I definitely wouldn’t risk anyone sitting on my bed with their shoes on.
5. Work out in my living room...rarely
One of the disappointments I originally had about my current bedroom is that there is not enough floor space for a yoga mat. If only!
If only there were space for a yoga mat, I’d do whatever ab workout is trendy on Cosmo twice, then forget about it/give up until the next flash phenomena shakes its flat stomach across my Twitter feed in a month.
6. Leave shoes EVERYWHERE
Apologies to past and current roommates: I have a bad habit of taking my shoes off in the living room and leaving them there. Even though I built a shoe organizer with my bare hands (and a hammer), I have a lot of shoes!
If my apartment had more space, that would ultimately boil down to more space for my booties/Minnetonkas/sandals to lie discarded for days.
7. Stress out about artwork / decorations
When I moved in with a male roommate last fall, he figured I would bring a touch of interior design sense to our apartment. Lol sorry, not my strong suit.
If I actually had the space to create a cohesive aesthetic of my own, I’d end up ordering tacky brightly colored disposable wall decals, some quote in neon lights, and too many mismatched throw pillows. Tbh, I don’t need the burden of decorating right now.
8. Make really unnecessary purchases
If I had the space to fill, trust me, I’d fill it. But that doesn’t mean it would look good. Or be fiscally responsible.
9. Take way too much random crap from my parents’ house
Again, see above. I still have a ton of stuff at my parents’ house—thanks, Mom and Dad!—and if I had the space for it, I’m sure I’d take it off their hands (like...75% sure).
But a 20-something woman doesn’t really need a lot of the stuff an adolescent girl did, so this would not necessarily be a good thing.
10. Stay in more
Realistically, I don’t need more space. Do you know what I do when I’m at home? Watch Netflix, shower, and sleep. Why would I need more space for those activities?
If I want space, I go find it. Outdoors/at bars/in museums/wherever the subway takes me.