A New York Real (Estate) Story

Since so many of you seemed to like my story about life in NY from yesterday, I thought I’d share a little excerpt from a longer “creative non-fiction” (which means kinda sorta true) piece I’ve written called “Ways in Which Rich Women Are Different from You and Me.”

See, many moons ago, my kids went to the ultra-luxe Nursery School at The 92nd St Y.  Don’t be fooled by the “Y” part.  This place is filled with the fanciest (Jewish) New Yorkers New York has to offer.  What was I doing there?  Well, let’s just say I felt a bit like a social anthropologist.  Lots of astonishing things were seen and said at that school. Imagine a place where women wear $150,000 dollars worth of jewelry to pick up their kids from a playdate and you get the idea.

This particular story – though it’s written in the second person – as is the rest of the piece from which it is excerpted –  is mostly, almost totally true. Really.


You live on the Upper West Side in a lovely doorman building with fresh flowers in the lobby and trash removal service from outside your back door three times a day.  Your 2000 square foot apartment has three bedrooms, three baths, eat in kitchen, play area, sunken living room and large dining area.  Your kitchen has stainless steel appliances and stone countertops.  Your herringbone wood floors are polished a suitably luxurious shade of brown.

A rich acquaintance comes by with her daughter, Queen Elizabeth Goldberg (not her real name), for a playdate.  You have seen her apartment, a 6500 square foot duplex on Park Avenue with a sweeping staircase, custom designed wall to wall carpet, and a $12,000 custom-built professional six-burner stove-top that has never been used for anything other than boiling water for tea.

Upon entering your apartment, she looks around and asks, “Is this adequate with two children?  Do you find this space to be adequate?” She seems genuinely concerned for your well-being, and sincerely worried about leaving Queen Elizabeth here in this hovel.

To her, this is slumming.

And there it is.  Another amazing, horrible, astounding, hilarious (if you know how to look at it) side of living in NY.

Man, I love this town.

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