Friday, June 10, 2016

Chic Prison-Style Manhattan: Manhattan Insanity in the 21st Century

With apologies in advance to the New York Times and any number of offended Manhattan-ites/ers/ists/men/women, I post this, my first of my series entitled Manhattan Insanity in the 21st Century
If the toilet was out in the room next to the bed, a tenant might complain. It's hidden, of course. But if you can still pack 6 little women over for dinner in an apartment the size of a large storage unit in the suburbs and pay $2446 to $3195 a month, you are one of the lucky ones. Ten by 30 square feet - it's the minimum mandated size for apartments by city ordinance, and not much larger than some of the big freight elevators I repaired at the dying steel mills in Pittsburgh. And in the one shown in the New York Times video, the women inch by each other for a potty break in their sanitized exclusive prison for the intellectual, Carmel Place. There's probably more space than that around town for each and every single sewer rat to live quite comfortably. With all the extra money they can manage to save, maybe they can buy one of the "Drive de Cartier" watches being advertised in the accompanying NYTimes video. After all, a two thousand dollar watch won't take up much space.

These people are the ones who will vote for Hillary Clinton. Everything in the apartment is as scripted as the way Hillary looks, speaks and acts. You've got to move one thing to get to another. And all the gals look like they are ready to flee the prison as soon as dinner is over. That is perhaps the only vestige of humanity I can find struggling in any of them, at least from their expressions.

And it is hardly an irony that in the same town, by virtue of his wealth, Donald Trump resides in a Manhattan prison of his own, one of Versailles proportion. A fifteen thousand dollar book, Vogue Living, sits on the central table. It looks interesting. I wonder if Donald could lend it to me.

If there is even a slice of Americans who can relate to this prison life, it must be women who are happy to live in such surroundings. Urban Americans have largely turned inward from the years where developers raped the entire country of farm land and fossil fuels for suburban parking lots, endless shopping centers and 4000 square foot suburban McMansions, cheap-ass condos and endless neighborhoods of identical apartment boxes. American Ugly for all.

One thing, however, has remained exactly the same, whether it is in the tiny living or the large living. Banks and corporations still rule the country, down to the last square foot, and it is in the existential metaphor of the mortgage or rent payment to the owner's bank that both living-large and living-small people can understand. Inner cities are no different from the clogged suburbs. Big city centers have gone insane as they gentrify. Tiny, skinny, lives stuffed with tiny plates of tiny dishes. It's the full catastrophe, a total washout of anything traditionally American. This build-down chic-prison mentality is more akin to the billionaires who build Shanghai ghettos than anything most Americans like me would recognize.

But then, I don't live in a box. Well, yes I do. One I built myself, suitable for the desert pack-rat I am.

I have a lot of faith in America, but not much in this tiny chic-prison life. Anything thought up by an OZ-land developer for intellectual munchkins is bound to be deafening to the human spirit; yet the resiliency of the thin and hardy new feminine elite is truly amazing, as these six women must be proving.

My bet is that all of these women are much better humans than I am, even if they hate men (but I doubt they do). They enjoy more with less stuff, even if it takes them 10 to 20 times my puny retirement income to enjoy it. They watch their weight with a microscope, but dress like charlatans, gypsies and hippies. That's kind of cool. After all, 60,000 of them applied for residence for one of the 19 "affordable" comfy prison cells in Carmel Place, and that surely means something. The lowered rent is $914 to $1,873 monthly. Whew!

All of them probably use the 10 dollar word "mysogynist" and they can surely spell it correctly, but it's doubtful that any of them have ever uttered the word "misandrist". After all, there are a lot more woman haters than man haters, aren't there?

I suppose I get new hints every day of the kinds of places I do not fit in. Carmel Place is certainly one of them. As my stepmother used to say, "Each to their own, George". She was a lot smarter than I gave her credit for being. But I think she would be rolling in her grave to see what her old "fabulous" New York has become. But maybe not. I never really did understand women too much.