1. Give me a 4-bedroom, 1-bathroom apartment so far uptown that it isn’t even considered Manhattan.
2. Give me roommates found on Craigslist.
3. Give me a closet big enough to hang three dresses.
4. Give me “roomie movie nights” and the kind of rom-coms only found in the deepest recesses of Netflix.
5. Give me a small cafe with watered-down iced coffee and strawberry sprinkle donuts for those rough mornings.
6. Give me a cubicle big enough to decorate with post-it notes and cut-outs of Drake from Complex magazine.
7. Give me a 9-5 that’s actually a 9-10.
8. Give me a part-time job serving in the Theater District that makes me want to punt small children, or bartending in The Heights on the weekends for all the I’m-in-the-Ivy-League Columbia students.
9. Give me student rush tickets to Broadway shows.
10. Give me happy hours with colleagues who complain about their below-average salaries and lack of health benefits.
11. Give me boozy brunches with old friends who visit from out of town and brag about their 401(k)’s.
12. Give me emails from college professors who congratulate me on “making it in the city” as I eat peanut butter and jelly for the fifth dinner in a row.
13. Give me cheap wine and even cheaper Chinese on a Tuesday night after a longer-than-usual day.
14. Give me 99-cent pizza at 2 AM while stumbling on the streets with “friends” I just met.
15. Give me craft beer, give me overpriced cocktails, and give me a bottle of champagne tucked under the sink.
16. Give me a sweltering hot summer when I can’t afford to run the AC.
17. Give me a frigid winter when the pipes freeze.
18. Give me a story.
19. Give me an experience.
20. Give me the pure, unadulterated, and uncensored version of New York City.
Then, when I’m nearing my 30s with $5 to my name, maybe I’ll consider moving somewhere else.