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35) Millennial Outlines How It's Possible To Live In New York City On A $25 an Hour Salary And Two Parents Who Pay For Everything She Needs

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Refinery29: I’m 21, Make $25 An Hour—& My Parents & Grandfather Give Me A Monthly Allowance

This is my favorite article that I’ve read on the internet this week.  Maybe entire month.  New York City millennial keeps a running diary on how she survives on a $25/hour salary as an intern in HR consulting.  That comes out to a  measly $748 a week, in the greatest (and most expensive) city in the world.  Tough!  Who could survive on that.

Well, someone who has parents and grandparents who pay for everything she needs.  But aside from that, to quote your favorite rapper, the struggle is real.

Here are my favorite suggestions on how you too can maximize your life in New York City with wise spending and making sacrifices:

-8:06 a.m. — I meditate and then pack up workout clothes and my briefcase. For breakfast, I make my classic avocado toast with feta cheese and a hard-boiled egg. I’ve found that this combo keeps me very satisfied until lunch.

-11:26 a.m. — I spend most of my morning working on a small project, online shopping, and journaling.

-12:22 p.m. — Whole group gets hungry, so we go to a local health restaurant for some food. I get a goat cheese and avocado wrap. $23

-12:30 p.m. — I check the Albert app I downloaded last month. It’s supposed to “smart save” for you by tracking how much you make and spend. So far, I’ve saved $113 to pay for my Equinox membership next month. It’s sick!

-1:05 p.m. — I sit around and do nothing until my 3 p.m. meeting.

-5:45 p.m. — I attend a new class at Equinox. It’s called The Muse, and it’s a mix between barre, dance, and pilates.

-2:05 p.m. — I arrive at my friend’s apartment to meet up before we drive to the Hamptons. Before the whole group convenes, I run to Sweetgreen to pick up lunch. I make a custom salad and add tofu, because I’m so into it these days. $11.70

-7 p.m. — I spend the rest of my afternoon packing for my Hamptons trip this weekend! My awesome friend always hosts my entire girl squad for weekends out there.

-11:12 a.m. — The girl squad gets ready to go out on my friend’s boat. Her dad offers to take us out on the water for the afternoon, and I couldn’t be more excited. I grew up boating and absolutely love the ocean. A few of us bring the dingy out so we can tube and drive up to the beach later. On our way to the marina, we pick up food. I get a piece of salmon, a freekeh salad, and a cauliflower salad. $22

-6:15 p.m. — My friend’s chef prepares vegan tacos, chicken tacos, and a veggie salad for all of us. Perfect pre-drinking meal. After dinner, we all get dressed up for a party tonight.

-1:06 a.m. — Time to go home. The music gets shut down, even though the guys who are throwing it have a permit. I open Uber and see that an XL costs $76, so I freak out. Maybe I’ll wait and see if someone else can stomach calling it?

– 2:30 p.m. — We spend the afternoon strolling around town. I get the most delicious froyo, which I haven’t had in forever. Vegan, gluten free, added sugar free mixed berry flavor with shaved coconut, choco chips, and candied walnuts. $8.75

-8:38 p.m. — Dinner is delicious, but the service is terrible and the food is overpriced. The edamame comes out last, and my steamed veggie dumpling appetizer is forgotten. We get individual checks because some of my friends ordered drinks and some of us got more food. My check is $45.09…I’m in shock, but swallow my pride because #HamptonsPrices. $45.09

-9:30 a.m. — I get a call from the building cobbler that my shoes are ready for pick up. I am SO content with how they turned out. Now they are perfect. I tip them extra because I’m extremely happy. $45.95

And on and on it goes.  A true picture of hardship.

Shout out to Refinery for highlighting the people who truly struggle among us, like the girl with $2K free rent and $1K allowance.

For comparison,

Here’s my running diary from 2009 when I launched Barstool New York for $25,000 a year.

Occupation: Blogger
Industry: Blog
Age: 22
Location: New York City, NY
Income: $25,000 year.
Paycheck Amount (Weekly): $384.
Additional Income: On top of my intern salary, my parents give me a $0 a month allowance along with a phone call saying “you seriously dropped out of fucking grad school for this shit?, and my grandpa is dead (#blessed).

Daily responsibilities:  Sit at home, Write 10 blogs, format all of KFC’s blogs while he made 200 grand as an accountant, get berated by Dave Portnoy, get called ugly by the internet.

Monthly Expenses
Rent: I live in a five bedroom/one den apartment. The total rent is $7,600. My share is $1,000 (my parents told me to fuck myself when I asked for some help) and my roommates’ shares are a lot more because they’re not poor. (They live in bedrooms with windows.)
Student Loan Payment: I don’t even know I can’t look at it it just takes auto deposits out of my account every month and overdrafts me.
Health Insurance: $0 (I’m on my parents’ plan because my dad pretends I work for his company just so he doesn’t feel too guilty if I die in the street and ambulances just pass me by because I got no insurance)
MoviePass: I watch free shit on TV.
Sugared + Bronzed Pass: What the fuck is this?  Like pussy care?  I shave my balls myself.
Equinox Membership: Lol.  I do pushups in the living room when everyone goes to their real job.
Phone Bill: $0 (I’m on my parents’ plan.)  Hell yeah.
Netflix, Spotify, Amazon: $30

And I am 99% luckier than most people out there.  I got to do a job that I loved that quickly evolved into something that paid a livable wage.  I had parents who I never asked for a dime from, but would be there to support me if something fell through and I ended up homeless.  I never had to truly worry I would be left out on the street if things didn’t work out.  Lot of people don’t have that safety net.

So just an FYI for all the 21, 22 year olds out there – you’re not alone if you’re not eating avocado goat cheese wraps on the way to your Equinox class before you head out to the Hamptons for the weekend where your personal chef will cook for you in between boat rides to Shelter Island.


The  most helpful part of the article was this disclaimer Refinery added to the bottom of the post.

If you are experiencing anxiety or depression and need support, please call the National Depressive/Manic-Depressive Association Hotline at 1-800-826-3632 or the Crisis Call Center’s 24-hour hotline at 1-775-784-8090.

Yeah, you just read 10,000 words on a girl claiming she’s struggling to get by as she gets Brazilian waxed in an Equinox spa.  Try not to kill yourself.