Monday, May 14, 2007

The four-day marathon comes to an end!

I have an apartment!!! A studio with a separate kitchen and (amazingly) a non-sketchy bathroom. In Allston, literally two houses away from Brookline, two blocks away from the B line on the T, and a ten-minute walk to the C line and Coolidge Corner. The B line is kind of gross, but I'm okay with that, because I won't have to look at it outside my window.

The only weird thing I have to do is have a co-signer (thanks, Mom!), which is apparently standard practice for anyone who doesn't have a definite job in the state. Even if their bank account proves they can pay rent for several months. Hmmph. But whatever. I'm slightly miffed but can try to understand the landlord's logic behind that requirement. I also remember friends who were international students who had to scramble to get co-signers on Boston apartments after graduation.

However, the realtor, who was otherwise cool, was highly misinformed about the neighborhood. I kept saying "Isn't Allston just a neighborhood in Boston?" and she kept saying "No, it's its own city." But it's not. I will be in Ward 21, District 9, in terms of electing a councilor to the Boston City Council (which, btw, has both at-large and district representation, a system I supported but which failed by a citywide initiative in Seattle a few years ago). I still have to master the precinct system (it's an east coast thing, re-dividing burroughs into smaller burroughs), as well as possibly give up voting in state primaries because I grew up with the blanket primary and don't want to formally affiliate with any specific political party outside the general election. In other legislative news, I will be in the MA 8th congressional district ("8" has bad connotations for me, given the WA 8, but I can shake off Dunn and Reichert from that number.)

But the MA legislature's website kind of sucks. The districting process is wacked out, too. I've never understood states that have different districts for the House and Senate. (Why? Why?) However, I now know my state representative (just one) and senator.

So now I can start causing trouble. =)

If nobody minds crashing on the floor of a decent-sized studio, y'all are welcome, come September 1st!


Xtina said...

i have several things to say.

first: re: the apartment: yay! sounds like a sweet place in a sweet area -- i'm totally coming over!

second: re: the realtor: you're right, allston is far from it's own city. one time i was in a coffee shop and i saw a sign for an apartment for rent that said it was located in "hyde park, a suburb of jamaica plain" i was so angry, i literally almost called the poster to ask him/her if s/he was crazy or just dumb.

re: the primary stuff...the blanket system is kind of cool! but, while we don't have that, you don't have to be affiliated with a party. i'm listed as "unenrolled" and then i just tell the poll people which party i want to vote for in the primary and that i'd like to be put back to unenrolled in the end.

ok, that's all.

Torgo said...

Allston is a good place to be. Congrats on the bathroom. Sketchy bathrooms are the big thing in Boston. Except at Xtina's parents' place. Every other one, though, as far as I know.

Rainster said...

Yeah, I hear the bathrooms in those JP suburbs are nice. ;-P

KIDDING! Please still come over...

X -- So until you clarified this, several MA residents told me I'd have to affiliate with a party to vote in the primary. But of course, you're the uber-hip civically engaged resident. I just double-checked it, and the Secretary of State's office says nothing about it. Merci beaucoup for the clearing that up!