If they're lucky and do land a job, it's probably a hefty commute away. But they could care less. As Henry Grabar documents in Salon, city apartment living, not fixing up This Old House, is the new cool. After all, the "Seinfeld" crowd did apartment living.
We Baby Boomers always recognized that the with-it were apartment dwellers. Luci and Desi lived in an apartment. So did Ralph and Alice, as well as Mary Richards and Rhoda.
The blands lived in single-family homes. They ranged from Jim Anderson of "Father Knows Best" to the Nelsons in "Ozzie and Harriet." Later bland turned to unhappy in "Desperate Housewives" in their detached houses on Wisteria Lane and sinister in "The Sopranos" and "Breaking Bad."
At my sister's wake in 2001, everyone from the old tenement neighborhood in Jersey City, New Jersey gushed how those were the happiest days of their lives. Living on top of each other in attached tenement buildings, and running into each other on the four-floor walkups, everything was transparent. No one could be a secret ax murderer or sex addict, as we discover about those middle class folks in suburban housing.
In 2004, I finally returned to leasing apartments. Each and every day is full of gossip.