Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Brooklyn Skillshare and Brooklyn Brainery

One of the things that I love about living in New York is that if you have an interest in anything, you can most likely find other people here who share your interests. Something that I didn't know before I moved here was that if you don't have an interest in something, it's really easy to find new things to be interested in here. Did that make sense? I hope so, but let me explain.

Back in October, I heard about this awesome program called Brooklyn Skillshare that was taking place in (duh) Brooklyn. A warehouse in Brooklyn, to be more precise. Basically, it was a day full of classes on some pretty random topics taught by local people who simply wanted to share their skills. The classes ranged from Henna Tattoos to Maintaining Your Bicycle to Digital Music Recording to Raw Foodism, so there were plenty of things to interest both me and my boyfriend. We paid the suggested donation of $10 to get in, and learned a lot about some random topics that we never would have thought to pursue on our own. It was a pretty awesome day, and only cost us $10 plus the subway fare. How else would I have discovered the many wonders of the raw food diet? Who would have known?

Now, the idea has expanded into Brooklyn Brainery! This month is the first "semester" of Brooklyn Brainery classes, which meet once a week for four weeks. Each class is an hour and a half long, giving you six hours of learning time on one subject. They are still taught by locals who are sharing their passions, and some of this semester's subjects include "Meat" (yes, seriously.), "Scents and Sensibility", and "Optical Collusion". The classes are only $25 for all four weeks, so if you love learning it is well worth the cash.

Check out the schedules for Brooklyn Brainery here, and keep your eye on the Brooklyn Skillshare page for the next event date!

Monday, January 25, 2010

Frugal Living is Hard to Do (But Not Really)

If you've ever been a college student (or maybe even if you haven't) you've probably had that stomach-churning moment when your bank statement dropped below ten dollars. Maybe even below five dollars. Or maybe, if you enjoy living on the financial edge as I do, you've managed to keep a whole $2.41 in your account.

When I moved to New York City almost four years ago, I had visions of eating out at trendy restaurants, shopping for designer clothes, and partaking in the most sophisticated of events that the city had to offer. I just forgot about a few minor details: a) These things cost money. Sometimes a lot of money. b) I don't have a lot of money, and the little amount that I do have should theoretically be going toward my college tuition so that I can, you know, stay in New York? It's a vicious and unfair truth, but I can't avoid it. Luckily, with some careful planning and lots of work (literally, I work a lot), I've been able to get by quite well so far. Hopefully I'll be able to share some of my knowledge about living in the city on the cheap, and maybe pick up some tips from others too!