One-Bedroom Apartment in Circa-1926 Building
Location Carnegie Hill
Rent $1060 (rent controlled)
Square feet 650
Occupants Linda Danz (songwriter-painter); Paul Fairall (singer-songwriter; security guard, Queens Wildlife Center)
You've been here 35 years!? [Linda] You can get up now.
You're right near the Russian cathedral with the onion domes. Your lobby has silky veneered furniture, thin lamps, all so crisp and polished. When I was married the first time, a million years ago, this [the room with the bed on the floor] was the dining room. I used to be married into a wealthier family. He was a biophysicist, I mean biochemist. It's been a long time. I moved in here when I married him. Then the apartment was completely decorated by his Park Avenue mother. His father, a psychiatrist, he's dead now but this story is so cool. Remember Rosemary's Baby, Dr. Saperstein who put a spell on her? That character was based on my former father-in-law. I met my first husband at a fraternity party at NYU. I went to FIT. 1967.
Who was the second husband? Him. Over there in the chair. The building changed a lot since it went co-op. There used to be artists and actors. They got bought out. I could have been offered $50,000 or something at the time. It seemed like the most stable thing to stay here. I grew up in the projects, the Jacob Riis Houses. We moved up in life to Astoria, the Woodside houses. Paul and I met in Paris 14 years ago. [Paul] I was in a band, Swimming in Sand, traveling around Europe. My hometown is Leicester, England. [Linda] I came over to Paris with the good friend of the friend he was staying with. It was absolute chance. [Paul] She had a sense of humor that was cracking me up. [Linda] Within days, I brought him back to the apartment I was staying at and seduced him. Friends were proud of me 'cause that's what you're supposed to do in Paris.
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Just like in New York. Everybody has sex in apartments, all day long. I just came from an assignation. I'm going to another one tomorrow. [Paul] I went back to England. [Linda] The morning after. I said if you're ever in the city, give me a call. [Paul] It was three weeks. I'm being cool. It looked like the band would be coming to New York. [Linda] A lot of phone calls. We actually watched The Wizard of Oz on the phone. That bill was about $400.
When people are in love, they spend money. [Linda] We still do that. Yes, just the same as before. It's better. There is a 12-year age difference. Paul is younger. [Paul] But we both have the same Chinese animal sign. [Linda] The year of the boar.
There was a rocky period. The first five years. They were hell. We didn't know each other. [Paul] I have an ego the size of a planet. [Linda] The first two and a half years, I had a roommate in the back. There was a bit of tension between Paul and my roommate. [Paul] My parents were going to come visit, stay here. [Linda] So the roommate moved out.
Everything is played out in this space. [Linda] Dish throwing, door slamming. A lot of storming off to my aunt's in Astoria. [Paul] I didn't have anywhere to go. It was a bit oppressive.
You're here all day? [Linda] I have a constant stream of people coming to sit for me. I was fired a year and a half ago. I was a magazine designer for years. Being fired changed my life. I'm completely overjoyed. At first it was that shock, There aren't any jobs for a 55-year-old woman in the cityat least not what I had. I see our future as successful songwriters. [Paul] There are her unemployment checks. [Linda] I'll get another 13 weeks. [Paul] Then the universe will take care of us again.
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