Broke-Ass of the Week – Blogger Nicole Wasilewicz
Every week we feature a different person from the community shedding a little light on their life of brokeitude. Who knows, maybe you’ll learn something about the human spirit'probably not.
Wanna be a Broke-Ass of the Week? Holler at us here and we’ll send you the questionnaire.
To say that Nicole is a woman about town is an understatement. She’s a blogger who writes about style, music and nightlife for some of NY’s hippest blogs and because of this she seems to be right in the thick of everything that’s happening. She also argues that there’s plenty of good Mexican food in New York City. Well…nobody’s perfect….
Name: Nicole Wasilewicz
Occupation: I say I’m a writer, but that’s just code for blogger. I’m the Music Editor at FREEwilliamsburg.com, I cover nightlife for NBCNewYork.com’s Niteside, and a bunch of other random stuff like a weekly street style column for BushwickBK.com. I’m currently on the search for an editorial day job to add to the mix. So readers of Broke Ass, feel free to contact me with any leads…
What neighborhood do you live in?: Bushwick, Brooklyn– off the Morgan L stop. I used to live closer to the heart of Williamsburg, but there’s a certain kind of comfort I get living in an industrial wasteland just a few blocks from the projects. It’s hard to explain, but I grew up in New York so my neighborhood just feels more like home. I need the diversity and grit, and besides, I get to live in this amazing converted knitting factory– my rent is super cheap and I have 16 foot ceilings.
What are you listening to these days?: Right this second? This really amazing space disco mix by Behold the Destroyer, who also happens to be my boyfriend. Right around 8:45, you just can’t help but do the shoulder dance in your chair. I spent the entire winter listening to Sibylle Baier, the new Beach House album, and Neil Young on vinyl. I’ve been revisiting a lot of bad 90s hip-hop recently too– “Lookin’ At Me” by Ma$e is pretty much the best song ever.
Best money saving tip: I cut & dye my own hair… and that’s why it always looks like shit.
What do you refuse to spend money on?: Everything. I don’t take cabs because that’s what the subway is for, I usually go to bars or parties where I can probably drink for free– whether I know someone there who can hook it up or it’s a tip from MyOpenBar.com’s iPhone app. I definitely won’t pay to get into something, but that’s mainly because I’ve been spoiled by press tickets & guest lists because of my job.
Most expensive thing you’ve ever bought: My MacBook, that crashed about a week ago. I lost everything since my external hard drive was dropped when I moved in September. I’m currently taking donations. I also bought a pair of Versace sunglasses once that I almost lost to the Pacific Ocean while boogie boarding (there’s no non-gay way of saying that) at Stinson Beach. They were lifted off my head by a wave and I decided that anyone stupid enough to wear $300 sunglasses in the ocean deserved to lose them. When I got to the shore my friend was all “Oh no, your glasses!” and another friend was all “These glasses?” and pulled them out of the water. Apparently they brushed up against his leg.
How’d that feel?: The computer thing? Well, it was the first grown-up purchase I ever made. Thinking about it right now makes my heart hurt. As for the sunglasses? It was all pretty magical. I mean, the ocean never spits anything back out at you like that. But I bought the sunglasses with a credit card my dad gave me strictly for college books. And after months of “food shopping” at 7-11 for cigarettes and beer, the $300 Sunglass Hut purchase was the end of that joy ride.
Favorite cheap eat: Bushwick is the land of tacos. I lived in California for 5 years and I stand by the fact that there is plenty of good Mexican food in New York. If you want to spend a little more, Pinche Taqueria on the corner of Bleeker & Lafayette has some of the best “higher-end” tacos, and their elote is crazy yummy. I also make a really good pasta with mozzarella, a bag of frozen peas, and red pepper flakes that feeds 4 and costs like $5 to make.
Favorite dive bar: Lucy’s in the East Village. My apartment is right in the middle of King’s County and Wreck Room, so that’s always a great 3:45am pit stop. The Levee also has really great drink specials. As for serious smelly places you can’t help but love… I really love taking friends from out of town to Mars Bar for daytime beers just because there are always crazy drunk old dudes in there.
Best deal you’ve ever gotten: Anything I’ve ever bought at Urban Jungle. I wear a pair of vintage steel-toed leather boots I got there almost everyday. They look like cowboy boots but more slouchy, and without the contrast stitching. They’re also almost 2 sizes too big but were only $15 and the leather is butter soft and perfect to wear layers of cute socks with in the winter time. A friend of mine found a vintage white Chanel clutch there once for $25… I was really bummed I didn’t spot it first.
Favorite free thing to do: New York in the summer time is pretty much the most epic thing ever– just tons of free stuff to do. The Pool Parties at the Waterfront (which are amazing no matter how many people want to hate on them), BBQing on rooftops, mixing PBRs with Newman’s Own Raw Lemonade… I can’t wait.
If you woke up a millionaire, what’s the first thing you’d buy?: Plane tickets. Lots and lots of plane tickets.
Despite not having money, do you still love your life?: Definitely. I always joke about how I live the fabulous life, although sometimes I’m not sure I can afford the Metrocard to make it to the party. It’s all about interviewing Zac Posen or Hot Chip one minute, and then counting change for a slice of pizza the next. I have really amazing people in my life, and that’s really all that matters at the end of the day.
Do you own my book?: I will admit that I haven’t gotten around to them which is pretty lame considering New York and San Francisco are the only two US cities I’ve lived in for extended periods of time. How about you send me a copy?
Best hangover cure: Brunch. Fountain sodas and sunglasses. Courtney on a Sundays from Roberta’s– it’s equal parts red wine and cherry cola and makes life much better after a night of crazy.
Are you a hipster?: I’m young, broke, and live in Brooklyn with an affinity for vintage dresses, records, and boys with beards– I think most people would say yes. I think maybe I would say yes too, although I really don’t know what that word means anymore and why everybody is so afraid of it.