Broke-Ass of the Week – Illyanna Maisonet

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.

Barely scraping by with the help of sneaking onto Muni and over-ordering Hot Pockets at her former job so she could stock her freezer, Illyanna was a professional struggling artist for four years. She hand-painted images onto vintage shirts for men and found her shirts on the backs of members of Sonic Youth, Andrew Bird, Iron and Wine, The Album Leaf and Bon Iver. Now she’s in culinary school on a full scholarship (!) where she’s guaranteed two squares a day. There are even leftovers to take home, gratis. Check out Illyanna’s misadventures on her blog!

Name: Illyanna Maisonet

Age: 29

Occupation: Unemployed Pâtissière – broke-ass baker.

What neighborhood do you live in?: Upper Haight

What are you listening to these days?: Beirut, The Kinks, Agent Ribbons, Fleet Foxes, Miles Davis, Billie Holiday, The Limousines, The Dodos, Curtis Mayfield, Celia Cruz and Tito Puente.

Best money saving tip: Artist receptions, $0.99 stores, farmer’s markets, thrift stores outside of SF.

What do you refuse to spend money on?: Cover charges for craft faires.

Most expensive thing you’ve ever bought: My laptop.

How’d that feel?: Like I was hustled.

Favorite cheap eat: Cuchifrito joints.

Favorite dive bar: Trax

Best deal you’ve ever gotten: My constantly worn $0.75 black Dickies zip-up hoodie.

Favorite free thing to do: Artist receptions.

If you woke up a millionaire, what’s the first thing you’d buy?: My mom’s new house in a ghetto-free neighborhood.

Despite not having money, do you still love your life?: Hells yeah.

Do you own my book?: I can’t! I’m too damn broke. Although I considered borrowing it from Green Apple. I’d love to own the San Francisco one.

Best hangover cure: Rum mixed w/ Tamarindo Jarritos (a lot of ice) and alcapurrias, sitting on the beach.

Are you a hipster?: If I say no, that means I am a hipster because hipsters always say they’re not hipster. But, if I say I’m a hipster, that means I’m a wannabe, right? Basically, I can either confirm or deny.

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About the author

Christy Jovanelly - Cheapskate Commentator

When Christy announced she was leaving her family's Southern California home and moving to San Francisco, her mom said, "Have fun in that den of sin." This is the only (however sarcastic) advice Christy has ever taken from her mom, who also told her to join eharmony.com and cover her eyes during sex scenes in movies. Christy puts her creative writing degree to good use by locating the typos on Chinese food menus and spends most of her time challenging friends to all-you-can-eat contests and trying to get that one bartender at Zeitgeist to smile.

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